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Are you a struggling single parent?

 

Are you a struggling single parent? Becoming ‘second place’

 

Caution: This blog is written from the writer’s own viewpoint and knowledge/experience.  It is not a substitute for a trained counselor or medical expert in this field.   Do not follow this advice and if in any doubt, seek professional help.

 

 

‘Forgiveness is one of the most powerful medicines you can take for healing your mind, body and spirit’

S & S Ahmad

 

What is a struggling single parent?

When a person is solely responsible for the upbringing of a child or children, they deal with all of their physical, emotional and financial needs without the support of the other parent.  The role of a mother and father is one of the most difficult yet rewarding in equal or greater measure if the environment is a nurturing, loving and supportive one.  The perfect mix to create such an environment requires the right emotional strength on the part of both the mother and the father.  An imbalance either side can cause a disruption and allow emotional wounds to manifest, grow and fester. This can lead to a distortion of reality and a display of negative emotions such as anger, frustration, isolation, betrayal and disconnection from the family unit.   If this situation is not addressed and allowed to escalate, it could lead to an irreparable breakdown of the family leaving one person with entire parental responsibility.  There are other circumstances that can also result in one parent taking over the role of both mother and father such as divorce, separation, death, illness, abuse and addiction.   If you have emotional, financial and physical support from others close to you or you have the financial means and emotional strength yourself to adequately provide for yourself and your family, you are likely to suffer less than someone who has not.  The struggle we may experience can reveal itself in many forms such as lack of means to pay bills, buy the basic needs for your children, provide emotional support etc.   Behind each obstacle that single parents face, lies a personal story, pain, accomplishment, challenges, joy, tragedy fear, lack.   Depending on our story and the emotions that form the foundation of it, will impact the parent we become.  The child or children concerned will sense our state of being and respond accordingly.  If we are struggling, they will struggle, if we are angry, they will be angry, if we are supported, they are supported, if we are happy, they are happy etc.  In a nutshell, the belief of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle is that depending on where we are in life now, we need to either accept the past and learn from it to change our future or view the present with fresh eyes to change our perspective and so our experience.

 

 

Why do you struggle as a single parent?

Whether you are currently a struggling single parent, or if you were in the past and now feeling the negative side effects such as estrangement, resentment and judgement from your adult child, there is a way out.  To begin the healing and forgiveness that is required, we must first study and understand the pros and cons of why you are struggling within the journey that is yours.  It must however be understood, that The Anti-Diet Lifestyle does not in any way support or tolerate physical or mental abuse of any kind and this program does not include or address such help.  In these instances, please seek professional help.

Pros

  • You are free from a bad relationship which is unhealthy for both yourself, your children and others around you.
  • You are able to make decisions for your children and yourself without the negative influence of a partner that does not have the best interest of the family unity at heart.
  • It is easier to organize your life and reflect on the needs of yourself and your family rather than wasting energy trying to please another.
  • Being alone is far better than feeling alone with someone else.
  • Your energy levels will grow if you can begin to focus on all the positives instead of the negatives.
  • You will have more time to focus on and pursue your own hopes and dreams allowing you to explore your own personality.
  • Without being tied to someone who does not want you, you’ll be free to find someone else who can bring happiness, stability and companionship and love to your family unit.
  • Children are happier when we are happier.
  • There are more opportunities to connect to others and build supportive friendships.
  • Time previously spent with an unsuitable partner can be spent more productively i.e. you can start new hobbies, book holidays, spend quality time with the children.
  • The household budget will be completely in your control giving you independence and freedom from a stifling situation.
  • You become more self-sufficient and may even begin to learn how to carry out small repairs in the house, redecorate and take control of decisions that need to be made.
  • There will be more time to spend in helping your children with schoolwork without an interfering partner.
  • If you were previously stopped from wearing the clothes and makeup that you wanted to, you are now free to have your own style.
  • If you are happier without your ex, you are more likely to take up a healthier lifestyle that will lead you to lose weight.
  • Without the influence of a controlling or spiteful partner, your levels of stress will reduce positively impacting your overall physical and mental health and well being.
  • You may experience all of the financial benefits such as a house and child support without the negativity of the partner.

Cons

  • You may experience financial stress as your household income decreases and the ability to meet your bills becomes difficult or impossible.
  • You may turn to food for comfort resulting in weight gain.
  • The demanding needs to your children may become overwhelming as you are also trying to deal with the problems of the break up.
  • Depression, anxiety and other mental health issues may arise as you attempt to repair your heart.
  • If you work full time, it may be difficult to juggle the needs of the children over the time and demands of work.
  • Feelings of loneliness and isolation can be increased even if your ex was not a loving a supporting person.
  • Your children may become more difficult making it very hard to bring order and discipline into the household.
  • Children tend to blame the partner that stays as they are the only person they feel they can turn to and trust. This makes it a very hurtful situation for the remaining parent causing mutual resentment to set in due to frustration, miscommunication and the grief caused by the breakup.
  • You may experience an overwhelm of negative emotions as the sole responsibility for your family is resting on you. This can result in you being snappy, moody and less tolerant with your children.  This in turn triggers children to misbehave further causing a negative vicious cycle.
  • Jealously can be triggered when the absent partner openly speaks about or allows the children to mix their new partner. This can be made worse, if the children proceed to build a relationship with and like or prefer the new partner.
  • If the absent partner is not interested in having contact with the children, this can make them feel hurt and abandoned. In this instant, the children can aim their anger and loss at the remaining parent.
  • Without child support, money worries and stress will increase leading to a less than healthy state of mind for the remaining parent. In this state, the remaining parent may begin to see their children as a burden because they are struggling to support them.
  • When the remaining parent’s life is full of worries about coping emotionally, financially and physically, they may miss out on the true joy of parenthood as their life is consumed by the need to merely survive.
  • The remaining parent may be harshly judged by others including their family. In some extreme cases, the family side with the absent partner and blame the remaining parent.
  • Children can be negatively manipulated by family or the absent parent causing them to hate the remaining parent.
  • Feelings of guilt can make the remaining parent overcompensate by spoiling the children and giving them more than they need. This situation leads to children having no value for things or for the parent that provided leading them to become demanding and selfish.
  • If the remaining parent is struggling to cope, they may turn to addictive habits such as excessively drinking, drugs, overeating, having multiple partners, over socializing and neglecting themselves and their children. This behaviour demonstrates the extent of the damage that the absent parent can cause.  It is easy to point the finger of blame on the remaining parent by threatening to remove the children or labeling them as an unfit parent with judgement instead of with love and understanding.
  • In certain cultures, no matter what the situation is or where the blame for the break up lies, it is always seen as the woman who must carry the blame and shame by being scrutinized and excluded with support being withdrawn. They are forbidden to begin a new life or meet something else making the situation even more painful for the remaining parent.
  • The remaining parent’s confidence and self-esteem can dive as they absorb all of the blame and the blows from all concerned.
  • If the absent partner has died, there could a repression of grief as the parent is forced to deal with the immediate and ongoing needs of the family. This can make it even harder for the remaining parent to cope.  The grief may then reappear much later in life causing a breakdown.

The Exercise

 

What you will need

A journal

Your affirmation – ‘I love and forgive myself totally and I am releasing all guilt’

If you are currently a struggling single parent or are experiencing estrangement or isolation from your adult children, know that the situation you are in is very common because it is extremely difficult to bring up children on your own.  It is OK for you to acknowledge your pain and the struggle you are in.  We can begin to heal and let go of some of burden by releasing the need to be perfect, forgiving ourselves for mistakes and knowing we are enough and doing our best with what we have.   Hope for the future, the ability to cope better and greater love for ourselves and our family can be found if we allow ourselves to begin the journey of acceptance of our situation with grace.

 

Step 1 – Take a journal and write down at least 50 things that you are managing on a day-to-day basis or that you did manage on a day to day basis on your own as a single parent.  Nothing is too small to mention, for example, having to bring the hoover from upstairs to downstairs when you are cleaning, here are some more to get you started:

 

Washing clothes

Ironing uniforms

Ironing work clothes

Making breakfast

Paying the phone bill

Sewing on buttons

The school run

Going to parents evening

Helping kids with homework

Taking children to activities

Paying the childminder

Finding a childminder

 

Step 2 – Take a journal and write down at least 50 things that you have sacrificed or are burdened with on a day-to-day basis or that you did sacrifice on a day-to-day basis on your own as a single parent.  Nothing is too small to mention, for example, you don’t have time to call a friend, here are some more to get you started:

 

No time for a relationship

Do not buy clothes for yourself

You may not eat so your children can

Giving up spare time to work longer

Sacrificing socializing to take on a second or third job

Watching TV shows you want for your children

Your own happiness and freedom to maintain contact for the children’s sake with the absent partner

Being you

100% responsibility for your children

Juggling multiple tasks

Having a bath without interruption

Reading a book

Going to the gym

Freedom

Negative judgement from others

 

Next, deeply reflect on your lists and honour and respect yourself for your achievements and challenges.  Commit to reviewing and adding to your lists regularly.  In times of struggle, reach for your lists and immerse yourself in them.  Use your affirmation as an additional tool to continually forgive yourself

 

Step 3 – This exercise can be taken a step further, by framing your achievements and hanging them on the wall for you to see.

 

Preparing yourself

Take three deep breaths in the morning and think about your intention for that day.

 

Step 1 

Take a deep breath and say your affirmation ‘I love and forgive myself totally and I am releasing all guilt’

Step 2

  1. Look at your reflection in the mirror
  2. Focus on your eyes, notice their colour and shape

Say the affirmation out loud several times

 

‘Don’t look back in anger’

Oasis

 

Caution: This blog is written from the writer’s own viewpoint and knowledge/experience.  It is not a substitute for a trained counselor or medical expert in this field.   Do not follow this advice and if in any doubt, seek professional help.

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of the Anti-Diet Lifestyle, 4 Crazy Steps to Weightloss Success!

 

 

Why do we self-sabotage our weight loss progress?!

Warning – This is a binge trigger! – If you find this article distressing please do not read it and instead seek professional help of a trained counsellor or a medical practitioner.

 

This is a subject that I’ve long been obsessed with finding the answer to.  On the face of it, self-sabotaging makes no sense whatsoever because it takes us further away from our goals leaving us feeling frustrated and unhappy because we have snatched success away from our own hands ourselves!

First let’s be clear about what self-sabotage actually is:

Self-sabotage is when we do something that we know will take us in the opposite direction of our goals.  It may even ruin any progress we have made so far taking us back to where we started or worse, further behind than before.

Here are some examples of self-sabotaging behaviours:

  • We procrastinate
  • Finding an excuse not to exercise
  • Justifying eating that second and third slice of cake (I’ve worked hard, I deserve it, it’s my birthday etc) and put off eating healthier for another day
  • We choose to watch a TV show instead of cleaning the house

 

  • We give up
  • We stop working on a project when it gets tougher and more demanding.
  • We stay in a job we don’t like and stop applying for a new one after we have been rejected a few times.
  • We stop looking for love proclaiming we love the single life.
  • An unforeseen expense that wipes out our savings stops us saving altogether

There are two ways in which we can self-sabotage:

  1. Consciously – This is when we are fully aware of our goals or wishes for the future but despite knowing this, we proceed with a behaviour or behaviours that will stop us from attaining them. A prime example of this is where our goal is to lose weight and instead of choosing to exercise, we decide instead to spend our time on social media.

 

  1. Unconsciously – This is where our mindset is in control and we are unaware that the behaviours we are choosing regularly are harmful to us. A great example of this type of self-sabotage is where someone who would like to lose weight seems to experience an urge to overeat any time they are complimented on their progress.  They do not realise that the compliment was a trigger and decide to binge without linking the two events.

As you can see, if you are on a weight loss journey both conscious and unconscious self-sabotage can be very damaging to your ability to reach your goal.

To try and understand this complex behaviour, let’s breakdown the events of the above unconscious responses:

Example

If someone notices that we have lost some weight and points it out, we feel compelled to prove them wrong by going on an eating ‘bender’ which reverses our efforts or even makes us gain more weight than when we started.

If we autopsy the event, we will feel totally confused about why this triggered us to go in the opposite direction of our goal of losing weight!  The facts are:

  • We want to lose weight
  • Things are going well and we are eating better
  • Our self-belief is up and down. Some days are easy and we breeze through them, others are more challenging and require us to dig deep inside of ourselves to find the motivation to persevere.
  • We are beginning to reap the rewards as we start to see progress and weight loss

You can be forgiven for thinking that there is nothing unusual here and this makes you even more confused as to why you basically self-sabotaged your chances of weight loss success.

The above example can be due to both a conscious AND unconscious self-sabotage:

Conscious

  • We know that overeating will destroy our progress
  • It makes us feel accountable and this feeling is too uncomfortable to bear
  • When people notice that we have lost weight, it can be embarrassing as it we feel it clearly tells others that we are on a weight loss journey

Unconscious

  • We have an overwhelming urge to overeat
  • We believe we do not deserve a compliment so display a behaviour that validates that we are not worthy
  • We do not have a strong enough belief in ourselves that we are capable of reaching our weight loss goal

These responses can be a result of:

Learned behaviours

  • This is how your parents reacted when you were a child
  • It was what you were taught to do by friends and family
  • This is how close relatives and friends reacted when you were a child

Coping strategies

  • You experienced a traumatic event that stole your self confidence
  • You were rejected numerous times in relationships that left you feeling unworthy
  • You lost someone close to you that left you feeling heartbroken, abandoned, angry, frustrated

 

Breaking the cycle

If you are trying to lose weight, it is vital that you commit to doing the work that is needed to break this vicious cycle.

 

Here are some steps that you can take to begin this extremely rewarding journey:

Step 1 – Awareness

Take stock of your life to find out if and how you are self-sabotaging your chances of weight loss success.  Use the grid below to help you (A few examples have been added to get you started):

 

What you want to do? What stops you? Why do you think it stops you? What can you do instead? What benefit would you enjoy?
Go for a walk The weather is cold It’s easier not to go Put on some inspirational music, warm clothes and go for that work My mental health would improve and I would have exercised
Eat 5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day They taste horrible My mum hated fruit and vegetables Experiment by trying lots of different types of fruits and vegetables I would be improving my health and my body would thank me for it
Wear clothes that look great on me I’m too big to wear them right now My ex always said that I look fat in dresses Practice and nurture self-love so that I know that someone’s opinion of me is not a fact – It’s just their opinion! I would feel empowered as I expanded my comfort zone.  I would begin to feel more confident and believe in myself more.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step 2 – Replacing self-sabotaging behaviours

Now that you are clearer about what you do and why you do it, arm yourself with behaviours that you plan to do the next time your automatic self-sabotaging response is triggered, here are some examples:

 

Self-sabotage response What I plan to do instead
 

I have the urge to eat everything in sight

 

Recognise why I feel like this

 

·         Take 3 deep breaths

·         Eat some healthy snacks

·         Prepare a meal, eat it slowly and let            myself enjoy it

·         Not feel guilty

·         Use affirmations

 

 

I don’t want to go for my walk today

 

 

Recognise why I feel like this

 

·         Take 3 deep breaths

·         Put on my walking clothes and                    shoes

·         Commit to walking for at least 5                  minutes

·         Not feel guilty

·         Use affirmations

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The more brutally honest you are with yourself, the more this exercise will help you.  Even just reaching the awareness level (Step 1) will help reduce the power that your self-sabotaging habits and behaviours have over you.   Remember awareness is a huge step towards defeating negative behaviour so the time you spend will be worth the effort you put in.  This is what I discovered about myself:

 

Reasons why I self-sabotaged my weight loss journey:

 

  • It was easier to remain where I was then make the effort to change
  • The need to be invisible
  • I was embarrassed of the fact I was overweight so didn’t want people to know I was trying
  • Not wishing to be held accountable
  • I felt vulnerable
  • Fearing being judged
  • I was copying learned behaviours
  • I was trying to cope (badly)

It was apparent to me that the reason I self-sabotaged ultimately took me back to the fact that I was mirroring learned behaviours and using food as a means of coping with issues in my life.  The links between the two were crystal clear and I felt a huge sense of relief as now that I knew my demons, I could work to defeat them!

I wish you luck on your own journey of self-discovery and healing.

 

WRITTEN BY SHERRY TAYLOR

AUTHOR OF THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE – 4 CRAZY STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS!

 

 

Why your treadmill should be your new BFF!

 

So, you’ve made the decision to lose weight, be healthier and feel amazing.  Setting this intention can immediately flood our brains with an image of how we would like to look and feel and this brings with it a temporary heightening of our motivation to make the changes we need to.  Exercise will obviously play a huge part in our physical and mental health and during this motivational phase, we tend to buy exercise equipment with pictures of ourselves as being slim and fit in our minds that spur us to make purchases of home exercise equipment.  I was no different and during the course of my fitness journey I have owned:

 

Exercise bike – more than one, in fact, I stopped counting after 3!

Treadmill

Rowing machine – Two of them!

Weights – numerous

Bands

Hula hoops – numerous

Skipping ropes – numerous

Yoga equipment – One complete set

 

If I sat down and itemised and totaled the cost of the above, I think I’d want to cry because 9 times out of 10, I NEVER used what I had bought.  Some things were only taken out of the box and then put-on display to be occasionally dusted!  Others, I used once or twice and then they became part of the furniture in my house.  Until then I hadn’t realised that you can use exercise equipment for:

 

Drying clothes

Hanging coats

Hanging handbags

Leaning things on!

