Ah guilt. It’s not fun is it?
I remember a morning in L.A. recently where I caught myself having guilty thoughts about food again. The second I woke up my mind flicked back to what I’d eaten for dinner the night before. I berated myself for not eating as well as I “should have”. That word ‘should’ can really haunt you.
I’m actually glad these old thoughts of guilt popped up again – they were a reminder of how powerful and exhausting this emotion can be. I believe that being a perfectionist in terms of what you’re eating or feeling guilty about food after you’ve eaten it only prevents healing.
For a healthy relationship with food, you have to give yourself a little freedom and leeway. Some days you’ll eat super clean and exercise. On others, you’ll indulge a little and maybe give your body a rest. It’s called balance – that’s why the 80/20 approach is so important. You have to tune in to your body and listen to what it needs, rebuilding your relationship with food and your body one step at a time (or with the help of my guide) .
A night out with your girlfriends and a few glasses of vino is good for the soul – so why kick yourself the next morning? A sleep in and day on the couch could be just what your body needs to restore – so why beat yourself up about it?
Be kind to yourself and know that there is always time to get back on track. If you feel you’ve overindulged, remember that tomorrow is a new day where you can make the choice to eat cleaner and lighter.
Because the feelings of guilt will pass, I promise.
What I do when I feel guilty about food:
I close my eyes, take a big, deep breath and then let it go slowly. I can actually feel the relief in my body when I do this. Guilt manifests itself as heaviness and stress in the body. I believe that when we fill our minds with these ‘heavy’ thoughts, they weigh us down. The mind is so powerful so we must monitor our thoughts. Let. It. Go.
If this doesn’t work, try writing down what you feel anxious or guilty about. Transfer the thoughts onto paper to get them out of your head. Alternatively, practice yoga or meditation. Personally, yoga has allowed me to build a sense of peace and respect in my body – helping to heal my relationship with food. Why not give it a go?