How to Eat Intuitively on Thanksgiving

Read How to Eat Intuitively on Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is today in the states. Happy Thanksgiving, all!

This is a day where MANY women (and men) struggle to feel “in control” of their eating.

We have a name for this: it’s called “food coma.” Where we eat SO much food and SO much at once that we feel like we’re in a coma and cannot move. Why do we do this to ourselves?

Let me just say… it’s got WAY more to do with our mentality and way less to do with what our bodies need (unless, you’re physically restricting food from yourself).

That said, here are some tips to enjoy this Thanksgiving…

Step #1 – meditate on these truths:

  • Thanksgiving is about being grateful, spending time with family, and feeling good; it’s not the time to make yourself feel sick & stuffed.
  • You’re likely going to have leftovers for the entire week, so there’s no need to eat it all on Thanksgiving Day. Remind yourself that you can eat these things ANYtime you want.
  • Thanksgiving comes once a year, but the food is an option every single day. You can make Thanksgiving food (turkey, candy, pie, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole) anytime through the year if you want it again! How fun would that be?!

Step #2 – practical steps:

  • Eat a regular breakfast the morning of. If your T-Day meal is not until 4:00, have a regular breakfast, lunch, and snack before you go. You do NOT want to “save room” for a huge meal before you go. Doing that will ONLY set you up to have a HUGE MEAL. We’re going for “normal meal.” In order to have a normal T-Day meal, you need to have regular meals before hand, too! Do not skip this step.
  • Dress to be comfortable & confident. Wear something that you feel good in. Spend a little extra time getting ready today, and put on your favorite outfit.
  • When you’re done getting ready, look in the mirror and say “I’m thankful for YOU today.”

Step #3 – dream up your ideal plate:

  • Think about your FAVORITE Thanksgiving foods. If you could have your dream plate, what would be on it? Would there be turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans, or something different? If you didn’t have to think about calories, being “healthy,” or anything like that, what would you truly want to eat? This is the food that will TRULY satisfy you. Thanksgiving means there will be A LOT of food, but we only have room for so much in our stomachs! So let’s use that room for the food that is truly fabulous and satisfying. When you figure out what your dream plate looks like, recreate it at your Thanksgiving dinner! Don’t love turkey? Don’t worry! You only need to eat what you truly love. Your plate may not look like the “perfectly balanced” meal (three types of potatoes and a little bit of pie) but that is totally ok! Your body will help you balance it out over the course of a day or a few days. Rather than stuffing yourself with foods that you don’t love, just savor the ones that you do!

Step #4 – visualize:

  • Visualize how you want your holiday to go. Close your eyes and see yourself walking through the door of your family Thanksgiving. Is it loud? Is it crowded? What’s the environment like? Next, think about the food. Where is it? Is the table full? What’s there? How do you want to feel when you see all of that food. As you’re remembering that you can have this food ANYtime you want it (not just on this day), how does the need to have it all now lessen? Visualize yourself looking over all of the snacks, asking yourself what truly sounds good, and putting a few snacks on your plate. See yourself sitting down, slowing your body language, leaning away from the table, relaxing into your chair, talking to family, and calmly chewing through each bite. Breath deeply. Really taste everything. What does that feel like? Next, meal time comes. Visualize, again, scanning the table, asking yourself what looks the best, and getting a little bit of everything that sounds good (no limitations). Then, visualize yourself finding a place to sit. As you find your seat, notice your surroundings. Are people eating fast? Talking fast? Is it loud? Visualize yourself staying calm throughout this experience. Remind yourself that you can have fun and be calm at the same time. It’s about your mindset and your body language working together. Taste each thing on your plate, eat slow and really roll around the flavors on your tongue. How much are you enjoying your food? Visualize how you want to feel after dinner. When dessert comes, are you hungry? Or could you take something home? If you’re hungry, how much room do you have? How do you want to feel when you’re done with dessert? If you’re going to take it home, take little bits of whichever desserts sound good. Give yourself full permission to enjoy dessert the very next time you feel hungry. Remember, calmly, that you don’t have to have it all now if you’re feeling full already. Visualize yourself saying goodbye to your family, giving hugs, and feeling good. Visualize yourself feeling full, but not stuffed. Just about right. How does that feel? How much better do you feel about Thanksgiving?

Step #5 – choose your word:

  • Visualizing your entire evening before you go will truly make your experience with Thanksgiving food easier and so much more enjoyable, but we also want to give you a “life-jacket.” Pick one single word that you’ll remember when things start to feel speedy. For example, Paige’s word is “calm.” When things in life start to feel speedy, she thinks of the word “calm” and remembers that she doesn’t have to be moving or thinking so fast. She pulls herself back, centers her mind, takes a breath, and then continues to move along (just a little bit slower). Simi’s word is “peace,” which helps her to slow her racing heart and mind and truly be present in the moment. You may have to repeat your word several times through the night, so pick a word that is simple to remember. Don’t worry, we will be right there with you!

I created these steps together with my friend Simi years ago! I hope they’re helpful for you — they still stand true for me today!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING :-).

Love, Paige
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