 

After the initial excitement had worn off (and it always did), they would slowly start to get on my nerves.  They’d be banished to a part of the house that was rarely used (except for the above uses), start to gather dust and would automatically become invisible.  Then the inevitable day would come when I’d finally had enough of them and it would then be sold for a fraction of the price that I’d paid for it.  Unfortunately, I never seemed to learn my lesson because soon, the experience was forgotten and my next pledge to be slim resulted in the purchase of yet another piece of home exercise equipment.  I honestly cannot remember how many times I went through this cycle, repeating the same pattern and getting the same results.

 

Insanity – Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a difference results!

Albert Einstein

 

This was until I changed on the inside.  My Anti-Diet journey was a slow, purposeful one.  After years of trying numerous diets, suffering from bulimia and borderline anorexia, I was overweight and downtrodden.  I didn’t know it at the time but for me, hitting rock bottom was one of the best things that happened because at this lowest point I decided to ditch the diets as, for me, none of them had worked for long.  All that had happened was that it was me at war against food.  I was obsessed with it and spent all of my free mental space fighting between thinking about what I could or would eat next.  My only real happiness was when I was eating my favourite takeaway or snacking on delicious sugary or salty foods.  The rest of the time, I was in no man’s land with hunger in the pit of my stomach and the food demon on my shoulder constantly coaxing me to eat.  I can’t pin-point the exact moment that I changed but I do remember the absolute freedom I had felt (even though it was a bit scary at first).  I hadn’t realised the amount of mental energy I had been spending on dieting, not dieting, feeling depressed, counting calories/syns or points.  Dieting literally was the start, middle and end of every day for me and now, without it in my life, I may not have been slim, but I definitely felt freer and had more mental energy.  I had also found that not dieting had actually stabilised my weight because I was no longer bingeing or starving myself.  So, armed with this new found energy, I decided to purchase a treadmill.  This time, it was not an impulse buy, this time I:

 

  • Carefully researched the numerous choices I had
  • Thought about and wrote down my shortlist based upon what I thought I could endure (yes endure, I can’t say that I was overly enthusiastic but there was anticipation)
  • Set an intention to actually commit to using what I bought for at least a minimum of 3 months on a regular basis (2 times a week, every week for 20 minutes or more)
  • Purchased a journal where I put my commitment down in writing and created a grid where I would enter the date, the time I had run for and the distance I had covered

 

I was still apprehensive as I parted with my hard-earned cash but something just felt different.  I think it really helped that I was not dieting and was instead focusing on accepting and loving myself because this brought with it a huge sense of self trust.  I told myself that if I really, really hated the treadmill, it would be OK because I would eventually find something that I did like.  I had learned one very important thing:

 

If you take the option of giving up on your dream off the table  – you will start to see other possibilities and opportunities everywhere!!

The rest is history because buying the treadmill was the best decision I ever made and after the initial and inevitable resistance, the perseverance paid off and I was hooked!  I began looking forward to it most days (yes, I still have days when I am demotivated but now, I embrace them and don’t let a bad day make me give up forever!).

This is what my experience taught me about treadmills and why it is my BFF!!:

  • No matter the weather, you can still exercise
  • In the long run, it is much cheaper than paying for a gym
  • No time is wasted travelling to the gym
  • You can do as little or as much as you are capable of as no one is watching!
  • You don’t have to feel the pressure of keeping up with others in a gym environment
  • In the dark winter months, you can still feel safe running
  • It can help tone up your body
  • It will make you healthier
  • It will help you lose weight
  • It helps improve your mental health

 

If you are like I used to be and are once again considering buying a piece of home exercise commitment, I truly hope this blog will help you make the right decision for you.

 

WRITTEN BY SHERRY TAYLOR

AUTHOR OF THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE – 4 CRAZY STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Your job can make you put on weight!

 

 

 

Your job can make you put on weight!

Whether we like it or not, a large majority of us will spend most of our lives at work!  When put like this, it can be a real eye opener, I mean if you just stop to consider the fact that:

  1. We tend to see our co-workers more than our loved ones!
  2. We spend more time at the office/shop/site than at home!
  3. We build relationships at work more than in our private lives!

If then, we find ourselves in a situation where we dislike or worse, hate our work, this can have a disastrous effect on our lives and can lead to:

  1. Low self-esteem
  2. Depression
  3. Anxiety
  4. Comfort eating
  5. A lack of motivation for life in general
  6. Feelings of worthlessness
  7. Feelings of hopelessness
  8. Feelings of being stuck in life

These negative feelings can literally spiral out of control, negatively impacting the quality of our entire lives!!

AND – If you are someone who is also trying to lose weight then being in a destructive situation at work will make it that much harder if not impossible for you to achieve your goal.  You’re more likely to reach for food as a means of distraction and comfort and, without even knowing it you can become trapped in the vicious cycle of:

chart

The obvious answer to freeing yourself is to leave your job and find another BUT we all know that it’s not that easy.  In fact, as our jobs are our livelihood, very few of us have the luxury to even consider this option and, during times of economic crisis, it becomes even harder to even think about it.

What if there was another solution? Something you could put into practice right away that would begin to make you feel happier, more confident and help you to take back control of your job rather than letting it control you?  Surely this is worth a try?  If you’re even slightly curious read on!

What if I told you that you have the power to make your work situation instantly better by:

  1. Making the decision to face what the problems are at work such as;

 

  • Why do you hate your job and what can you do about it?
  • Do you have a problem with a certain person and if so, reaching out to them to talk?
  • Arranging a heart to heart with your boss.

 

  1. Deciding to behave differently for example;

 

  • Arriving on time or early
  • Volunteering to help others
  • Smiling more
  • Joining in on conversations
  • Having an open mind

 

  1. Becoming easier to manage by;

 

  • Not resenting an instruction from your boss
  • Accepting process changes
  • Not complaining as much
  • Trying to see the positives in any situation
  • Seeing your boss as a human being

 

  1. Giving everything you do 100% time, effort, focus and energy such as;

 

  • Completing tasks on time
  • Checking your work
  • Going the extra mile for your boss or client or co-worker
  • Offering help
  • Volunteering for training courses, additional responsibilities
  • Not leaving tasks half-done

 

When you approach your work in this way, you will likely find that:

  1. Your boss will react differently to you
  2. Your co-workers will notice
  3. You will feel happier
  4. You will experience pride and job satisfaction
  5. Your customers / clients will appreciate you
  6. You will learn more
  7. You will become an asset to your company

 

pexels-photo-3756679

Think about it, wouldn’t you like to feel happier and more appreciated?  Wouldn’t you like to look forward to going to work and experience the great feelings that true team work bring?

 

If the answer is yes to any of the above, begin today to make the changes necessary and prepare yourself for the explosion of good feelings that will follow.  If, after genuinely trying everything, you still hate your job, you will not have wasted your time as you will have evolved into someone better who will have the energy and determination to seek new opportunities where you will receive the recognition you deserve.

 

WRITTEN BY SHERRY TAYLOR

AUTHOR OF THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE – 4 CRAZY STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS!

 

 

 

 

 

Monthly Affirmations for weight loss success! – WELCOME SEPTEMBER!

 

 

The words we use to ourselves have a powerful effect on the outcome of our lives.  If we use negative words, we are likely to produce negative results.  The good news is that conversely, if we use positive words, we are more like to achieve positive results!

My Anti-Diet journey began with changing my thoughts.  I was a textbook case of someone who consumed negativity and, surprise, surprise, it happened to keep showing up in my life!  I went on a mission to change myself from the inside out and I could not have achieved my dramatic weight loss and maintained it if I hadn’t changed the words I used against myself.

If you are stuck in your weight loss journey and would like to try something new, something that does not take up too much time and something that just might work, download these affirmations.  There is one for each day of the coming month.

Remember, you do not have to believe what you are saying, you just have to commit to allowing yourself to think differently and to using the affirmations.

Good luck!!

September 2020 Affirmations

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

Words can help you lose weight!!

 

 

I was a complete disbeliever when I first came across affirmations and their supposed power to change our beliefs and to impact our lives.  I mean, ‘how can a bunch of words make a difference to my life?’  I’d thought.  The fact that affirmations made such huge promises stopped me from dismissing them completely because at that time in my life, I had hit rock bottom.  I was overweight and unhappy, very unhappy.  I had tried countless diets, joined in on multiple get-fit challenges and even dabbled in many faddy diets all to end up failing yet again.  I can now see that the place I was in was a case of extremely good fortune because at any other time, I would have laughed and turned my back on affirmations forever.  BUT that didn’t happen and I decided to further my research into the subject as I had nothing to lose anyway.

Before I delve deeper into the subject, it is important to define what affirmations really are.

Affirmations – The Basics

The dictionary definition is:

noun

the act or an instance of affirming; state of being affirmed.

the assertion that something exists or is true.

something that is affirmed; a statement or proposition that is declared to be true.

confirmation or ratification of the truth or validity of a prior judgment, decision, etc.

Law. a solemn declaration accepted instead of a statement under oath.

Source: https://www.dictionary.com/browse/affirmation

 

Affirmations Strategies

There are two separate strategies (ways of using) affirmations:

  1. Statement based affirmations such as ‘I am confident’ or ‘I can lose weight’.
  2. Present tense statements such as ‘I am losing weight’ or ‘I am reaching my weight loss goal’

 

Positive AND Negative affirmations

Affirmations can be positive or negative!  Here are some examples of each:

NEGATIVE AFFIRMATIONS

I can’t lose weight

I hate fruit

I am lazy

It never works for me

 

POSITIVE AFFIRMATIONS

I can lose weight

I love fruit

I am motivated

This always works for me

 

As you can see from the above, an affirmation in the context of this blog is a statement or thought we say to ourselves which can either be positive OR negative.  These statements or thoughts can become so ingrained in us that we can begin to believe them to be true.   This belief becomes a part of our personality and impacts the choices we make and the behaviours we choose to adopt.  As

It was the realisation that negative affirmations existed which really caught my attention and finally convinced me that I might be onto something powerful here.  I knew that I had a negative self-image, I knew I believed I could never lose weight and I knew that I repeatedly called myself a ‘dieting nightmare!’  but, up until that point in my life, I had never considered if there was a link between these beliefs and my dieting failures!  Suddenly, the pieces began to fit together and my research gained momentum.  I learned that negative affirmations could:

 

Stop you reaching your goals

Keep you stuck in life

Stop you from even trying certain things

Cause you to self-sabotage your progress

 

I was now becoming convinced I was a text book victim of negative affirmations and had to know for certain.   I knew it would take effort and energy to do this but my desperation to lose weight gave me the impetus I needed.   So, on purpose, on paper, I wrote down all the things I said about myself and all the things I believed and thought about myself.  I was shocked to find, amongst many, the following:

  1. I am not good enough
  2. I am too scared to change
  3. I might make things worse
  4. What if it doesn’t work
  5. I can’t lose weight
  6. I always fail

I then looked at the results I was achieving and could clearly see the connection between them and the self-affirming beliefs I held about myself.  Even with this realisation, I remained skeptical, but it had sparked an interest I could not dismiss.  More than that, it had inadvertently made me conscious of what I was saying to myself.  I found that, each time I had a negative thought about myself, I was actually aware of it.  Where previously I would have mindlessly had these thoughts and said those words without thinking, now every thought and every word would work its way into my conscious self and point-blank stare me in the face!  Even though I still didn’t truly believe that mere words and thoughts could have an adverse affect on my life and lead me to have problems losing weight, I figured that there was no harm in trying to change them because nothing else had worked.  I sat down and scrutinised my list and decided that I would arm myself with POSITIVE affirmations to replace the words I used and the thoughts I had:

NEGATIVE POSITIVE
I am not good enough I am good enough
I am too scared to change I can change
I might make things worse I might make things better
What if it doesn’t work What if it does work
I can’t lose weight I can lose weight
I always fail I can win

 

From then on, I committed to replacing negative thinking with positive thinking as soon as a thought came to mind or a word slipped out.  At first, it felt strange and really odd.   I felt as if I was faking it and, to be honest I was, because I really didn’t believe the positive statements I had written down.  Despite not believing though, I persevered and, in time, it became easier and easier to replace my thoughts.  Before long, it was almost an automatic response and then, without realising it, I virtually stopped using negative affirmations.  I began to notice that on the days negative affirmations did manage to seep back into my life, I was experiencing problems or just that my mood was low.  I could see that on these days I naturally felt less motivated and lacked energy, which increased my use of negative affirmations!    To counteract this, I committed to using more positive affirmations on those days.  In time, my confidence grew and the weight loss results I was achieving began to change.  I lost weight, had more energy and my emotions stabilised.  I sincerely put a large part of my success on positive affirmations and continue to use them to this day.

 

Change negative thoughts into firm positive self-talk

 

If you find that you struggle to lose weight, have low levels of motivation and are trapped in the vicious cycle of the dieting trap, why don’t you give affirmations a try?

 

Here are 4 easy steps to get you started:

 

  1. AUDIT – Audit your thoughts and words

 

Identify and write down the thoughts you have about yourself and the statements you use.

 

  1. CREATE – Create positive thoughts and words

Next to each negative thought or statement you use, create a positive one to counter-act it (see examples above).

  1. AWARENESS – Become aware each time you find yourself using negative affirmations

 

Each day, commit to becoming aware every time you catch yourself saying or thinking something negative to yourself

 

  1. REPLACE – Pick an appropriate, positive statement you have written down

As soon as you find that you have used a negative affirmation, replace it with a positive one.  For extra potency, repeat the positive affirmation two or three times.

WRITTEN BY SHERRY TAYLOR

AUTHOR OF THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE – 4 CRAZY STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS!

 

 

 

Monthly Affirmations for weight loss success!

 

The words we use to ourselves have a powerful effect on the outcome of our lives.  If we use negative words, we are likely to produce negative results.  The good news is that conversely, if we use positive words, we are more like to achieve positive results!

My Anti-Diet journey began with changing my thoughts.  I was a textbook case of someone who consumed negativity and, surprise, surprise, it happened to keep showing up in my life!  I went on a mission to change myself from the inside out and I could not have achieved my dramatic weight loss and maintained it if I hadn’t changed the words I used against myself.

If you are stuck in your weight loss journey and would like to try something new, something that does not take up too much time and something that just might work, download these affirmations.  There is one for each day of the coming month.

Remember, you do not have to believe what you are saying, you just have to commit to allowing yourself to think differently and to using the affirmations.

Good luck!!

August 2020 Affirmations

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

Monthly Affirmations for weight loss success!

The words we use to ourselves have a powerful effect on the outcome of our lives.  If we use negative words, we are likely to produce negative results.  The good news is that conversely, if we use positive words, we are more like to achieve positive results!

My Anti-Diet journey began with changing my thoughts.  I was a textbook case of someone who consumed negativity and, surprise, surprise, it happened to keep showing up in my life!  I went on a mission to change myself from the inside out and I could not have achieved my dramatic weight loss and maintained it if I hadn’t changed the words I used against myself.

If you are stuck in your weight loss journey and would like to try something new, something that does not take up too much time and something that just might work, download these affirmations.  There is one for each day of the coming month.

Remember, you do not have to believe what you are saying, you just have to commit to allowing yourself to think differently and to using the affirmations.

Good luck!!

July 2020 Affirmations

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

How to kid your brain into doing things that move you TOWARDS your weight loss goal!

 

How to kid your brain into doing things that move you TOWARDS your weight loss goal!

 

Our brains are hardwired to work out how to give us what we want and what we desire.  You can’t kid your brain into wanting to eat fruit if you don’t WANT to eat fruit.  You can’t make yourself exercise if you don’t WANT to.  Your brain will simply find a thousand reasons not to do those things because it knows it’s not what you truly want.

 

BUT, here’s the good news!  You CAN kid yourself into believing that you do truly want these things and so making your brain more likely to help you rather than hold you back.  The way to achieve this is simply by constant affirmation of what you would like to do but don’t want to.  So, say you would like to start to make better food choices but find yourself always reaching for the cake instead of fruit or chips instead of vegetables even though you know that eating the fruit or vegetables will take you towards your weight loss goal faster.  Here is a step by step way to change this behaviour:

person holding cupcake with white icing

  1. Acknowledge the behaviour – It is a known fact that we need to acknowledge something before we can change it. So, from now on, every time you make choices about what you want to eat make it a point to accept and acknowledge the decision you have made without judgement.
  2. Think small – Don’t attempt to change a habit of a lifetime overnight. Be prepared that you are likely to keep repeating old patterns over and over again and that it’s perfectly OK to fall many times.  Just commit to not giving up and persisting.
  3. Remember this – It’s OK if you do not even truly want the change of behaviour or only want it so that you can reach your weight loss goal as this technique will increase your chances of making a positive behaviour change either way. It’s natural to feel a bit of a ‘fake’ in the beginning so accept this but don’t let it stop you.
  4. Affirm the new ‘want’ – Every day and as often as you can repeat an affirmation that promotes the new ‘want’. In our example we want to begin to make healthier food choices so great affirmations for this are:
    1. I am nourishing my body
    2. I love fruit
    3. I love vegetables
  5. Re-affirm the ‘want’ – Every time you eat fruit, vegetables, nuts or any other scientifically proven food to be better for your body repeat your affirmations:
    1. This is nourishing my body
    2. This fruit is delicious
    3. This vegetable is delicious

 

‘practice makes perfect’

With perseverance and practice, you will gradually and permanently be able to make a huge change in your mindset.  You will start to make better choices without feeling as if you are missing out on life and the enjoyment food has to offer.  You still eat cake, chips etc, but there will be more balance in the food choices that you make VOLUNTARILY.

 

Good luck!!

 

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle, 4 Crazy Steps to Weight Loss Success!

