Enjoying the Holidays without Guilt

Welcome back to The Balanced Dietitian Podcast! We are getting so close to the holidays. How are we feeling, my friends? We are visiting my husband’s family. We are trying to take some time to disconnect, connect, relax, eat, and chill, all of the wonderful things we do over the holidays. 

Every year when we get around this season I get very reflective and the biggest thing that comes back for me always is the idea of actually being able to enjoy the holidays. Growing up, I loved Christmas. It was a fun, happy, and exciting time. For many years I started to hate the holidays. When I had a difficult relationship with food the holidays were so difficult. 

Today I really want to talk about different tips and things that we can do to enjoy holiday events and social events in general. 

In this episode, we discuss: 

[07:08] Bringing in awareness and reflection on the holidays

The first thing that I think can be really supportive is just bringing a lot of awareness and reflection on the holidays. What I mean by this is that we all have different traditions with our family and different dynamics. There are some things that are really great and some things that can be a lot more triggering. If we can proactively start thinking about the things that are very triggering around the holidays we can be prepared when those triggers arise.  

[11:09] Have a structure and a plan     

I do really think that having a structured plan over the holidays can be really helpful. When I think of a structure over the holidays, the biggest thing for me is having a structure and plan around food since you are going to be out of your routine. It can be really helpful for us to make sure that we still prioritize our nourishment and make sure that our body feels safe especially if you have a history of disordered eating or you’re currently in the process of healing your relationship with food and your body. Making sure you eat enough and are well nourished is so important.

[16:03] Set intentions and visualize

Another thing that I suggest is to set intentions and visualize. I have been doing this since I started to heal my relationship with food and my body. Visualization is something that helped me a lot and allowed me to experience life the way I wanted to experience life. I tend to think about the events that we have coming up and I start to think about a few things. First I set an intention of what I want to get out of the experience. And two, I really focus on the feelings I want to feel during that event.

[18:43] Practice self-care and engage in non-food related activities 

Practicing self-care is really important during the holidays especially if we’re out of routines. It is also important to allow time for daily self-care. It doesn’t need to be a bath or masks. That is not what we’re talking about here. It’s ways that we can reconnect to ourselves and fill up our own cups. It is really important to me to have that time for me to reconnect so I can then show up in a better way.

[21:09] Identify and rely on your support system

Lastly, identify your support system and be able to rely on your support system. Our support system is so important. A lot of us feel the need to isolate ourselves and do everything all by ourselves. The truth is that we don’t. The truth is that we are social humans and social beings rely on our support system. We always get to connect with our loved ones and get support from them and support them as well. 

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