Hello and welcome to How to love your body, welcome to our first episode of 2021! Today we are talking about new year’s resolutions why we keep doing them even when they don’t work and what we can do instead!
1. We’re sold the idea of a fresh start when the calendar turns to January, we think things will be different this time, the things in our life we don’t like will shift and we will be new people! (Also being told that weight loss is life changing doesn’t help)
The first step here is just realizing this isn't true. The best way to do this is to look at your own evidence. How have the new year’s of your past been? Were they profound shifts that gave you a new life every year? Probably not. … And there isn’t something you haven't figured out yet that will make it different. It’s just that a change in the calendar year doesn't actually have an effect on anything at all. If you want to make changes in an area of your life, just do it when you want to do it. No need to wait for new years. This just leads to the whole “Ill start again on Monday effect”, especially when it comes to dieting, new years is the ultimate Monday. This leads people to having a last supper for ALL of december with the promise of a fresh new start on Jan 1 ! This all or nothing thinking is not helpful. Step 1 in getting out of the new years resolution rut is to stop giving January so much significance!
2. The New Year seems like a good time to get motivated and dive into something that gives us purpose and feelings of success. This is a HUGE driver of why people continue dieting long after it feels good and we trudge through even with all of the negative side effects.
With a lot of people we work with . they share that not dieting just feels complacent, it’s boring, it’s stagnant, it can feel like giving up or letting yourself go. We are used to drama and so called accomplishments when it comes to what we eat and what we weigh. This can be addicting even when its negatively affecting you..
The key here is to foster these natural desires of achievement, success, progression and purpose into something more worthwhile (and effective).
This doesn’t mean shifting one obsession for another but having something you’re working towards or working on can give us so much energy and excitement. For Lauren and I that definitely shifted from dieting to this work. Instead of feeling like I always want to improve and be working on my body, I have this amazing work to continue getting better at, to share new things and create new things for you and it does give me a sense of purpose and progress that dieting used to (but in a much healthier way).
What about finding that for yourself this year? What is something you want to work towards that takes effort and time? It can be simple like learning to play the ukulele or learning how to knit, it could be starting a business or going back to school. Whatever it is, pick something that sounds exciting to you, makes you want to keep working at it, and gives you joy and a sense of accomplishment as you continue to work towards something.
3. Most resolutions are fear based/ have a fixing energy. Our society runs like this so this is how we make resolutions - media tells us to buy this and buy that to fix these things about yourself so that is how we tackle resolutions. That never works long term - so we are motivated to make a resolution from a sense of lack and needing to fix something that is negative about ourselves but this burns out quickly.
You can still do something new in the new year without it being about fixing, instead it can be about self exploration and adding good things into your life.
A great new resource we have for this is our UnDiet January Calendar, it gives you one small thing to do each day to work towards being an UnDieter. It includes intuitive eating, body image, self care and gentle movement.
You can grab that at bit.ly/undietjan
PS - We started a new instagram account for our upcoming app called The UnDiet Collective so definitely come join us on there! - this is also where you can watch the trailer for our upcoming documentary called Behind the Before and After!