 

 

7 Unbelievable Ideas for one on Valentine’s Day!

pexels-photo-266642
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

So, Valentine’s day is fast approaching and you don’t have a date.  Everyone around you is excited, they’re taking days off work to go away for a long weekend with their significant other, booking dinner dates, buying cards, ordering flowers & chocolates, the list is endless but I think you get the picture!  All this flurry of delight is making you feel even worse because so as far as the eye can see, there is no valentine lurking on the horizon.  What makes you really wish you could disappear is when someone asks ‘so, what are you doing for Valentines?’.  For a moment, you think about lying but the effort involved is just too much and you really can’t be bothered making up some story that you’ll have to elaborate on, so you say meekly ‘nothing planned at the mo’ to which you are rewarded with a pitying glance and a ‘oh, sorry’ before they move on the conversation with someone who DOES have a date, someone who IS doing something!

 

So, what can you do if you are this person, if you don’t have plans and if it’s making you miserable?  Obviously, if you are happy with the situation, you need read no further and it’s absolutely OK because this has been written for someone who isn’t happy about it.  Before we go on, let me tell you, I have been there, I have walked in your shoes and I was not happy about it!  I found that when I was overweight, I would validate my life based on the opinion of others.  I felt that because I was the odd one out, I would have to fit in with THEM and not the other way round and obviously not a compromise with either at all!  I am ashamed to admit that I made up a few stories just so I didn’t feel so left out and because I wanted to avoid all the ‘there’s plenty of fish in the sea’, ‘maybe next year’ etc, etc.  I have pretended to:

  • Have a date
  • Been given flowers
  • Sent myself a card at work

Just admitting this makes me cringe, even now after all these years!

My Anti-Diet journey though, helped me to release these absolutely ridiculous beliefs and expectations because how can one day make us feel so inadequate.  When you look deeper, it is not the day that is making you feel that way, it is YOU.  Knowing this basic truth will free you from ever having to pretend to fit in again!  Once I understood and embraced the life principle that self-love opens every door, I was able to see the situation from a different angle.  It was as if, for the first time, I had put on glasses and could see the world clearly!  If I could sum it up in two words they would be ‘life changing’.  This realization gave birth to the creation of a road map that was to become The Anti-Diet Lifestyle which would eventually lead me to complete freedom from dieting!!

I kid you not people, once you begin to love and care for yourself, once you begin to truly believe that you matter, you will start to see life in a way you have never seen it before.  You will be able to experience life in a way that you never thought would ever be possible.  The amazing thing about it as well was that it opened up my life to so many possibilities and it did so immediately.  It no longer mattered that I was a single mum struggling to make ends meet because with my clearer vision, I could see opportunities where once only darkness existed. So let Valentine’s Day be your catalyst, let it transport you to the new you that can see options instead of dead ends, the one who can see hope where before only despair lived.

Here are 2 powerful, but unbelievable self-care tips

  • Moisturize!! – I know, it sounds absurd right but please bear with me because this is one of the most powerful ways I know of re-connecting with your body and making peace with it. Once you experience it’s benefits, you will make it a lifetime habit and anytime I find myself slipping or feeling negative about myself, I return to this tip with a vengeance!  In fact, 3 days out of 7, I will do this anyway.

The brilliant thing about it is that it is available to anyone and it doesn’t matter if you have a hectic life or not.  Here’s all you need to do to gain the amazing benefits:

  1. Buy your favourite body lotion, one with a smell and texture that you love and that suits your skin type.
  2. Ideally after a bath or shower, moisturize your entire body slowly and purposefully and as you do, thank your body for everything that it does – ‘thank you feet, thank you shins, thank you knees etc, etc!!’

This simple action, done regularly, will change your beliefs about your body in an extremely positive way.

  • Take a walk in nature – Never underestimate the healing and energizing power of mother nature!
    1. Put on your favourite music, the type that will put you in a relaxed state of mind. Try to avoid upbeat sounds as they will not have the effect that we looking to achieve for this purpose.
    2. Go to a park, woodland (if it’s safe) or a public garden near you.
    3. Walk purposefully and this means, look at your surroundings, smell the environment, stop to look at flowers, shrubs etc, notice any wildlife.
    4. To quieten any negative inner chatter (your life is a mess, you’re single again, no one will like you) repeatedly say a positive affirmation about yourself. Here are some that you could try: ‘I love myself’, ‘I have a great life’, ‘I can achieve anything’.

Your brain will believe what it hears no matter who is telling it.  Negative in, negative out.  Positive in, positive out!

Valentines Day

On the day itself, set your intention to have the most amazing day, a perfect beginning would be to write down at least 10 things you love about yourself.  Let you imagination run wild with this one!  Remember to really see it as a day of celebration, of a day devoted to you.

Plan Ahead – Arm yourself with options then pick one or more that appeal to you!  

Here are 7 ideas about things you can do on Valentine’s day

  1. Watch an uplifting film. The power of the big screen should and must not be taken for granted.  Make use of it at every opportunity in fact.  The key is to pick the right movie or show because choosing the wrong one can be a disaster.  It’s so simple really – a positive and uplifting movie or show will leave you feeling great and a negative and depressing or violent and vicious film will leave your heart in tatters!
  2. Have a spa day. Read my blog ‘How to regularly benefit from the ‘spa’ effect’  for ideas on how and why to invest your time and resources on ‘ME’ time.  The benefits are not only emotional but physical too so it’s a win-win!
  3. Go out with friends. The company of friends is like a warm blanket on a cold day or an icy drink on a sweltering hot afternoon – It will comfort you and it will make you feel safe.  It then needs little explaining that choosing to spend Valentine’s Day with friends is an amazing alternative to feeling left out while others seem to be having such a fantastic time.  Be very careful who you choose to spend your day with though as if you decide to ‘third wheel’ with a friend and her other half, you may feel worse having done that as it may be too much if your heart is especially fragile this year.
  4. Read inspirational quotes, books, articles. This is a habit you can adopt on the day devoted to love but also something you should build into your daily life.  Doing this will not only motivate and inspire you but it will also make you feel ‘whole’ and ‘complete’ whether you have a significant other or not.
  5. Buy yourself a gift. The very act of buying ourselves a gift, something we really love will instantly make the feel good hormones surge through our bodies.  It does not need to cost the earth either as long as it is something you really like.
  6. Take a walk in nature – I often do this to solve a number of issues in my life and as an instant pick me up and doing this on Valentine’s Day is no exception.
  7. Talk to a friend or family member – Make sure you choose someone who is positive rather than negative. I once had a friend who’s mum was always pressurizing her to get married and have kids.  This is not the person you need to speak to on Valentine’s Day!

If you do long to meet someone, know there is nothing wrong with that.  Also know that you attract what and who you think you deserve because knowing this will affirm that if you love and care for yourself, you will attract someone that loves and cares for you.

So, put a smile on your face, know that when you see your life through the lens of  extreme self-love you put yourself in a strong position to jet set your life to success.  Begin, begin today and you’ll be full of positivity and motivation by the time Valentine’s Day arrives!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle, 4 Crazy Steps to Weight Loss Success!

 

 

 

 

Self love opens every door

Farming for weight loss?!!

scenic view of agricultural field against sky during sunset
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Yes, the title of this blog is correct and NO mistake has been made.  You really CAN farm for weight loss!!  So firstly let’s explore what farming is so that I can explain how it can work for anyone wishing to feel better and lose weight.  According to https://www.thefreedictionary.com/farming, a simple definition of farming (land) is:

To cultivate or produce a crop on (land)

In order to produce a crop on land, you will need fertile soil, water and sunshine.  This will mean that, to produce the highest quality crop, the farmer will have to:

  • Till the land
  • Sow the seeds, making sure there is enough space for each plant to grow and spread without being suffocated by the plant next to it
  • Feed it with all the nutrients the crops being grown need
  • Make sure that the crops are sufficiently watered.
  • Remove weeds as they appear
  • Hire the right people if his farm is too big for him to handle alone

These are the things the farmer can control and if he takes care of them, the chances of the crops flourishing are high.

There are however things the farmer can’t control such as the weather conditions.  If it’s a cold summer, or the frost is late, or there isn’t much rain or sunshine, then the crops are likely to suffer no matter what the farmer does.

It is therefore very important to understand the aspects that can’t be controlled and those that can.  In some cases, the lack of sunshine can be dealt with by growing crops in a greenhouse environment where artificial lights can replace sunlight and of course, irrigation can take away the problem of a lack of rain.

However, if the farmer wants a good crop, he would not:

  • Take out his frustrations about bad weather on his crops by not watering them
  • Kick his crops if they were not flourishing as and when he wanted them to
  • Pull out his crops if he was angry at a situation
  • Stop feeding his crops because he was upset
  • Feed his crops with things known to stop them from growing
  • Feed his crops with things known to be bad for them

So, how does this relate to weight loss?  Simple really, if we can begin to see ourselves as the farmer that wants to produce a bountiful crop.  If that were the case, then, for us to achieve this, we would need to:

  • Till the land
    • Look after our environment and change it if it is not a healthy one. If you dread going to work or coming home, this is a very clear indication that your environment needs your attention.
  • Sow the seeds, making sure there is enough space for each plant to grow and spread without being suffocated by the plant next to it.
    • Take action each day by sowing the seeds of good habits. A regular five-minute walk, a commitment to eat our 5 a day fruit and veg and to regularly feed our mind with positive, inspirational thoughts.  Giving ourselves space to make mistakes but not giving up.
  • Feed it with all the nutrients the crops being grown need
    • Continually surround ourselves with positivity, letting go of blame, forgiving ourselves and others.
  • Make sure that the crops are sufficiently watered.
    • Making sure we find the time to relax, not feeling guilty for saying no, taking care of our needs and generously loving ourselves.
  • Remove weeds as they appear
    • Regularly tend to things and people in our environment that are negative, hurt us or are a hindrance.
  • Hire the right people if his farm is too big for him to handle alone
    • We should try and build a support network around us for when we are need of help and guidance. This can be in the form of family, friends, colleagues, positive role models online or self-help books.

Just like the farmer, we would also need to consider the things we cannot control such as:

  • If we fall ill
  • If those around us fall ill
  • The loss of someone close to us
  • The loss of a job
  • Unexpected home emergency

When these things happen, just like the farmer, we will need to exercise some form of acceptance of what is and ease the problems as much as is in our control.  Know that sometimes, the crops may suffer but that you can always plant more seeds once the situation improves.  It’s also about letting go of controlling things that we cannot conrol so that for example, if we are ill, we allow ourselves to heal and recover before we begin our journey again, without a shred of bad feelings towards us.

And remember, the farmer would not:

  • Take out his frustrations about bad weather on his crops by not watering them
    • Take out our frustrations about a bad event in our lives on us by mistreating ourselves. Instead of abusing and hating ourselves, we should look at the root cause of the bad event and process it from that angle.
  • Kick his crops if they were not flourishing as and when he wanted them to
    • Be harsh on ourselves or hating ourselves when or if we fail. We should learn to forgive ourselves and learn from any mistakes we make.
  • Pull out his crops if he was angry at a situation
    • Be unkind to ourselves because of a situation out of our control. If something bad happens to us, we should make it our business to be even kinder to ourselves than before.
  • Stop feeding his crops because he was upset
    • Mistreat our body when we are unhappy by binge or comfort eating. Instead, we should allow ourselves to heal without self-judgement by approaching our life from a point of extreme self-care and self-love.
  • Feed his crops with things known to stop them from growing
    • We need to be very mindful of what we put inside us and this is not just about food. We also need to consider what we feed our mind with (what we watch, what we allow, what we do etc.)
  • Feed his crops with things known to be bad for them
    • We should remove ourselves from negative people and events as much as we possibly can. If we tolerate these people or situations long-term, our mental and physical health will suffer.

So, why don’t you start looking at your life in this way?  In every moment, if you are stuck and don’t know what to do, think like the farmer that wants to produce the perfect crop, what would he/she do?  I do this often and it really helps to make the decisions for me.

As with everything in life, balance is obviously the key.  Sometimes we haven’t the strength to do what we know is the best thing and we are left feeling guilty or bad about ourselves.  Learn not to fall into this trap and imagine that even though the farmer was ill and couldn’t tend to the crops that day, that he/she will be up again tomorrow to begin where he/she left off.  That way, the guilt and pressure do not build up and you also do not fall into the trap of giving up by thinking, ‘well, I didn’t keep up my commitment, so what’s the point of carrying on, I might as well just give up’.

If you keep ‘farming’ long enough, you will produce your bountiful crop!!  Get on those tractors people!!

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to regularly benefit from the ‘spa’ effect!

 

Since I can remember, I have always totally enjoyed a spa day.  It gives me an opportunity to relax, it’s a timeout from daily life, it’s a complete change of scenery and the treatments make me feel positively refreshed and chilled out.  When I leave, I have this light and happy feeling as if I’m walking on air and that I can and will achieve my goals.   The longer I’m there, the better I feel both physically AND mentally!   It really is a win-win and I’m all about finding and making the most of a win-win opportunity.  Why is it then that a spa day can have these amazing benefits?  The physical aspect is obvious, the treatments are designed to relax us, the scents and oils themselves can have almost immediate well-being benefits and the massages literally aim to relax our muscles and ease tension.  The mental benefits are less apparent but, from research and experience I have found that it has much to do with the fact that when we feel physically well, our mental health is positively impacted as a direct result from it.  The other reasons are that we are able to completely switch off from the hustle and bustle of daily life and escape to a beautifully scented, lighted and aesthetically pleasing surroundings (many spas are in natural surroundings, have beautiful gardens, smell heavenly and are covered in positive pictures, images and paintings).  Oh, and I almost forgot to mention the inspirational music which alone has the magical power to relax and heal our troubled body and soul!

The problem with spa days is that they are not easily accessible and here are some reasons why:

  • You have to take time off work or to give up a precious weekend (meaning chores and responsibilities are delayed or not attended to in time)
  • The hassle of travel to and from the spa, especially if you do not drive or have the use of a car
  • The high price of spa weekends themselves make them impossible to use at all for some people
  • The cost of travel to and from the spa
  • If you have young children, there is the added cost and hassle around finding childcare

So, with so many benefits of a spa day or weekend, what can you do to gain the benefits without the possible problems they may present?  The answer to this question is that you can create a very similar experience in your own home!  If you have like-minded friends, it will be even easier as you can apply treatments for one another and also the social aspect of this can be super healing and can fight against the negative effects of stress.  Here’s what to do:

Find the right place

If you have a spare room full of junk, make the effort to clear it as this would be a perfect place to create your home spa.  If not, then you can temporarily turn any room into one.  Try to pick somewhere you can close off the rest of the household from so that you can appreciate the full benefits of some quiet, quality time. You will also need to make sure that the bathroom is free throughout the time as well.

Arm yourself with the ingredients of a great spa experience

Here’s a perfect recipe:

Face mask

Exfoliating scrub for body and face

Hair mask / conditioner

Body moisturising cream / oil

Nail oil

Cuticle cream

Emery board

Scented candles

Incense sticks

Soothing music

Inspirational quotes, books

Bathrobe

Slippers

Anything else that appeals to you!

Find the right time

Set aside as much time as you can.  Ideally, block out the entire day but, if that is not practical, then plan for as much time as you can get away with.   If you only have an hour or so, decide on the treatments that you’ll easily be able to fit in without having to rush.  After all, it would be completely pointless if you ended up feeling stressed out trying to fit in everything and failing!

Set the scene

bath bathroom bathtub indoors
Photo by Burst on Pexels.com

Be sure to create a calming atmosphere.  Try to keep the lighting low and subdued.  Put on some calming music that you love, light candles or incense sticks and, while waiting for treatments, read inspirational books or your favourite novel.

If you have willing friends

You can really make the most of it if you have friends that are interested as you can help each other by applying treatments, having a heart to heart and sharing ideas.

If you have kids

Not to worry, you can still try and have a spa experience but with a few modifications!  Try and enlist the kids to help you or simply join in!  It can become a family treat if you are very lucky!

Create a routine

Once you begin, schedule in this time on a regular basis.  If you are lucky, have your spa experience weekly but if free-time is scarce for you, put a monthly date in your diary.

You will not regret scheduling in this very precious ‘ME’ time.  The benefits far outweigh the effort involved in carving out the time in a busy life for this purpose.  Besides the physical benefits, you will be telling yourself subconsciously that you matter which is an act that should not be underestimated.  When we have a high self-esteem and feel valued, the results we see in our lives and the lifestyle choices we make have a much higher chance of being positive.  So, what are you waiting for, start scheduling your spa days!!

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

How to eat this festive season!

Temptation is everywhere you look; in the shops that are full of every treat that you can think of and even some you can’t; it’s being passed around at work ‘go on it’s Christmas’ they say; its in the 3 course meals at a works do or at a social gathering; in short IT’s  EVERYWHERE!!!  When I was struggling to lose weight, my motto was simple ‘It’s Christmas so I’m going to treat myself’ and this basically gave me the free reign to stuff myself silly for two whole weeks before I landed back on earth with a hard bump and a weight gain that left me feeling totally lethargic and to add to the misery, self-loathing was waiting for me around the corner.  I would view others with envy as they could seemingly eat anything they wanted and still slip into the little black dress!!

So, with the festivities in full swing already, here are some do’s and don’ts that will help you navigate your way merrily through the season:

 

DON’T say ‘Oh well, it’s Christmas so I am entitled to let go and enjoy myself’.   When you say this, you are just giving yourself the go ahead to eat until you feel numb.  Your mind goes into overdrive and you’re an 8-year-old in a candy store wanting everything in sight.  In the back of your mind is the thought that you’ve really got to make the most of it before the season is over and when you’ll need to be ‘good’ and start denying yourself again.  Sure, you’ll enjoy the first cake, or pie or pudding BUT, after a while, it just turns into a 2-week binge and believe me, your body and mind will NOT thank you for it!

