Moderation vs Abstinence

I’ve always thought I can’t do moderation. More of an all or nothing sort of person, for better or worse. When I’m focussed and committed to my weight loss goals, I remove all temptation from the house and don’t even consider consuming anything that doesn’t help me reach my goals. But, as I’ve seen over the last couple of years, as soon as I relax, the all or nothing becomes all and the temptations are back in the cupboard and being consumed by the dozen.

So maybe all or nothing/abstinence doesn’t work so well for me as a long term practice.

Since mid-January I’ve been working on nourishment and moderation. That’s not to say that I have a whole heap of treats in my cupboard, because I don’t. But I do acknowledge that they exist, in fact they’re everywhere. So if I can’t avoid seeing them, I can choose not to have them. Or to partake in moderation. What a concept!

At work the rule is that you organise morning tea for your own birthday. January/February has seen a LOT of birthdays. It’s not usually the healthiest of food so I make a decision about whether I would like some (only a small amount) and feel OK with that decision. I don’t barter with myself (one piece of cake equals 50 squats), I just accept the decision I have made, ensure I stay on track for the rest of the day and move on.

This is such a novel concept to me!

And I’m finding these little treats are not stopping me from losing weight. I enjoy them, taste every mouthful then get back to health eating.

The other day I thought I’d been tracking well so on the way to the supermarket, I gave myself permission to buy a small treat. But while I was in the supermarket and standing in front of said treat, I thought that I wasn’t craving it, so why bother? Walked away and continued my shopping.

I’m finding that I feel in control of me. I see food as fuel and nourishment. It doesn’t dictate my feelings, I don’t give it the power to control me and I have no desire to stray from healthy eating or binge. When I do partake, be it something sweet or alcohol, I enjoy it then move on.

The funny thing is, I was at a meeting the other day and someone had made a cake for the meeting. I had a small sliver but to be honest, it wasn’t that nice and I was kind of disappointed that I had allowed myself cake then didn’t enjoy it. Can’t win some days!

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