The inevitable… and discouraging… slip-up.
We all have them and they’re definitely not a new phenomenon. So what do we do when we’re going along, doing our best, and out of nowhere the dreaded slip-up happens?
There’s no one clear-cut approach to this that works for everyone. I’m going to share my philosophy and experiences. Feel free to try this for yourself. If it works for you, great. If not, remember there are other things to try to get yourself back on track.
When I slip-up I try to do some damage control if at all possible. If I slip up in the early part of the day, say afternoon or earlier, I do my best to make the rest of my meals and snacks as low in calories as possible without feeling like I’m starving. What this consists of is making it mostly vegetables with small portions of fruit and lean protein on the side, occasionally some whole grains if I can fit them in. Usually this helps me to be in my calorie range, or barely over it. If I slip up in the later part of the day, I apply the same eating method in order to minimize the damage, and I accept that I will still be over calories.
How I deal with the day after a slip-up, whether or not I was able to put that method to use, I might still feel a bit disappointed in myself. One thing I do NOT do is beat myself up about it because it is counterproductive and will only make the problem escalate. I may reflect on what happened and plan how to keep it from happening in the future. The greatest part of a slip-up is the potential to learn and grow from it! It’s valuable knowledge that will help you as you continue your journey.
Sometimes we still feel bad after a slip-up, even with damage control or damage minimization. The best and fastest way to make yourself feel better is to make one good healthy or productive choice as soon as possible. Choose a fruit or veggie as a snack, choose to exercise when you might not have otherwise, or do something else active that makes you feel good and raises your spirits. Telling yourself to make just one good choice takes the insane pressure off of you. Trust me, once you make that choice, the pride of your accomplishment makes you feel like you’re going to be okay, and maybe even better than okay.
So learn from it, let it go, and move forward!