DO say ‘I just love the food at this time of year!’.  When you say this, there is no agenda, there is no drama and there is no need to make a ‘deal’ with yourself by deciding to be ‘good’ later.  There is also no need for bargaining with yourself ‘It’s Christmas, so it’s OK’.  This approach gives you the ‘green’ light to be excited by the festive foods and the permission to enjoy them.

 

DON’T say ‘I’ll just have one and then be good for the rest of the time’.  This approach will immediately have you craving everything in sight after you’ve eaten the ‘one’ thing that you wanted.  Human nature is such that the minute we deny ourselves anything, we begin to crave for it with a vengeance!

DO say ‘That looks amazing, let me have one’.  Saying this produces no pressure whatsoever and lets you enjoy whatever ‘it’ is.  There is no need to eat the entire plate as you are free to have a few more if you fancy it.  There is also no bad feeling afterwards when you realise that you cannot have anymore and have to now start to deny yourself.

 

DON’T say ‘I’ll have a blowout today and eat nothing tomorrow’.  Firstly, you will feel guilty as you eat whatever it is as you have already told yourself that it is forbidden and you are going to punish yourself afterwards by starving or ‘being good’. Secondly, you will feel panic as soon as you have finished eating because then you know the hard work of denying yourself has to begin.

DO say ‘I’m going to have this meal and really enjoy it’. Doing this let’s you relax and eat without guilt.  It lets you enjoy what you are eating without any feelings of doom that you will have at the thought of paying the huge price for eating it later on.

 

DON’T eat it in a frenzy where you just stuff your face without stopping to taste what it is.  In this way, all that happens is that after the first couple of bites, you do not even remember eating or tasting whatever it is that you wanted.  Within seconds, the food is gone and in its place is a hunger for more and guilt of the weight that you might put on.

DO eat slowly, purposefully and intentionally.  Notice the smell, the texture and the taste of every bite.  Do not feel guilty for having another, in fact, tell yourself that it is perfectly OK to do that.  Part of the problem with overeating is when we feel time is limited and that if we overindulge, we will have to pay for it later.  Another benefit of eating slowly is that you will be letting your body catch up with the feelings of satisfaction which allow you to feel full.  Many times, we are so busy feeling guilty and eating hurriedly that our body doesn’t stand a chance to let us know if it is full or not.

 

All the DON’T’s will do is result in you feeling bad about yourself and eating far more than you need to feel satisfied.

The Do’s have the opposite affect because they set you free to enjoy whatever food it is that you would like.  Believe me, the more you deny yourself, the more you will eat.  The reverse is also true, the more you give yourself the permission to have your desired food, the less you will end up eating and the more satisfied you will feel.

So, to sum up: when you are faced with ANY situation where you want to eat something over the festive period, give yourself FULL permission to do so because the more you deny yourself, bargain with yourself or feel guilty about it, the MORE you will eat.

HAPPY EATING EVERYONE!!

 

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Grief at Christmas- The Loss of your wife

grayscale photography of wedding couple
Photo by Agung Prakoso BayuAdi on Pexels.com

Christmas is a very emotional time.  It is full of hope, anticipation, love and joy!  We can forget the cold weather as dark nights are lit up with Christmas trees, fairy lights and decorations.  Not many people can walk past a house that’s lit up so brightly and still feel gloomy.  In fact, if you’re feeling a little miserable, I thoroughly recommend spending some time looking at festively decorated houses, shops and high streets.

For some of us though, Christmas brings with it a sadness that cannot be blown away by the beautiful sight of decorated tress nor the lights shining brightly all around us.  If you are grieving then this time of year only accentuates the sadness but highlights the loss of those that are missing.  If this is you, don’t feel that you have to force the happiness and pretend that everything’s OK.  In fact, when we do this, we inadvertently make things worse not only for ourselves but those around us.  The Anti-Diet Lifestyle promotes the complete expression of our thoughts and feelings because it is only then can we release the pain and honour who we really are and what is close to us.  Know also that grief has no timeline, agenda or format and that we all need to understand this if we are to help others and ourselves.  Also, despite what others tell you, you do NOT have to get over it.  It is also OK if you feel that the time is right for you to ‘move through’ the process and that you do not have to feel guilty for letting yourself enjoy life and all that Christmas has to offer.  This does not make you selfish or unfeeling any more than being sad makes you a killjoy or ‘black cloud’.  Let yourself feel and be what your heart is telling you.  If you are not sure, stop for a moment and really let your inner self guide you to your true feelings.

The loss of a wife is not only painful but also frightening.  It can leave you feeling so empty and in a state of despair.  I wrote this poem to recognise the grief and pain a grief like this brings.  If you have suffered a loss like this, my thoughts are with you.  May you find peace this Christmas.

 

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Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

Grief – When your Nan was your Mum

monochrome photo of woman near plants
Photo by Paul Theodor Oja on Pexels.com

Christmas is a very emotional time.  It is full of hope, anticipation, love and joy!  We can forget the cold weather as dark nights are lit up with Christmas trees, fairy lights and decorations.  Not many people can walk past a house that’s lit up so brightly and still feel gloomy.  In fact, if you’re feeling a little miserable, I thoroughly recommend spending some time looking at festively decorated houses, shops and high streets.

For some of us though, Christmas brings with it a sadness that cannot be blown away by the beautiful sight of decorated tress nor the lights shining brightly all around us.  If you are grieving then this time of year only accentuates the sadness but highlights the loss of those that are missing.  If this is you, don’t feel that you have to force the happiness and pretend that everything’s OK.  In fact, when we do this, we inadvertently make things worse not only for ourselves but those around us.  The Anti-Diet Lifestyle promotes the complete expression of our thoughts and feelings because it is only then can we release the pain and honour who we really are and what is close to us.  Know also that grief has no timeline, agenda or format and that we all need to understand this if we are to help others and ourselves.  Also, despite what others tell you, you do NOT have to get over it.  It is also OK if you feel that the time is right for you to ‘move through’ the process and that you do not have to feel guilty for letting yourself enjoy life and all that Christmas has to offer.  This does not make you selfish or unfeeling any more than being sad makes you a killjoy or ‘black cloud’.  Let yourself feel and be what your heart is telling you.  If you are not sure, stop for a moment and really let your inner self guide you to your true feelings.

When you lose someone who brought you up like a mother should, then that loss is the same as losing your mother.   A mum is your number one fan, your life support and the person you can confide in.  When that person is lost, you feel lost.  I wrote this poem to recognise the grief and pain a grief like this brings.  If you have suffered a loss like this, my thoughts are with you.  May you find peace this Christmas.

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Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

 

Grieving for your husband at Christmas

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Christmas is a very emotional time.  It is full of hope, anticipation, love and joy!  We can forget the cold weather as dark nights are lit up with Christmas trees, fairy lights and decorations.  Not many people can walk past a house that’s lit up so brightly and still feel gloomy.  In fact, if you’re feeling a little miserable, I thoroughly recommend spending some time looking at festively decorated houses, shops and high streets.

For some of us though, Christmas brings with it a sadness that cannot be blown away by the beautiful sight of decorated tress nor the lights shining brightly all around us.  If you are grieving then this time of year only accentuates the sadness but highlights the loss of those that are missing.  If this is you, don’t feel that you have to force the happiness and pretend that everything’s OK.  In fact, when we do this, we inadvertently make things worse not only for ourselves but those around us.  The Anti-Diet Lifestyle promotes the complete expression of our thoughts and feelings because it is only then can we release the pain and honour who we really are and what is close to us.  Know also that grief has no timeline, agenda or format and that we all need to understand this if we are to help others and ourselves.  Also, despite what others tell you, you do NOT have to get over it.  It is also OK if you feel that the time is right for you to ‘move through’ the process and that you do not have to feel guilty for letting yourself enjoy life and all that Christmas has to offer.  This does not make you selfish or unfeeling any more than being sad makes you a killjoy or ‘black cloud’.  Let yourself feel and be what your heart is telling you.  If you are not sure, stop for a moment and really let your inner self guide you to your true feelings.

The loss of a husband is inexplicable.  It doesn’t matter if the loss was sudden or expected because the pain that it brings is inevitable. I wrote this poem to recognise the grief and pain a grief like this brings.  If you have suffered a loss like this, my thoughts are with you.  May you find peace this Christmas.

artwork_Mr_vector-04

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

Grieving for your husband at Christmas

couple standing near body of water
Photo by Irina Iriser on Pexels.com

Christmas is a very emotional time.  It is full of hope, anticipation, love and joy!  We can forget the cold weather as dark nights are lit up with Christmas trees, fairy lights and decorations.  Not many people can walk past a house that’s lit up so brightly and still feel gloomy.  In fact, if you’re feeling a little miserable, I thoroughly recommend spending some time looking at festively decorated houses, shops and high streets.

For some of us though, Christmas brings with it a sadness that cannot be blown away by the beautiful sight of decorated tress nor the lights shining brightly all around us.  If you are grieving then this time of year only accentuates the sadness but highlights the loss of those that are missing.  If this is you, don’t feel that you have to force the happiness and pretend that everything’s OK.  In fact, when we do this, we inadvertently make things worse not only for ourselves but those around us.  The Anti-Diet Lifestyle promotes the complete expression of our thoughts and feelings because it is only then can we release the pain and honour who we really are and what is close to us.  Know also that grief has no timeline, agenda or format and that we all need to understand this if we are to help others and ourselves.  Also, despite what others tell you, you do NOT have to get over it.  It is also OK if you feel that the time is right for you to ‘move through’ the process and that you do not have to feel guilty for letting yourself enjoy life and all that Christmas has to offer.  This does not make you selfish or unfeeling any more than being sad makes you a killjoy or ‘black cloud’.  Let yourself feel and be what your heart is telling you.  If you are not sure, stop for a moment and really let your inner self guide you to your true feelings.

The loss of a husband is inexplicable.  It doesn’t matter if the loss was sudden or expected because the pain that it brings is inevitable. I wrote this poem to recognise the grief and pain a grief like this brings.  If you have suffered a loss like this, my thoughts are with you.  May you find peace this Christmas.

artwork_Mr_vector-03

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

 

 

Grieving for your Dad at Christmas

light sunset people water
Photo by Negative Space on Pexels.com

 

Christmas is a very emotional time.  It is full of hope, anticipation, love and joy!  We can forget the cold weather as dark nights are lit up with Christmas trees, fairy lights and decorations.  Not many people can walk past a house that’s lit up so brightly and still feel gloomy.  In fact, if you’re feeling a little miserable, I thoroughly recommend spending some time looking at festively decorated houses, shops and high streets.

For some of us though, Christmas brings with it a sadness that cannot be blown away by the beautiful sight of decorated tress nor the lights shining brightly all around us.  If you are grieving then this time of year only accentuates the sadness but highlights the loss of those that are missing.  If this is you, don’t feel that you have to force the happiness and pretend that everything’s OK.  In fact, when we do this, we inadvertently make things worse not only for ourselves but those around us.  The Anti-Diet Lifestyle promotes the complete expression of our thoughts and feelings because it is only then can we release the pain and honour who we really are and what is close to us.  Know also that grief has no timeline, agenda or format and that we all need to understand this if we are to help others and ourselves.  Also, despite what others tell you, you do NOT have to get over it.  It is also OK if you feel that the time is right for you to ‘move through’ the process and that you do not have to feel guilty for letting yourself enjoy life and all that Christmas has to offer.  This does not make you selfish or unfeeling any more than being sad makes you a killjoy or ‘black cloud’.  Let yourself feel and be what your heart is telling you.  If you are not sure, stop for a moment and really let your inner self guide you to your true feelings.

The loss of a father is hugely painful and can create a deep wound in our hearts that lasts a lifetime.  I wrote this poem to recognise the grief and pain a grief like this brings.  If you have suffered a loss like this, my thoughts are with you.  May you find peace this Christmas.

 

artwork@Mr_vector-03

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

 

 

 

 

Grieving for your Mum at Christmas

selective focus photo of woman carrying baby
Photo by VisionPic .net on Pexels.com

 

Christmas is a very emotional time.  It is full of hope, anticipation, love and joy!  We can forget the cold weather as dark nights are lit up with Christmas trees, fairy lights and decorations.  Not many people can walk past a house that’s lit up so brightly and still feel gloomy.  In fact, if you’re feeling a little miserable, I thoroughly recommend spending some time looking at festively decorated houses, shops and high streets.

For some of us though, Christmas brings with it a sadness that cannot be blown away by the beautiful sight of decorated tress nor the lights shining brightly all around us.  If you are grieving then this time of year only accentuates the sadness but highlights the loss of those that are missing.  If this is you, don’t feel that you have to force the happiness and pretend that everything’s OK.  In fact, when we do this, we inadvertently make things worse not only for ourselves but those around us.  The Anti-Diet Lifestyle promotes the complete expression of our thoughts and feelings because it is only then can we release the pain and honour who we really are and what is close to us.  Know also that grief has no timeline, agenda or format and that we all need to understand this if we are to help others and ourselves.  Also, despite what others tell you, you do NOT have to get over it.  It is also OK if you feel that the time is right for you to ‘move through’ the process and that you do not have to feel guilty for letting yourself enjoy life and all that Christmas has to offer.  This does not make you selfish or unfeeling any more than being sad makes you a killjoy or ‘black cloud’.  Let yourself feel and be what your heart is telling you.  If you are not sure, stop for a moment and really let your inner self guide you to your true feelings.

A mum is one of the most important people in most people’s lives and the huge gap that’s left behind when they’re no longer there can be unbearable.  I wrote this poem to recognise the grief and pain a grief like this brings.  If you have suffered a loss like this, my thoughts are with you.  May you find peace this Christmas.

 

artwork@Mr_vector-02

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

 

How to look and feel amazing this Christmas!

It’s the festive season.  There’s excitement in the air and you are being bombarded with invitations to social events.  You are also busy making plans for Christmas day itself and of course the days of celebrations afterwards leading up to New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day!  It all sounds wonderful if it were not for the fact that you need the perfect outfit to wear for every occasion, one that not only makes you look amazing but at the same time is comfortable and within your budget.  Then there’s the worry that you’ll need to wear something different if you are attending more than one event with the same people because you can’t possibly wear the same outfit!!

Panic not for help is at hand!  Here are some things you can do to make the whole thing easier and therefore more enjoyable for you:

 

  1. Make a list of all the events you will be attending. The obvious ones are the work’s Xmas party or parties (some of my friends who work for large corporations have departmental, local and national events to go to!)  The not so obvious ones, which also need to be considered if feeling confident is important to you, include the outfit you will be wearing on the day itself, on Boxing day and New Year’s Day.  Before I receive hate mail that looking good should not be that important, please read the title of the blog is ‘How to feel amazing at Christmas’ NOT ‘how to look good at Christmas’.  Whether we like it or not, most of us feel better and our self-esteem is likely to be higher when we feel we have made an effort with our appearance.

 

  1. Think about and list the people that will be attending each of these events. At first you may not think that it’s important to do this BUT, consider whether you really want to wear the same outfit to occasions where you will meet the same people.  Obviously, if this is not important to you, then skip this part.  Just from a personal perspective, I like to wear a different outfit at such times.

 

  1. List whether each occasion will be ‘formal’ or ‘informal’. This is important because the outfit you choose has to fit into this category because there’s nothing like being under-dressed or overdressed in a situation to ruin it for us because it can leave us feeling self-conscious the whole time.  Also, whether it’s true or not, it can make us feel like other people may be talking about us behind our backs!

 

  1. Think about whether the event or gathering is going to be held indoors or outdoors. It will be winter so it’s quite likely that you will be indoors most of the time but there are many activities such as ice skating, Christmas markets and fares that require you to be outside!

 

  1. Consider how you plan to get there, how you plan to get back or if you will be staying overnight. These things are very important because you do not want to be freezing all the time and neither do you wish to be too warm.   It will also determine the styles of shoes to wear or NOT wear!!

So, to summarise, think about and list down:

  1. The events you will be attending
  2. Who will be attending the events
  3. Whether they are ‘formal’ or ‘informal’
  4. If you will be spending time indoors/outdoors or both
  5. Whether you will be travelling there and back and how

These five factors will determine the type of clothing you will need to wear but not WHAT you should wear to look and feel your very best during the festive season!  Once you have completed this list in full, you are ready to plan for each outfit that you will need!

Tip 1      Start early!  If you only follow one tip, follow this one!!  The earlier you start, the more time you will have.  This will not only stop you from panicking but also allow you to search for suitable clothes from a wider market as last minute delivery is not available everywhere.  Some online retailers offer great outfits and accessories but, if they are based overseas, the delivery times can be longer and need to be factored in.    You will also have more time to get your outfit tailored and be able to order cheaper options from further afield.

Tip 2      Look at what you already own, I mean, seriously look at what you already have in your wardrobe, in a drawer, packed away in the attic etc!  Try everything on and, if you still feel great in it, wear it with the warm glow that comes from saving money and looking great!

