Do you remember when you were a kid and that you thought adults knew everything? You thought your primary school teacher didn’t have a life outside of school, that perhaps they just step into their school cupboard at night and come out again in the morning.
It’s funny when you become an adult that you realise that adults don’t know everything. One day my nan said to me that even though she was 80 something she still felt like a little girl at times.
I was speaking to a group the other day and we were discussing how to get the will power you need to decrease your intake of higher fat, higher calorie and higher sugar foods or to stop eating once you had a taste. What it boils down to is being able to resist temptation and the need to have instant gratification. “I like it therefore I will eat more of it,” or “Once I start I can’t stop eating.” These things we say to ourselves are really self-fulfilling prophecies – once we say them we make it happen. So how can we stop it?
Let’s get back to the child inside us, the one who is about 2-3years old – I know mine is there as I have ‘tantrums’ regularly when driving in the traffic or dealing with my kids – we tend to indulge this child inside and let them out regularly to have their way – but is it helpful? Does it really make us feel good?
Think about who you would really like to be in charge – is it the 3 year old or the 30/40/50 year old? The older, wiser you has the ability to negotiate and compromise whereas the 3-year-old does not. What we need, in times of temptation to overeat, is the adult us in charge, not the 3-year-old so that we can say, “I do enjoy eating them but it doesn’t mean I want to overeat as I know that doesn’t make me happy in the long term.” Or “I can eat just one, I’m an adult who wants better health so I can stop at one.”
You may be sceptical on your ability to do this, but have you ever tried? It’s true as adults we can doubt our own abilities –funnily enough we may need to tap into our 3 year old self again to start believing we can do anything!
So, it seems that both entities within us have a purpose but we may not be using them the right way around.
You won’t know it works until you try!
Lisa is a Dietitian, behaviour change coach, mentor, speaker and author. She has been practicing over 23 years and specializes in holistically customizing diet and lifestyle plans to each individual for weight loss and a healthy relationship with food. Her clientele often report they feel the best they have ever felt and wish they had started sooner, as they have no guilt around eating and have successfully changed the way they look at eating well and losing weight.