Tip 3      Experiment – Go to the shops and try on all types of styles even if you think they do not suit you and/or you don’t like the look of them.  From experience, I know that many outfits look completely different when you actually try them on.  Some look a lot better when you least expect them to and others look a lot worse!!  If you are self-conscious, make sure you go shopping on your own and then be brave by trying on lots and lots of different things.  Do not let the fact that something doesn’t look good put you off, simply dismiss it by saying ‘NEXT!!’  (out loud if at all possible, for maximum benefits!).  If you run out of things to try in one shop and haven’t found anything, do not be deterred, just take yourself to another shop.  Do not for one second think that people who have great outfits just went to the first shop and slinked into them, OH NO!!  Believe me, most people have to traipse around the shops more than once to find THE outfit!

Tip 4      Try on different sizes – If you love an outfit, take varying sizes of it to the changing room with you.  Don’t let the label put you off, if a larger size looks better, go for it!  Tell yourself ‘I look and feel amazing in this’ and smile at your reflection at the same time.  If the size really bothers you, cut off the label when you get home.  It took me a long time to realise that it was a hundred times better to wear something that fit me comfortably than to squeeze myself into something that did not.

Tip 5      Try different colours – It’s not just styles that you should experiment with, you should also try different colours and textures that you normally shy away from.  Banish thoughts such as ‘that colour makes me look washed out’, ‘that colour makes me look fat’ etc, etc.  You really will be amazed by how many new outfits you will find that make you look and feel a million dollars!

Tip 6      Find online versions of outfits and styles you have tried on and look great on you.  Many outfits are much cheaper online and once you know that a particular style suits you, you can look for bargains on the internet in confidence knowing that the style will look good.  Also, order the same outfit in more than one size (providing the retailer offers free returns).  This way you can try on everything in the comfort of your own home.

Tip 7      Do not rush – Go shopping when you have enough time to try things on.  Be mentally prepared for it to be busy and take longer too.  At Christmas, the whole world seems to want to shop but embracing this and accepting it will make it much more enjoyable for you!

Tip 8      Take someone you trust or don’t take anyone at all – This is very important!  If you have a friend or family member that you know will tell you the truth without being unkind and you are confident they want the best for you – TAKE THEM WITH YOU!  On the other hand, no matter how much you do not want to go alone, please do not take someone you know has a habit of being spiteful or hateful or envious or in any way negative towards you.  I used to do this a lot and I always regretted it.  I remember a particular, very slim ‘friend’ I had who would love putting me down in subtle ways.  She would try on the outfits I liked, knowing full well she would look better because she was slim and I was not.  I very rarely bought anything and when I did, it was not what I wanted, it was a dowdy and dark tent like item that I hoped would just make me invisible.  I know now that I can buy things in larger sizes and still look good but this ‘friend’ did not allow me the freedom to experiment and relax enough to find things that I could have looked great in.

Tip 9      Do NOT buy something in a smaller size or that ‘just’ fits with the intention of losing the weight beforehand.  This really does not work and will put you under a lot of pressure.  In fact, when we do this, we are more likely to put on weight rather than lose it.  Human nature is such that the minute we decide we can’t have something, we really, REALLY begin to want it.  Overnight, you will start obsessing about what you should and should not eat and our natural tendency is also to keep weighing ourselves.  This type of obsession is not healthy, it stops us living in the moment and keeps us stuck in a future, unknown outcome for our happiness.  Please, do NOT do this.  Find something that feels and looks good on you right now, even if you are hoping to lose weight.  This way, you will be able to relax, knowing that you do not have to do a single thing to be able to wear the outfit/outfits you have chosen.  When something fits, we look and feel better without much effort because stress changes our body and our face and our total ‘look’ without us even realising it!!

Tip 10    If you currently lack confidence in your figure, go for something floaty or layered or with a mesh overlay.  Yes, the thought of a tight-fitting dress sounds amazing but do you really want to be breathing in all evening?  I’m talking from experience here as I made this mistake often when I was dieting.  I would then feel uncomfortable and was afraid to eat in case I couldn’t hold my stomach in afterwards!

I hope these tips help you and wish you the most amazing festive season ever!!

 

Written by Sherry Taylor, author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christmas recipe for Festive Cookies!!

 

Festive Cookies

Cooking is a great pastime and it’s good for your soul!  It stirs your creative juices and is very therapeutic.  Many people cook when they are stressed to help them to relax.  In fact, cooking can be a kind of meditation if you really immerse yourself totally into the creative process that it is!  Give it a go, instead of seeing it as a chore, see it as a licence to increase and attract more creativity into your life.

Here’s a recipe to get you into the festive season, novelty shaped festive cookies!!  Have a go and enjoy!!

 You will need:

470g plain flour

300g caster sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

225g butter or cooking margarine

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Makes approximately 48 cookies

Method

Preparation time approx. 20 minutes

Cooking time approx. 8 minutes

Ready to eat in 28 minutes!

  1. Preheat oven to 200 C / Gas 6 and lightly grease two baking trays or line with parchment.
  2. Sift flour, baking powder and salt together; put aside for later.
  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter or margarine and sugar until it’s a light and fluffy texture. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the vanilla extract. Slowly blend in the sifted flour until it’s evenly mixed. Cover dough, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  4. On a floured surface, roll out portions of dough to 5mm thickness. Cut out a tree, star or heart shape using a knife or use a variety of Christmas cookie cutters.
  5. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes in the preheated oven, or until edges are barely brown. Transfer from baking tray to wire cooling racks. Decorate with icing when completely cool.

Sherry Taylor, author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

Christmas recipe for you!

 

Festive Mince Pies

Cooking is a great pastime and it’s good for your soul!  It stirs your creative juices and is very therapeutic.  Many people cook when they are stressed to help them to relax.  In fact, cooking can be a kind of meditation if you really immerse yourself totally into the creative process that it is!  Give it a go, instead of seeing it as a chore, see it as a licence to increase and attract more creativity into your life.

Here’s a recipe to get you into the festive season, the good old favourite mince pie!!  Have a go and enjoy!!

 

You will need:

350g (12 oz) of mincemeat

1 large egg, beaten

2 tablespoons caster sugar

225g (8 oz) plain flour

125g (4½ oz) butter, diced

milk, to glaze

Method

Preparation time approx. 1 hour

Cooking time approx. 20 minutes

Ready to eat in 1 hour and 20 minutes!

  1. Lightly butter a 12-case patty tin. Tip the mincemeat into a bowl and stir so that the liquid is mixed in evenly.
  2. Place the flour, sugar and butter in a food processor and process briefly until resembling breadcrumbs, then slowly add the egg through the feeder tube (or rub the butter into the dry ingredients by hand and stir in the egg).
  3. knead the mixture together with your hands, wrap in cling film and chill for an hour. Thinly roll out the pastry onto a floured surface. Cut out 12 circles with a fluted pastry cutter, large enough to fill the cases in the patty tin. Press gently into each case, then fill evenly with the mincemeat.
  4. Cut out another 12 slightly smaller circles and use to cover the mincemeat. Press the edges together with the end of a fork to seal. Make a small slit in the top of each, then brush lightly with milk. Chill for about 30 minutes.
  5. While chilling, preheat the oven to 200 C / Gas Mark 6. Bake the pies for 20 minutes until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack and serve warm. Enjoy!

 

Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

How to survive Halloween and actually enjoy it!!

It’s nearly Halloween, you’ve been invited to a party by a close friend who has asked that everyone dress up in their most spooky costume ever!  Instead of being excited, you’re immediately in panic mode!  What will you wear, how will you keep on your diet and should you bother going at all?  You remember last year when you turned down an invitation and really regretted it when you heard about all the fun your friends had while you stayed in and watched scary movies on TV all night stuffing your face with Halloween delights.  Oh yes, it had been great in the beginning as you’d scoffed bat shaped chocolates, jelly spiders and wiggly worms but after a while all you’d felt was sad, fat and ugly.  To make things worse, you’d had to unzip your jeans as you couldn’t contain your stomach in the jeans that were threatening to cut you in half!!

 

You definitely don’t want to repeat last year but you’re worried how you’ll survive this year let alone hope to actually enjoy it.  I was exactly the same, I loved all the hype about Halloween, all the discussions about what my friends were going to wear and what the plan was for the night itself.  On the flip side, I was inwardly dreading having to find an outfit I felt good in and had to build up the courage to turn up and try and avoid all the tempting food that was always available.

 

If you can relate to any of this, help is at hand!!  Here are some things you can do to have a fantastic Halloween:

 

  1. Outfit

Inside all of us, there’s the vamp.  We want to look scary yet sexy at the same time!  We need to look no further than the shelves of every shop that sells Halloween costumes to find outfits we’d love to be able to carry off.  The vampires, Cat woman, Bat woman or any slender long black dresses to kill for!  Instead, you end of squeezing into something that just makes you feel like a pumpkin.

 

Well, worry no more.  Here are a few tips to help you look and feel good on the night:

 

(a) Don’t leave it to the last minute! Start right now.  There are so many places you can look for a costume online but you have to make sure it will arrive in time.

 

(b) Don’t opt for a tight-fitting costume. No matter how good it looks on the model in the store, it will make you feel self-conscious and uncomfortable all night!

 

(c) Choose a soft material that is flexible. Look for outfits that have layers, lace around the waist, mesh overlays or shawls are great and you won’t feel the urge to breathe in all night letting you relax more.

 

(d) Dark colours are great but so is a bright red!

 

(e) Paint those nails! – There’s nothing like beautiful nails to make you feel a million dollars! Have them done professionally or save money and have a go yourself.  There are so many decorative nail stickers you can use to add the spooky touch.

 

(f) Make up to the nines! – Great make-up can add so much to our confidence. Allow enough time to put on your make up so that you don’t have to rush.  I’m not saying you have to wear make up if you don’t want to, I’m just suggesting that a little effort is bound to give your confidence a boost.

 

(g) Shoes – Comfortable and sexy is totally doable! – There’s nothing worse than wearing beautiful shoes that cripple you all evening. The internet is a godsend in these situations.  A simple search will bring up multiple options for you to look good AND be comfortable.  Also, many of us (me included) tend to have a huge shoe collection as it is.  Make it your mission to ‘hunt’ in your wardrobe and try on different styles – you just might find the perfect match!

 

  1. Food

This is a biggie.  There’s no getting away from the fact that you will be faced with temptations galore.  As the weather gets colder, comfort food takes on a new meaning altogether!  Hot sausage rolls, jackets with cheese, mini party food items of all kinds and of course the array of sweet delights.  Just the mention of these has my mouth watering.  So, how do we tackle these situations?  Here are a few tips to help you:

 

(a) Eat before you go! This is a must, if you are hungry (or worse, starving) you will eat more.  You can’t not.  As soon as the delicious smells waft over, your stomach will instantly crave a mountain of food!  Therefore, before you leave, make sure you eat a filling meal.

 

(b) Eat slowly – Yes, easier said than done, but, with a little practice, it will become second nature. There are two reasons for this:

 

  • (i) Eating slowing lets you actually taste the food. If you don’t believe this, try it the next time you eat.  When we eat things we feel we shouldn’t, we tend to ‘hoover’ the food so fast that, in our guilty mind, we forget to actually enjoy it.  Sure, the first few bites are great but after that, we shovel it in as if it was running out.  So, plan to eat slow, purposeful mouthfuls.  Remember to chew and totally enjoy the flavours.

 

  • (ii) Eating slowly lets your stomach have a chance to recognise when it is full and to send a signal of satisfaction to your brain. This way, you only eat until you are satisfied and not until you are stuffed!

 

  • (iii) Don’t deny yourself as this will make the craving monster grow.  Also, it will make you eat more than you otherwise would because after a while we tend to think ‘what the heck, I’ve broken my diet so I might as well truly stuff my face to make it worthwhile’.  So, allow yourself to eat what you love and to do so without a shred of guilt.  In fact, as you eat, remember to acknowledge to yourself how much you are enjoying eating whatever it is that you desire.

I hope you find these tips useful and hope you have the spookiest and happiest Halloween!!

 

Happy Anti-Diet Halloween to everyone!!

 

Written by Sherry Taylor, author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

The shocking truths about forgiveness and weight-loss!

 

Forgiveness

What exactly is forgiveness and why does it help us and more specifically, why will it help us to not only improve our lives but also to lose weight?  I fully accept that these are big claims and there’s no denying that if forgiveness alone could take us to our goal, we would all be happy!!  Obviously and unfortunately, this is not true but, what is true is that forgiveness helps us to release and overcome blocks in our lives that could be holding us back from:

  1. Taking the first step towards a change that’s needed in our lives
  2. Ending a toxic relationship
  3. Speaking up
  4. Defending ourselves
  5. Daring to try something new

Why does forgiveness hold us back?

There are many reasons why forgiveness holds us back such as:

  1. You can be so wrapped up in hating someone that you cannot see the opportunities in front of you
  2. Your constant resentment of someone or something that happened keeps you caught in the vicious cycle of revenge and rejection and fear
  3. A mind that is focussed on hating someone has tunnel vision and can miss out on new chances to improve their life or reach their goal.

The common denominator of all of the above is energy.  Forgiveness steals energy, it drains your resources, it taints your view of life, it limits your possibilities and it affects the choices you make in life.

What is forgiveness?

You can look at forgiveness from many angles but this article will concentrate on the perspective of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.  In this context, let me first explain what forgiveness is not:

  1. It is not believing that what you need to forgive is OK
  2. It is not continuing to accept bad behaviour from someone or something in your life
  3. It is not accepting your fate in life and submitting yourself to an unhappy future

Forgiveness is:

  1. Letting go of negative feelings towards a person/s or event that happened to you
  2. Removing yourself from a situation that no longer serves you. The key here is that you remove yourself voluntarily and WITHOUT resentment
  3. Removing yourself from a person that does not support you or worse, brings you down.
  4. When you decide to stop re-living the past
  5. When you allow yourself to start looking forward to the future
  6. When you no longer let failure, rejection, resentment and anger define who you are
  7. Allowing yourself to release your past leaving all feelings of guilt and inadequacy firmly behind you

Remember that forgiveness can apply to many things, events and people.  The person you need to forgive could even be YOU.

‘The person you need to forgive could even be YOU’

This is sadly a very common thing.  We make a mistake or we judge ourselves too harshly for an outcome we didn’t want or a mistake we have made.  When we don’t forgive ourselves, we can become locked in negative feelings of low self-esteem, self-resentment and self-loathing that will no doubt hold you back from achieving your goals.

Forgiveness isn’t necessarily the ‘big’ things in life either such as a bad relationship, a boss at work that makes your life miserable or a wrong decision you made in trusting someone. Forgiveness, very often is in the little things that, if left unforgiven, can add up to bigger problems in your life.  Examples include:

Anger brought on by someone jumping a queue you’re in

Resentment against someone who is promoted above you

Frustration when your team didn’t win

Anger because your partner had to work late again

If then, we practice forgiving the ‘little’ things, we will find that our overall outlook on life will improve and you won’t even be able to pinpoint why!

Here are examples of the Little things you can forgive that will gradually add up and improve the quality of your life:

Forgiving the driver that cut in front of you making you break hard

Not letting the person at work who ignored your request for help ruin your day

Letting go of resentment when someone doesn’t say ‘thank you’ when you hold the door open for them

The benefits of forgiving:

This list doesn’t come near to covering all the benefits but here are some to get you motivated to forgive more often:

  • You will have reduced feelings of resentment
  • You will have fewer mood swings
  • Angry thoughts may reduce
  • Your blood pressure is more likely to be stable
  • Your mental health will benefit
  • Feelings of anxiety could be reduced
  • You will have better relationships

How can forgiveness help me with the Anti-Diet Lifestyle?

Even though it’s impossible to fully understand why we make the choices we do that lead us to a place we don’t wish to be, there are things we can change that will no doubt help us rather than hinder in our quest to reach our goals.  Our relationship with food is a very complex one and it cannot be tackled simply by knowing we need to eat less of what is ‘unhealthy’ and more of what is ‘healthy’; Or that exercise will make us leaner, fitter and stronger.   If knowledge alone were sufficient, we would all be healthy, wealthy and wise!

As the Anti-Diet Lifestyle evolved and became the foundation of my own life, I realised that weight loss was a series of little things that we do that lead us there, just as weight gain is a result of decisions we have made big or small.  No one wakes up one morning and discovers they are not happy with their bodies overnight, instead, it’s a slow, gradual decline that one day makes us unhappy.  The littles things are, as explained previously, much more than knowledge about what we should and should not do.  They are the things that determine the actions we take on a micro level.  The way we look in the mirror and hate what we see, the donuts we eat as a ‘treat’, the dress we buy that’s too small, the negative thoughts we think about ourselves.

I have found that holding on to resentment is more likely to lead you to the ‘bad’ decisions in your life whereas forgiveness is likely to lead you to your goals.  So, if you’re trying to lose weight and failing, I urge you to include forgiveness into the daily routine of your life.  Practice it often and wait for positive outcomes to show up in your life!!

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Start the Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

How to start the anti-diet lifestyle

So, you’re sick of dieting, you’ve tried so many things; the slimming clubs, the fad diets, the calorie counting, the obsessive exercising, the low fat ‘diet’ foods but nothing seems to work.  It could even be that you’ve considered some of the above but something inside you just hasn’t wanted to try yet.  It could be that you’re just at the point of feeling fed up and thinking that you might just as well accept the fact that you’ll never be the size you’d like to be, never wear the clothes you yearn to and never have the body confidence that your friends have.  My advice to you would be STOP!!  There is another way and you can achieve your dreams.

There is so much on the internet these days that it’s impossible to know what is and what is not true and dieting is no exception.  In fact, the fitness world is one of the biggest promisers of ‘easy, quick fix’ results!  It’s no wonder then that you are likely to doubt and quickly dismiss anything that fits into this category for you.

To counteract all of the fake claims, all of the apparent easy fixes and replace them with real hope, give the anti-diet lifestyle a try.  You do not have to do anything today but start and you can start right here and right now!!

The Anti-Diet is unlike any other weight loss programme because it does not focus on it!  I found that in many cases, the overeating, poor nutritional meals and not exercising were just symptoms of the problem.  We all know that addressing the symptoms will not make the actual problem go away.  Take for example a person trying to fill a bucket with water.  The bucket has a hole in it and as the person fills it, the water seeps out of the hole.  The person thinks that if only he poured water in more quickly then the bucket would fill up.  Inevitably, after an hour of trying, he is absolutely exhausted and the bucket is still empty!!  If instead, the person, upon noticing the hole, decides to find something to seal it with first, he is obviously going to eventually have his bucket filled.  Now, it might feel like this is going to take longer and at first it does.  He has to look for something suitable to fill the hole with.  He may even try some things that don’t work but eventually, he will find something that works.  There’s no doubt that he has spent a lot of energy finding the right thing, the right tools and the right method but, in the end he succeeds.  Whereas in the first example, all you would have been left with is an empty bucked and a dejected and tired person!!  Weight loss is a bit like that and unfortunately conventional dieting is like the bucket being filled whilst it has a hole in it.  Dieting does not work for long!!

So it is with the Anti-Diet Lifestyle.  It will equip you with the tools and resources necessary to fill ‘the hole in the bucket’.  To lose weight and to lose it permanently requires a shift in our mindset, and a VOLUNTARY change of behaviour.  Notice the word ‘voluntary’ because this is key to long-term success at anything.  Through information, assignments and guidance, the Anti-Diet Lifestyle will equip you with everything you need for long-term weight loss success.

So how do you start?  There are lots of ways you can begin your Anti-Diet Lifestyle journey and here are a few to get you started:

1.Go to theantidiet.blog website. I have put together lots of information on what the Anti-Diet Lifestyle is and what you need to do to begin your unique long-term weight loss journey.  There are many blogs you can read and new ones are added on a regular basis.  You can also message me at any time if you feel stuck and I will be happy to answer your questions along the way.

2.Read the Anti-Diet Lifestyle – 4 Crazy Steps to Weight Loss Success! I wrote this book to help anyone struggling to lose weight.  It is written in simple, easy to understand language and will equip you perfectly to being Anti-Dieting.

It is available in book Ebook and paperback format from the Amazon store:

Ebook:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07L2RB8P6

Paperback:         https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/1730911366

3.Join the Anti-Diet Community – Here you will be supported and helped throughout your journey. You will have access to the 4 Crazy Steps to Weight Loss Success course and will also be the first to see videos and blogs and posts before anyone else!  You will have access to a wealth of information and I will be in regular contact with you to help and monitor your process.  Simply log on to theantidiet.blog and join!

4.All of the above!! This is a winning combination that will give you full support and guidance all the way to the end and beyond!

A snapshot of the Anti-Diet Process

If you are still in the dark, here is a step by step process for you to follow either alone or with the Anti-Diet Community:

1.Use daily affirmations and self-love exercises for at least 30 days on a daily basis. This is the run-up to the Anti-Diet and will prepare you to immerse yourself into the Anti-Diet principles of which the foundation is extreme self-love.  This will be a lifelong habit which you can reduce over time to about 2 – 3 times a week if you wish.

2.Start Crazy Step 1 – Stop Weighing yourself.

3.Start Crazy Step 2 – Stop Dieting, learn to feel full, eat without guilt, stop denial, stop counting calories, stop eating ‘diet’ food.

4.Start Crazy Step 3 – Let Go of …… Negativity, self-loathing, guilt etc.

5.Start Crazy Step 4 – Break up with Food, learn about nutrition, feed your body, break up with your bad relationship to food and build a new, nurturing one!

Along your journey, you will also be guided to equip yourself to:

  • Cope with the hard times, the bad times and the knocks life throws at all of us.
  • Deal and prepare for the good times, the celebrations, the socialising and indulgence.

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

Easy Steps to Self-Love!!

Self-Love is a core belief and foundation of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.  It is the pivot that will turn your focus from dieting to not dieting!  It will be the guide to permanent weight loss and the compass that will point you towards the path you need to take.  On top of that, it is self-love that will create the unique map that you need to follow to find what you are looking for, one that will work for you and you alone.  This is the reason that The Anti-Diet Lifestyle’s, beginning, middle and end is sewn together with the thread of self-love.  Yes, these are big claims and you may not yet believe why on earth or how on earth something you cannot see can have the ability to change and transform your life!  If you trust the process and start to apply the principles, the clouds will clear and it will begin to make sense.  Before I go on to explain the reasons why The Anti-Diet Lifestyle focuses so heavily on self-love, let me also highlight what self-love will inject into your day to day life:

  • An increase in motivation
  • An increase in happiness
  • A sense of purpose
  • A sense of fulfillment
  • A feeling of being comfortable in your own skin
  • Remove the need to rush your weight loss journey
  • Allow you to enjoy the journey and not just the destination

The list is literally endless but I hope the above alone will encourage you to at least be curious about this intangible thing called self-love!

Why self-love?

There are many answers to this question but the one that is most relevant for The Anti-Diet Lifestyle is that, through my own personal experience, I have found it to be the simplest and shortest route to weight loss success.  Notice that I did not use the word easy because, quite simply, if you have been suffering from weight and body image issues, self-love is going to be an extremely difficult path to walk on.  Please do not let this put you off because it’s a journey worth starting.

What exactly is self-love?

Self-love is when your operating system, the thing that drives everything you do, say and are is from the perspective of believing that you, exactly as you are, are enough.  It gives you full permission to love and care for yourself first.  It lets you say no, it lets you choose people and things in life that nurture you and you alone. This means that when you live a life filled with self-love, you make choices based on self-trust and self-acceptance.  When you face failure, or feel stuck you do not fire the bullets of shame or frustration towards yourself.  In a state of self-love you can rise above the crisis and truly search for anything good that you can salvage.  In fact, when you truly love yourself, your life becomes a joy and it becomes easier and you feel less impatient.  It sounds so totally unbelievable but I am living proof that it works.

A word of caution – self-love is not being selfish or unkind or inconsiderate to others, it just means that we value ourselves and are worthy of all that is good in life just as others are in theirs.

How to bring self-love into your life

From my experience, you can approach self-love from three angles:

From a spiritual stand-point

From a practical stand-point

A mixture of both

As with anything in life, a balanced approach is normally seen and proven to be the best way for maximum and sustainable results.  We are all painfully aware that whilst this may be the case, in practice, it is rarely achievable without a sustained and persisted tactic.  The Anti-Diet lifestyle is all about being achievable and with minimum effort so here’s an easy way to tackle this absolutely vital skill:

Download the 7 Day self-love challenge I have put together for this very purpose.  The tasks ask broken down into days and it costs nothing to give them a try.

If you are skeptical or a total disbeliever it does not matter as long as you are willing to give in to the exercises with complete (or as much as possible) conviction.  You do not need to be spiritual at all but you do need to commit to the process.  Think of it as learning to drive a car, you do not need to know how the engine works, you just need to know which levers, buttons and gears you need to operate and how.  If you follow your instructor’s advice, the car will move!  Likewise, if you follow the Anti-Diet Lifestyle exercises, they will work!

‘Self-love can be as simple as saying no to something or something and as complicated as forgiveness’

Sherry Taylor

I hope I have managed to spark your interest and if that’s the case, don’t forget to download the 7 Day self-love challenge and begin your own personal journey to success!

Written by Sherry Taylor, Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

6 easy ways to drink more water!

The very word water makes many of us run for cover!  We feel it is tasteless and boring.  Drinking it is a chore much like cleaning the oven.  We just don’t want to do it!  The health benefits are clear and easy to find, here are a few:

It helps to boost mental performance

It helps to boost physical performance

It can stabilise your mood

Hydration is needed for digestion

Hydration is needed for our heart and circulation

Hydration is needed for temperature control

Hydration is needed for our brain to work well

Drinking water may help with weight loss

water pouring in clear drinking glass
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Like anything, the mere knowing of the benefits is just not enough.  We have to actually put this knowledge to use and this is the hard part!!  I used to absolutely hate drinking water; I was hooked on diet fizzy drinks.  I have even been known to have a full-blown binge and wash it down with diet cola!!  As I made my Anti-Diet journey, I was more open to trying new things and decided that I would once again try to drink more water.  I was determined to not only lose weight but also to be healthy.

The first thing I did was forget about all the times I had tried in the past and failed.  I knew that this would only hold me back and served no positive purpose whatsoever.  The second was that I gave myself the permission to try various ways to find one that would work for me.  I decided that an open, experimental approach would put me in a more powerful frame of mind because if I tried a way that I didn’t like, I would not see it as a failure.  I would simply see it as a way of eliminating what didn’t work which freed me to move on to the next method.  Here are some of the things I tried which I hope might help you:

All in one go

If you’re a ‘rip of that band aid’ type of person, this is for you.  All you need to do is decide, plan ahead and go for it!  Unfortunately, if life was that easy, we would all be walking around successful, slim, healthy, wealthy and wise!!  Bring in real life and you’ll find that only a small percentage of people will fit into this bracket but if you are one of the lucky few, then this is all you need to do!

Now for some realistic and totally possible ways that you can try:

Enlist a buddy

Some people prefer to go it alone and some don’t!  If you fit into the ‘don’t’ section then this is for you.  Ideally, you need a likeminded friend or friends so that you can help each other and benefit at the same time.  If you don’t have anyone like that, not to worry, find someone who is happy to help you and in return you could support them in some other way.  Once you find someone, agree a plan that will lead you to regularly drink the amount of water you would like to drink each day.  You can then help and encourage each other as you go.  It could be in the form of texts, messages, status updates or calls.  If you work together or live together it will be even easier as you can check in on each other’s progress in person.  If one or both of you is having a bad day, you can be there to offer extra encouragement which can really make the difference between perseverance and giving up.  The great thing about this option is that it doesn’t have to cost a penny!  You can obviously buy apps and special bottles etc if that makes it more fun or just easier for you.

Buy a bottle with a timeline

This is a great way to help you stay focussed and drink the amount of water that you would like to in a day.  There are many similar types of bottles that can buy and the starting price is really low.  They make it very easy for you to be able to measure how much you have had to drink and they split the bottle into times of the day so all you need to do is drink the amount of water by what is says on the bottle by the specified time.  If you need a little extra help, you could put an alarm on your phone to remind you as well.

Put on an alarm

Many times, the reason for not drinking enough water is because our lives are so busy, we can literally forget to drink!  With the best intentions then, you are likely to find that at the end of the day, that glass of water you put beside you is still full or that you forgot to even get a glass out in the first place.  A brilliant and very simple remedy for this is to set an alarm.  If you are planning to have four glasses of water a day, split your day realistically into four and as soon as the alarm sounds, you discipline yourself to the drink water.  Prepare for times when you are may not have access to water and counteract it by carrying a lightweight water bottle with you for this purpose.  That way, even if you have to change your schedule at the last minute, you will not have an excuse for not drinking the amount of water you had planned to.

Use an app  

This is a great way to not only remind yourself to drink water but also to log and measure just how much you have had each day.  There are numerous apps available on android and iPhone that you can download to track, remind and log the amount of water that you have during the course of a day/days.  This is an easy way to keep in control and measure your progress.  The slight downside to this could be the fact that you will need to have your phone with you at all times and if you are in a situation where you should not be using your mobile, it can be difficult, annoying or embarrassing or all three!  Bear this in mind when you set alarms and reminders in general.  Perhaps plan ahead each day and put your phone on silent.  Obviously, don’t forget to put the volume up again afterwards as you may miss out on vital alarms and messing up your schedule totally!!

Hidden – tea, coffee

If you really, truly hate water, all is not lost!  There are other ways of adding water to your day.  For example, tea and coffee both count!!  Keep in mind that these also contain caffeine so what how much you actually drink.  Other surprising things that count towards water is fruit!  Watermelon is a great one as it consists of about 90% water!!

In reality most liquids and many foods contain water but the problem with them could be that they are likely to contain other things such as artificial ingredients, caffeine, sugars which makes them an unhealthier choice.  Balance is key though so do allow yourself to enjoy these in moderation.

Don’t forget

Before you start, have a plan as you are much more likely to stick to a new routine with one.  Things to consider are:

How much do you need to drink each day – A quick google search will help with this.  A general guideline is 1.2 litres per day.

If you absolutely hate water try adding a slice of lemon or lime to it or alternatively, flavour it with fruit.  You can purchase water bottles with a built in fruit infuser which makes doing this really easy!!

What method is best for me? – Here’s where you can experiment.  Try any of the above individually or a combination of some or all of them!

Lastly, tell yourself that It is OK to slip up but it’s not OK to give up.  Just keep going and eventually a new habit will be created!!

HAPPY DRINKING!!

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Body Positivity and The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

Body positivity is such a buzz word right now, it’s everywhere from mainstream media to the words we speak to each other.  The text book definition of body positivity is wonderfully put here by Wikipedia:

‘Body positivity is a social movement rooted in the belief that all human beings should have a positive body image, while challenging the ways in which society presents and views the physical body.’

This is an excerpt and you can read it all here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Body_positivity

For a long time, I, like many people that were in my circle formed my own definition of it and I can tell you it has changed dramatically.  When the saying first entered my world, I just thought ‘oh here we go, it’s just another movement about people pushing the belief that it’s perfectly OK to be overweight and that we should celebrate that.  Before I go on, please forgive me as I was very ignorant and I’m not ashamed to admit it. I thought it was just another fly by night thing and that it would all go away when people realised the serious health issues behind obesity and the dangers of promoting it as OK.  BUT and it is a huge BUT, I was WRONG!!  Body positivity is indeed about feeling OK just as we are, not feeling ashamed because of the size of our bodies and it is much, much more.  It challenges society’s, ingrained and long-standing views about what is and what is not acceptable.  This extends way beyond weight, it challenges beliefs of what is and is not beautiful, it wants to obliterate stereotypes of ‘ugly’ and ‘beautiful’, it allows people space and celebration of being unashamedly and proudly exactly who they are.  I am a converted, fan.  I am a super fan of body positivity and what is stands for.

Unfortunately, in this world, it is still seen as taboo to promote body positivity for there are backlashes from just about every corporate business that’s foundations are built on instilling and maintaining self-insecurity.  The fashion and beauty industry head this ‘government’ and the food and diet industry feed off what’s left over.  You see, if we all felt comfortable in our own skins and validated without the need to be slimmer or more ‘beautiful’ then these companies would be out of business overnight!

What I’m not saying is that there is anything fundamentally wrong with putting on make-up or a new dress or wanting to be fitter and leaner.  What I am saying is that if you don’t want to then that’s perfectly OK too.  It does not automatically make you unattractive, greedy, lazy or any other negative description we seem to automatically attach to who we perceive is not ‘ideal’.  It is also widely accepted that what is beautiful and perfect are the images we constantly see in the media.  This is not true because beauty really is subjective. By this I mean that what I might find to be beautiful and perfect may be the opposite for someone else.  This ‘world view’ is broken and is fake!  You only have to look back in history and study fashion and the arts to see that images portrayed as ‘beautiful’ have changed over time.  Also consider, that millions and millions of people are not attracted to the same ‘type’.  It is the media that bands these images in full knowledge that because of our uniqueness as human beings, the likelihood of us mere mortals achieving the ‘look’ is next to impossible.  But because of the seductiveness of these images and the high regard they are given, we will spend our time and money pursuing that which is unattainable and more importantly, completely unnecessary!  I liken people to flowers; if you stop and consider for a moment the diversity of them, it will be easier for you to make this connection.  How can we then say that a red rose is more beautiful than a yellow one or that a tulip is more worthy than a poppy.  There are more than a million types of flowers on this planet and yet none of them are ugly.

Then there’s the medical field where people that do not fit into society’s definition of the norm are automatically considered to be a burden on the ever-decreasing funds of the medical services.  We are told that if you are obese, it’s your fault.  That you must be greedy or gluttonous or lazy or any other negative description that you can think of.  Medical experts hand out information about what we should or should not eat but do not address what we may or may not be feeling.  That perhaps we may be overweight because we do not have enough information or that we are battling an emotional issue.  When you look at the patients in a hospital, you will find people from all walks of life and of all shapes and sizes.  I am not denying the fact that being severely obese impacts our health but what I am suggesting is that we need to stop making negative judgements on people based purely upon their appearance.

The worrying and growing trend is now aimed at men too.  They are in the midst of an identity crisis.  Perfect abs, skin treatments and medical procedures are now common amongst men.  They too are becoming conscious of and being judged on their outward appearance.

We ridicule people for how they look and not for what they do!  If this is not wrong then I would beg the question, what is it?!  So, the next time you see someone and notice that they are fat or thin or ugly or whatever, stop yourself the minute you become aware of these thoughts.  Then make a conscious effort to see something nice about their appearance, or who they are or what they are doing.  Gradually, your mindset will alter and if we all play our part in this, great change will come.  Let’s all start seeing flowers, even when we look in the mirror!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

7 Habits of Highly Successful Weight Loss

Summer is well and truly here, the weather is warming up, the barbecues have been dusted down waiting expectantly in the garden and the shops are full of tiny, skimpy clothing that all your friends are wearing.  In the winter, it’s so much easier to hide in larger, long sleeved clothes that cover our entire body but as soon as the weather warms up, these are unbearable and totally useless.  The days of hiding in them is almost impossible not least because everyone is parading in colourful, summery clothes!!  I know the feeling because when I was overweight, I used to long to wear shorts, vest tops and bikinis like everyone else but instead I had to settle with long, shapeless maxi dresses or leggings and a floaty top.  Neither made me feel good because everyone knows that no matter how hard you try you can only breathe in for so long and there’s no hiding a larger behind or stomach that’s for sure.  At that time, cardigans were a big favourite of mine and I would refuse to take them off no matter how hot the weather was!

Don’t panic, there are things you can do right now to begin to feel better immediately.  Over the years, I have adopted so many habits that have helped me to lose weight and keep it off and here are 7 to get you started:

 

  1. Nutrition NOT calories

When you make decisions about what to eat, try to opt for foods that are known for their health benefits.  This is such an easy way to make quick choices with the added assurance that they will help not hinder weight loss.  It does not mean that you can’t enjoy foods that you love more like chips, burgers, pizza etc.  By all means, have them but when you do, aim to INclude good foods such as extra vegetables to top your pizza, salad in your burger and put spices that are good for you on your chips.  This will instantly mean that what you are eating contains ‘good’ as well as ‘bad’.

 

  1. Walk whenever possible

This is a no brainer but it is often overlooked.  How many times when you are taking a short trip in the car, could you have walked instead?  If you decide that from now on, you will opt to walk whenever it is possible, it will make a huge difference to your weight loss goals in a positive direction.  The short walks will add up and you will see your step count grow!

 

  1. Positive NOT negative

Always try to focus on the positive choices you can make rather than the negative ones.  This focus can apply in every area of your life for example:

  • Watch more life affirming films than those that are not
  • Read inspirational quotes instead of the news
  • Listen to upbeat songs instead of depressing ones

You will find that you will start to feel happier about life and about yourself.  In a state of contentment, you will make better choices.

  1. Do not use denial

When you have the urge to eat something that is seen as bad such as fish and chips, the worst thing you can do is not have them!  Denying ourselves leads to the ‘hunger monster’ growing to such proportions that we end up having not only the fish and chips but also cakes and chocolates and crisps.  If instead, we give in to this craving and decide to have the longed-for fish and chips, we will be much less likely to let this lead to a full blown binge.

 

  1. Do not starve

This is another very big NO!  A positive outcome will never come from starving yourself.  In fact, the opposite is almost always guaranteed.  You are much more likely to go on a bingeing spree when you are starving because the hunger monster will refuse to go away.  Instead of making us thinner, starving leads to eating much more than we would ordinarily and this will inevitably lead to weight gain.  When you choose to feed your hunger, you will notice that bit by bit, it disappears completely!  One takeaway is not the problem; one takeaway, a large bar of chocolate, a sponge cake and two packets of crisps will be.

 

  1. Wear clothes that fit

This may sound like a weird habit but it really does work.  When you wear clothes that are tight and too small for you, every spoonful you eat seems to make you pour out of your outfit.  You feel self-conscious all of the time and think (falsely) that you only have to eat a small amount and you’ll gain weight.  To add to that, you feel uncomfortable all day and this just fuels a negative self-belief.

 

  1. Learn to say no

This is about saying no to all the things that drain our energy and not about saying no to food.  When you are constantly trying to please others, you have little time for yourself.  In this state, you have less time and energy to devote to your well-being meaning that you may skip meals, opt for takeaways, miss a gym or pamper session just so you can honour your commitments to others.

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

In Celebration of Father’s Day

 

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle supports and encourages well-being of self.  Acknowledging and thanking those who care and guide us in life is a huge contributor to that process.  Father’s Day is no exception and this poem has been written to help you do just that.

A father is one of the most important person in someone’s life and saying ‘thank you’ is life affirming for everyone.   This poem is written for all new fathers of baby boys.  Share it with your partner to let them know how special they are and to thank them for all that they are and all that they do!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

In Celebration of Father’s Day

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle supports and encourages well-being of self.  Acknowledging and thanking those who care and guide us in life is a huge contributor to that process.  Father’s Day is no exception and this poem has been written to help you do just that.

A father is one of the most important person in someone’s life and saying ‘thank you’ is life affirming for everyone.   This poem is written for all new fathers of baby girls.  Share it with your partner to let them know how special they are and to thank them for all that they are and all that they do!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Celebration of Father’s Day

 

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle supports and encourages well-being of self.  Acknowledging and thanking those who care and guide us in life is a huge contributor to that process.  Father’s Day is no exception and this poem has been written to help you do just that.

A father is one of the most important person in someone’s life and saying ‘thank you’ is life affirming for everyone.   This poem is written for all fathers that are there for us in both happy and sad times.  Share it with your father to let them know how special they are to you!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

In celebration of Father’s Day

 

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle supports and encourages well-being of self.  Acknowledging and thanking those who care and guide us in life is a huge contributor to that process.  Father’s Day is no exception and this poem has been written to help you do just that.

A father is one of the most important person in someone’s life and if you have lost yours, then Father’s Day is a particularly painful time.  This poem is written in remembrance of all fathers who are no longer with us.  I hope it comforts you.

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6 Things your diet doesn’t tell you

So, you’ve started a diet.  It may be your first one, it may be the next one after a series of failed ones, but none of that matters because you’ve made the decision to try (or try again as the case may be).  You’re fired up, this is it, you tell yourself.  This is the beginning of the rest of my life!  That’s exactly how I used to feel when:

  1. It was Monday morning and I had yet again decided to re-start my diet
  2. I’d read about a new ‘fad’ diet and decided to give it a go
  3. On the 1st of January every year
  4. I had purchased the latest detox kit from the pharmacist
  5. I had purchased a beautiful item of clothing which was in my ideal size (that I wasn’t’ obviously!)

I painfully remember the total optimism I used to feel in the beginning, well the first day at least because, unfortunately, I was totally hopeless at dieting, I mean TOTALLY.  A typical day for me would be:

The night before my diet (or the week before) I would gorge on food.  I would not only eat until I was full but I would order takeaways, munch through family sized packets of crisps, devour bars of my favorite chocolate and of course wash it all down with some fizzy diet drink!  My attitude would be as if I was about to have the final supper and I would tell myself that I might as well make the most of it.  I also kidded myself that the bingeing wouldn’t hurt me because tomorrow I would be turning into the svelte and sexy person that I was sure would emerge in the next couple of weeks.

On the morning of the first day of my last diet (lol), I would wake up with so much enthusiasm and excitement because I could almost see myself sashaying down the stairs of the train station on my way to work.  All eyes would be on me as I entered the reception area of my office and I would be immersed in compliments the entire day.  This elation lasted as I ate my hamster or rabbit breakfast (cereal = hamster, fruit = rabbit) whichever I chose on the day!!  I would still wear my large, dark and stretchy outfits but this time instead of wearing them like a cloak, I would wear them as armour.  I felt defiant, I felt energized and I felt impatient for the petite body that I dreamt of.  This excitement usually started to wane very quickly.  I know some of you reading this might find it unbelievable but I really did not take to dieting at all.  I thought I was prepared for what lay ahead, I always brought with me some fruit to bide me till lunchtime.  I normally ate it all within a couple of hours and by around 11am, I was famished!  My hunger would then convince me that it was OK to eat the non-appetizing salad sandwich I had prepared myself for lunch. Needless to say, this did nothing to tame my hunger and as soon as I got home, I would binge eat until I was depressed again.  I would then console myself that tomorrow was another day and that I would be the victor this time. . . And repeat.

As I found myself on the road to anti-dieting, and I had time to think about and evaluate the dieting process, I learned that diets only tell you the ‘good’ stuff i.e. that if you do what they say, you will be the size zero of your dreams, walking on the beach in your tiny bikini.  What they don’t tell you is this:

  1. You may actually gain weight dieting

 

Yes, this happens and it happens a lot!  It’s certainly very true for me.  Looking back to when I first began dieting in my early teens, I realise that I wasn’t really ‘fat’ in the first place.  But, as my dieting commenced and progressed over the years, I can see that gradually at first and then at a fairly steady pace, I began to gain weight.  By the time I gave up dieting, I was much heavier than when I had started!  Take a moment to think back, does this apply to you?

 

  1. Most diets fail

 

I have been on a multitude of diets, both fad diets and your regular sort.  I admit it, I did lose a little weight but I always and I mean ALWAYS, gained all of it back again.  This happened as soon as I could no longer sustain the denial or when I returned to normal eating after another ‘fad’ diet.  I know that some diets are now concentrating on eating healthily and don’t concentrate on counting calories; This is great; however, they are still unsustainable because you are eating in a way that you would not normally and you still see the ‘junk’ food as ‘treats’ and ‘rewards’.  This can sometimes work in the short term but not in the long term.  The reason for this is that it doesn’t change our mindset, it doesn’t give us the tools to actually change our lifestyle forever which is what is really required if we are to sustain long-term health and weight loss.

 

  1. The diet will end up controlling you

 

I found that my entire life revolved around dieting and food.  It took me to the extreme and ended up being the reason for my happiness and unhappiness.  As long as I managed to stay ‘on my diet’ or ‘on plan’, I was happy and imagined how I would feel when I would slip into that little black dress.  When I broke my diet or ‘went off plan’ then the opposite was true, I was unhappy and dejected.  My emotions and the state of my self-esteem was ruled by the state of my diet and this was a terrible place to be in.

 

  1. Diets are not sustainable

 

If you manage to stick to the plan, if you follow all the rules and keep going to the gym, you will be slim.  Period.  This is a fact.  There is a massive flaw in this though because it simply isn’t sustainable.  When you stop the diet, you will resume normal behaviour and regain the weight you lost (in fact you may be heavier than before – see point 1).   I mean, if you have had a lifetime of eating related issues, it is almost impossible to change these behaviours by choosing to follow a plan and still expect to be slim after you resume ‘normal’ life.  How many stories have you read where someone actually manages to lose weight and then slip back into their old ways?  The hard truth is that unless you change your lifestyle, you will always be in a state of battling the dieting demons.

 

  1. Diets are a trap

 

Where do I even begin with this one!!  Because of their promise of the perfect body and lifestyle, diets lure you into a trap.  Like the mouse attracted to the delicious lump of cheese, we are taken in by the images of beautiful, happy looking people promising us the same results that they have achieved.  What they brush over is the fact that, in order to have what we want (a perfect body), we will have to experience denial, restriction and discipline, which is all but impossible!!  The hype is so addictive because in a world where looks are everything, we choose to believe that the next diet will work and when that doesn’t work, the next one will!!  Before you know it, you will be trapped in the vicious circle of dieting and the only way out appears to be yet another diet.

 

  1. Diets mess with your metabolism

 

This is something I just could not get my head around and in the days that I was caught in the dieting trap, there was no hope for me.  All I wanted was the perfect body and I was willing to chase my tail for it!!  I was in a state of emotional and mental denial and refused to believe that anything other than dieting would fix me and was certainly not willing to even consider the fact that maybe it was the ‘dieting’ itself that was holding me back from achieving my goal.  Because of this, I wasted years so caught up in dieting and self-loathing.  When my mind was finally ready to change, I began to open my eyes to what the dieting had done to me and from research I found out how starving slowed down my metabolism meaning that I was working against myself.  When you starve, your body automatically slows down metabolism and begins to store fat!!

So, the next time you think about signing up to that slimming club or buying the diet product, think, I mean REALLY think.  Is it worth it, the heartache, the feelings of failure, the financial cost to just end up where you were in the first place, or worse still, heavier than you were when you started?

There is a way to break this cycle, there is another way to lose weight.

If you are serious about losing weight but fed up of dieting, please like and follow my blog for great advice and tips to help you finally lose weight for good!

You can also read my book, The Anti-Diet Lifestyle – 4 Crazy Steps to Weight-Loss Success! This book contains all my weight loss secrets in an easy to follow formula. It’s available on Amazon in paperback and E-Book. I am serious about helping you achieve your weight loss goals!!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

 

A story that will motivate anyone!

She’d had enough, she’d finally hit rock bottom and felt like giving up.  For the first time, the thought of continuing on with her goal seemed more painful than letting it go.  It wasn’t that she hadn’t tried, it wasn’t that she hadn’t given it her very best shot.  In fact, it was the opposite.  Day after day, night after night she’d persisted.  The days had now turned into weeks, the weeks into months and now the months had turned into years.  She was tired, her spirit was low and the ache in her heart grew stronger every day.

She’d lost count of the times she wished she was someone else and not the person trapped inside a body she didn’t like.  The body she hated seeing a reflection of, the body that struggled to keep up with the torment it was being put through, the body that refused to change into something she could be proud of.

She remembered the early days when she was hopeful, sure that if she just did what they told her, then one day, one glorious day, her dream would come true.  Now though, all the struggle, the courage, the denial had just left her a shell of who she used to be.  How ironic she thought, that even though she had never felt emptier her whole life, she still felt as if she’d greedily devoured the entire contents of the supermarket judging by the weight that she’d put on.  In fact, with each diet, she felt emptier and emptier and yet, with each passing month she’d gain weight.  Except for the beginning that is, oh those were such sweet days. Full of hope and anticipation at the sheer joy and the thought of finally being able to wear whatever she liked!  She’d secretly imagined, the days she would spend at the beach in her little yellow bikini, the nights out late at the Christmas parties or a friend’s social gathering where she would finally feel like the belle of the ball.  But disappointment was a cloak she got used to wearing as the months went on because hope deflated and reappeared as a dream snatching monster.

In the last few months a new thought had begun to push its way into her mind.  At first, she refused to listen to it, dismissed it even.  She was a strong woman; she was determined and she had believed that persistence would surely lead her to her goal.  She was prepared for when the road became rocky, she was ready to face her demons head on but what she hadn’t prepared for was what would happen if she found out that, all along, she’d been on the wrong road? But the thought refused to go away and grew louder and louder until one morning when she was feeling so low and so helpless that she heard it clearly.  For the first time, she actually stopped all the noise and let in the silent voice that had been trying to get her attention.   ‘Change direction’ it said, firstly just in a faint whisper, then it said it again and again until, even though another soul would not have heard it, it felt like it was been announced from the hilltops, or that’s how it felt to her.  As the words began to sink into her very being, her heart began to flutter.  What was that feeling, she thought and stopped to truly let in the emotion it created inside her.  Then, after a while, the mysterious pieces fitted together and she knew exactly what she was feeling, a feeling she hadn’t felt in years, it was HOPE! Hope for the future, hope for the change in her life that she was looking for and hope that things would finally work out this time!!

With the silent words, came not only hope but sheer and utter determination to change.  She now not only knew she was on the wrong road but, more powerful than that was the courage the voice had given her to actually take a leap of faith.  It was just a matter of time before she would leave her old life allowing her to welcome in the new stranger that was knocking at her door.  He may be unknown to her now she thought but that would change as familiarity would inevitably bring them closer together as happens in all relationships.   She also knew without a doubt that her diet had to go and that her new best friend was and always had been her!  With this new found zest, she courageously took the first step to a new life and began reading the first chapter of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle by Sherry Taylor.

 

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? START YOUR ANTI-DIET JOURNEY TODAY!!

1.Read the book:

2.Join the community @ https://theantidiet.blog/my-account/pick-a-plan/

3.Ditch the diet!!

4.Start your new life!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

close up of heart shape

An emotional plea from your body

 

Dear Me

I’m writing this letter because talking to you hasn’t worked and I’m desperate for you to hear what I have to say.   I’ve been trying to tell you something for so long and tried so very many ways to communicate with you but nothing has worked and now I’m at my wits end.  I’m so worried that by the time you hear me (if you hear me at all) it will be too late and you would have wasted so much of your precious time on things that didn’t and don’t matter.  Don’t get me wrong, I get YOLO, I know that You Only Live Once but and this is a big BUT, YOLO does NOT always apply.  It doesn’t apply when you hurt me to the point that I am forced to stretch myself so far that I scar, it doesn’t apply when what you do clogs my arteries and it doesn’t apply when I have no energy and It doesn’t apply when I don’t look good for you.  I could go on but I hope you get the point.

By the way, I don’t want you to be upset with me for what I’m about to say, please I beg you, hear me out and truly listen before you judge my words.  I re-wrote this letter many times to make sure I didn’t come across as some goody two shoes, or some judgmental idiot and never from someone who doesn’t have your best interests at heart.  In fact, before I continue, I want to tell you that I am your best friend, I am your confidant, I am the keeper of your secrets and I am 100% on your side because I love you.  I care for you like no one else will or can.  When you hurt, I hurt every single time.  I cannot exist without you.

If you think that this letter is excessive, that I could have tried to communicate in another way, I am so sorry.  I really did try so many ways but you didn’t or couldn’t hear me.  If you still don’t believe that, think back and re-trace your steps to all the times when you felt helpless and out of control with your eating, or the times you spend hating me and wishing that I would change.  I was with you when you went into the shop to buy that family sized packet of treats, those pies, those cakes, those heavily processed foods.  I was with you every single time you sat down to eat so much that I began to feel numb, uncomfortable and ill.  In fact, I have spent nights, sitting with you as you watched TV grazing on chocolates, crisps or anything that you could lay your hands on that didn’t have a shred of nutrients in.  I am also with you when you drive when you could walk, browse social media when you could read, binge watch shows when you could be spending time in nature.  That’s not all either, because I am also with you when you starve me and ignore me when I scream out in hunger.  I suffer with you all the way.

I want to tell you how much you hurt me when I did the only thing I could to process all that you gave me.  You didn’t seem to understand or care about why I did what I did, you just hated me.  The reason I am telling you this is just as I hurt when you hurt, you hurt when I hurt.  Please can you understand that?  I am the only thing you have that lets you live in this world because without me you wouldn’t exist.  When you give me things that destroy me, I don’t react badly because I want to punish you, I react badly because I don’t have a choice.  I react badly because it punishes me.  It’s not just on the inside either, because when you feed me with things that hurt me internally, they also affect me externally.  You seem to think that I should just be able to bounce back and not be affected by what you do but, whether you know it or not, you and me are inseparable.  By the way, I also need you to know that what you put inside me is not just food either, it’s what you see, it’s what you do, it’s what you read and it’s what you hear so please be aware of that when you are making choices, because you might end up punishing both of us more.

Every single time you look in the mirror and hate what you see, you are hating me.  I know that, don’t think that I don’t.  Then the vicious circle of you hurting, making me hurt, making you hurt starts again.  Please, before it is too late, can you at least consider that this might be true.  Why don’t you start a journal if it helps, start tracking when you feel bad and see if you can connect what you put inside me with how you are feeling.  Also, could you consider that maybe what’s making you feel good instantly, is not making you feel good in the long term?

I am really hoping that you can stand in my shoes for a change and actually realise how much better of a relationship we would have if only you treated me even a little better?  I want you to know that I really care for you, that I want you to be proud of me so that when you see me, you’ll love me.  I can promise you that you if start doing that, I will reward you a million times over.  If I could, I would do that even if you mistreated me, but I don’t have that ability.  Believe me, I have cried many a night because I feel so useless sometimes.

I’d like you to spend more time with me, I’d like you to care for me like I care for you, I’d like you to treat me like you want to be treated.  In return, I will become your most powerful, life enhancing friend that you will feel whole and complete and enough – someone who can conquer the world!!

Forever in hope

Your body xxx

 

Hope you enjoyed reading this post.  If you are serious about losing weight but fed up of dieting, please like and follow my blog for great advice and tips to help you finally lose weight for good!

You can also read my book, The Anti-Diet Lifestyle – 4 Crazy Steps to Weight-Loss Success! This book contains all my weight loss secrets in an easy to follow formula. It’s available on Amazon in paperback and E-Book. I am serious about helping you achieve your weight loss goals!!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

The surprising reason why you must eat with six senses!!

Mindfulness is such a buzz word these days.  It’s used sometimes as a throw away remark to solve just about every single problem we have!  Whether you think it’s just a fad or if you are one of the people who believe in it or even if you are on the fence on this one, I can tell you that mindful eating works!  In reality, I use the word mindful but you could just as easily replace it with joyful eating, or satisfying eating or delicious eating even!!  The key to ‘mindful’ eating is that you experience eating in the here and now and with complete and utter guilt free enjoyment! 

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle takes mindful eating to a whole new level and will train you to eat using not just five but six senses!!  Don’t worry, there’s no spirituality involved if you don’t believe in it, you can just as easily call your sixth sense an instinct and there’s no doubt that instincts exist.  You only have to look at our fight or flight responses or a reflex action to know that there are aspects of our human bodies and minds that we don’t fully understand or control.  With this in mind, please keep an open mind as you read this blog because it will help you to not only enjoy your food but also to feel fuller and satisfied without a shred of guilt to be seen!

What are the six senses?

See

Hear

Touch

Smell

Taste

And then there’s the sixth sense, let’s call it intuition

And then there’s the sixth sense, let’s call it Intuition

How to eat mindfully

Set the scene

If you are new to this, I would suggest that the first thing you do is set the scene.  If you are not new to this, set the scene!!  This is because your surroundings play a big part in talking to your sub-conscious mind.  If they are positive and beautiful you are more likely to have positive and beautiful results.  The opposite speaks for itself, negative and ‘ugly’ results.

As a beginner, it will be best if you learn how to do it and make it a habit at home.  That way, you have full control of your surroundings.  If, however, you’re not able to for whatever reason, try a restaurant.  The key here is that you are somewhere you can fully engage with your food without distraction from friends, your partner, your children etc.  Circumstances will obviously dictate when and where but you will need to arrange a ‘date’ night with yourself on a regular basis until you are a veteran mindful eater!! 

Here are some reasons for this

Beautiful surroundings are more likely to put you in a positive state of mind

If you are comfortable with your surroundings, you can concentrate 100% on the task ahead.

You do not need to worry about the judgement of others

You are giving this task utmost importance

Your surroundings will enhance the experience (once you are used to it, your surroundings will be less influential to the experience of eating mindfully)

If you are at home:

Set a table, if you don’t have a table, use a beautiful tray, the best that you can afford.  Spend time arranging your table and tray for example:

Use a beautiful table cloth

Place appealing place-mats with care

Light a candle

Place a vase of flowers

Light an incense stick

Play soothing music that you love (not rock n’ roll!!)

Place a favourite ornament in the centre of the table

Use your best plates

Use your best cutlery

Use the fanciest glass you own for your choice of drink – this is not necessary but if you prefer to have a glass of water, juice whatever then do so

Place some positive affirmations beside you, a plaque or an inspiring picture will work great for this purpose

You

Dress up for the occasion – if you love dressing up

Dress down for the occasion – if you love cosy, comfortable clothes

Do NOT wear tight fitting clothes

Dinner

Pick one or a selection of dishes you absolutely love – remember this is not about nutrition right now, this is about learning to eat mindfully

Ideally, cook everything yourself but if this is totally impractical, purchase the object or objects of your desire

If you are outside

At a restaurant, choose the table that appeals to you the most.  Look for a window seat or further inside if there’s nice lighting or a candle or if it’s beside a beautiful picture.  You will feel better straight away.  It is more difficult this way, but if can be done.

Have a picnic!

If the weather is good enough, plan a picnic at the park! 

Use the best cutlery you have

Use the best plates you have

Use the best glass you have

Set a beautiful table cloth on the ground

Pick a spot that’s visually appealing to you

Pick a spot that’s physically appealing to you, such as in the sun (if you like sun) or in the shade (if you prefer shade).

‘Trying and failing, the ups and downs.  It’s like a heartbeat, without it, we would die’

Why does being mindful help when you are eating?

It will allow you to enjoy your food

It will keep you in the present moment

It will stop you feeling guilty

It will teach you how to eat again

It will teach you how to feel full – this is a major reason why we binge it.  We stuff food down our faces so fast and furiously that we forget to wait for the full signal our body is dying to give.  Once you are full, you will feel satisfied and you will not need to binge eat.

Let’s begin

When you eat, do so WITHOUT guilt. If the feeling rises up, be prepared to expel it immediately, over and over again:

See – take the time to look at your food, notice its shapes and its colours

Hear – as you chew or bite, notice the sound it makes

Touch – pick up your food with your hands (where practical to do so).  Notice its texture, it’s weight and it’s feel (is it smooth/rough, is it heavy/light etc)

Smell – Notice the smell/s.  Try and identify each smell, let your mouth water

Taste – Really taste your food.  Don’t rush it, experience it and experience it slowly.  Try and identify each item of food by its taste alone

And then there’s the sixth sense, let’s call it Intuition – this is the best part!!  Imagine the food making its way into your body, giving you energy, satisfying your hunger, extracting any nutrients.

Every now and then (you might like to time it to begin with, say every 5/10 minutes) – Stop and think about how your body feels.  The reason for this is you are teaching your mind to engage with your body (like it did effortlessly when you were a child) so that you can pick up the ‘full and satisfied’ signal.  Do not worry, at first you may find that you binge as you have always done.  With time, persistence and actual application of this process, you will begin to ‘find your full’.  When this happened to me, I was euphoric, I couldn’t believe what just happened because for years I was always either starving or stuffed to the point of feeling sick!

Repeat . . . Repeat . . . Repeat!!!

Do this exercise often until it becomes second nature!  Without knowing it, you will find that you have changed!! 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

 

For you Mum

Amazing Mother’s Day Gifts!!

This poem is dedicated to all the mums, grandmothers and great grandmothers out there! 

There’s a story behind how and why it was written and I’d like to share it with you in the hope that you will be able to relate to it.  For a while now, I had been mulling over the idea of writing a poem in time for Mother’s Day and the prospect had taken over my mind.  Words and phrases were coming to me at random times in the day and I started to make notes.  Finally, I sat down and began to write.  It took a long while to collect and jot down everything that I had noted down and everything that was swimming in my head.  The message I wanted to convey was very important to me and I needed to make sure that it was clear.  It was a message of triumph, it was a message of grand accomplishment and it was a message of hope!  I was very aware that in the course of pregnancy, many women undergo a significant change in their bodies.  They put on weight, they gain stretchmarks, they feel sick and they put their own lives on hold; but the reward for all this suffering is the miracle that is life. 

After giving birth, they are left with the joy that is motherhood and the very reason for their existence is changed forever more.  For me it was the same and more.  I was and am blessed to have two wonderful daughters without whom my life would lack that sparkle. 

‘With every wish, there comes a curse’ sang Bruce Springsteen and oh how true those words ring with motherhood, for your body is changed forever.  Many mothers, and I am no exception, are left with a body that is less firm, weakened, scarred and oftentimes overweight.  The poem I wanted to write would acknowledge this, but more powerfully, it would acknowledge that there is hope, that you can once again have a body that is joyous and beautiful, even if it is different.  To this end, I wrote and I deleted and I wrote until I decided to let some time pass, leaving the unfinished poem in my notebook.

Last Saturday, my youngest daughter who is now at university announced a visit.  Instantly, it lifted my spirits and I looked forward to our time together.  She bounced into my car as I picked her up and a thought niggled ‘ask her to help you with the poem’ it said.  After a beautiful lunch and a catch up about our lives, I broached the subject.  Reluctant at first, she agreed to help me and excitement pinched my cheeks at the prospect of the creative exercise we were about to do and of the ironic position this created; a mother and daughter writing a poem for Mother’s Day!

We sat side by side at the dining table with the words I’d written on a sheet of paper in front of us.  After a long silence, she said ‘let’s sit over there like the last time …’.  I knew exactly what she was referring to even though she didn’t finish the sentence.  She wanted us to sit at the small table in my conservatory for that was the first and last time we had ever written anything together.  It was for a eulogy for my wonderful father, her grandfather. 

Without a second’s thought, we moved to the table and sat opposite each other, just as we had that last time.  And, the words flowed, the verses almost forming themselves as we both brainstormed, and wrote and shouted until our throats were soar and our eyes twinkled.  The end result was better than I could ever have hoped for and delivered the message in a way I could only have imagined.  The elation made us jump in the air and high five, and in that second, I could see my five-year-old daughter again.

We both hope you enjoy reading our poem in the hope that it will give you the belief and courage to change into the best possible version of you!  Let’s make this message viral for all the mothers out there!!  Big shout out and love to you all!

Warrior Mum

https://www.spreadshirt.co.uk/shop/design/mothers+day+t-shirt+womens+premium+tank+top-D5c6c2bc85fd3e472b067263a?sellable=qrmDgyN9V5IqrlZ8Z9YD-917-16&view=1_2492

 

If you enjoyed this poem, download the book from

 

 

 

The surprising answer to ‘Do Anti-dieters eat everything on their plate?’!!

Food for thought!

I write my blogs for many reasons and one of them is to educate my readers about what the Anti-Diet Lifestyle would mean to them in practical terms.  In this blog, I’d like to answer a question asked my one such reader: ‘Do I eat everything on my plate’ now that I am an ‘Anti-Dieter? I had never given a thought to this before because since I started living my life according to the Anti-Diet Lifestyle principles, such questions do not enter my head.  Before though, was another thing altogether.  Not only was I constantly focused on my next snack and or meal but I was consciously aware that the more I ate, the more weight I would put on.  This would quite simply stress me out and more often than not, all the restriction and denial led me to having frequent ‘blow-outs’ where I would binge eat until I was numb.  I remember those days and nights so painfully well and, if you are in that position right now, my heart truly goes out to you.  It is such a desperate, relentless vicious circle that leaves you feeling depressed, worthless and fat among other negative emotions. 

Now, years after I became slim, is a completely different outlook for me around food and mealtimes.  I look forward to them, I thoroughly enjoy eating and I don’t feel guilty.  I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I still sometimes fall back into my old ways and start feeling bad if I’ve indulged in say a large slice of cake and some biscuits.  The difference now though is that I quickly remind myself that I’m not the old me anymore, that just having those things will not lead me to spiral out of control with my eating once again.  Luckily then, as soon as I realise that, I relax once more and go on with my day.  So, there is the key, it’s not that the old feelings are completely gone, but that the new feelings and actions override your old habits and beliefs leaving you to actually enjoy ALL food.  At this point, let me make it clear, I do NOT gorge on food and eat everything in sight because there is no way that you can do that and not be overweight.  The way I live now has freed me from all of that denial, restriction and self-loathing and what this does is allow you to eat what you like, make good choices most of the time AND feel TOTALLY and UTTERLY satisfied.  I do not feel hungry and neither do I feel that I am missing out at all.  I still chocolate and crisps and all things ‘nice’ on a regular basis also without feeling scared that I’ll put on weight.  I also now value my body and listen to the signals it gives me.  I feed it sugar when it asks and greens likewise lol!!

Onto the answer of the question and the reason for this blog.  When I prepare my food now, be it a day where I’m having pizza followed by chocolate and crisps or a day when I’ve opted for salmon, boiled vegetables and a jacket potato is that I eat everything on my plate 😊!  The reason for this is that I am the type of person that likes to finish what I started! From big things like writing a book, starting a business and giving up bad habits (like smoking) to the little things like answering an email, reading a novel or planting some seeds – I like to finish my project!  This does not mean that you have to be like that, whether you eat everything on your plate or choose to leave a bit is up to you.  The only difference from now to your new way of thinking with the Anti-Diet lifestyle though is the fact that whether you finish it all or leave a bit, the reason will not be for weight loss purposes, it will only be because you are full up or that you do not like what you decided to eat!

Happy Anti-Dieting!!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

For you Mum

This poem is dedicated to all the mums, grandmothers and great grandmothers out there! 

There’s a story behind how and why it was written and I’d like to share it with you in the hope that you will be able to relate to it.  For a while now, I had been mulling over the idea of writing a poem in time for Mother’s Day and the prospect had taken over my mind.  Words and phrases were coming to me at random times in the day and I started to make notes.  Finally, I sat down and began to write.  It took a long while to collect and jot down everything that I had noted down and everything that was swimming in my head.  The message I wanted to convey was very important to me and I needed to make sure that it was clear.  It was a message of triumph, it was a message of grand accomplishment and it was a message of hope!  I was very aware that in the course of pregnancy, many women undergo a significant change in their bodies.  They put on weight, they gain stretchmarks, they feel sick and they put their own lives on hold; but the reward for all this suffering is the miracle that is life. 

After giving birth, they are left with the joy that is motherhood and the very reason for their existence is changed forever more.  For me it was the same and more.  I was and am blessed to have two wonderful daughters without whom my life would lack that sparkle. 

‘With every wish, there comes a curse’ sang Bruce Springsteen and oh how true those words ring with motherhood, for your body is changed forever.  Many mothers, and I am no exception, are left with a body that is less firm, weakened, scarred and oftentimes overweight.  The poem I wanted to write would acknowledge this, but more powerfully, it would acknowledge that there is hope, that you can once again have a body that is joyous and beautiful, even if it is different.  To this end, I wrote and I deleted and I wrote until I decided to let some time pass, leaving the unfinished poem in my notebook.

Last Saturday, my youngest daughter who is now at university announced a visit.  Instantly, it lifted my spirits and I looked forward to our time together.  She bounced into my car as I picked her up and a thought niggled ‘ask her to help you with the poem’ it said.  After a beautiful lunch and a catch up about our lives, I broached the subject.  Reluctant at first, she agreed to help me and excitement pinched my cheeks at the prospect of the creative exercise we were about to do and of the ironic position this created; a mother and daughter writing a poem for Mother’s Day!

We sat side by side at the dining table with the words I’d written on a sheet of paper in front of us.  After a long silence, she said ‘let’s sit over there like the last time …’.  I knew exactly what she was referring to even though she didn’t finish the sentence.  She wanted us to sit at the small table in my conservatory for that was the first and last time we had ever written anything together.  It was for a eulogy for my wonderful father, her grandfather. 

Without a second’s thought, we moved to the table and sat opposite each other, just as we had that last time.  And, the words flowed, the verses almost forming themselves as we both brainstormed, and wrote and shouted until our throats were soar and our eyes twinkled.  The end result was better than I could ever have hoped for and delivered the message in a way I could only have imagined.  The elation made us jump in the air and high five, and in that second, I could see my five-year-old daughter again.

We both hope you enjoy reading our poem in the hope that it will give you the belief and courage to change into the best possible version of you!  Let’s make this message viral for all the mothers out there!!  Big shout out and love to you all!

Warrior Mum

Exercise – Is it fun or a chore with the Anti-Diet Lifestyle?

Find something you love to do.

I wrote an article about exercise with the Anti-Diet Lifestyle previously and, on the back of that, I need to answer a follow up question :

‘Do I see it (exercise) as fun or a chore with The Anti-Diet Lifestyle?

Once again, I’d first like to say what a fantastic question that is!  It has forced me to revisit my journey to weight-loss freedom and dig deep into my feelings so that I can answer this question with the absolute truth.  I see no gain in lying to anyone because I know that, if I am able to achieve my lifetime goal of helping others break the vicious cycle of dieting, I have to pave a way that not only works, but one which points out the potholes and obstacles you’re likely to come across so that you are fully prepared. 

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” *

To this end, here is my brutal answer: Most of the time I find starting my exercise routine a complete and total chore!  There, I have said it!  After much trial and error, I found that:

  • I hated the gym because I felt trapped and the machines just felt like items of torture to me!
  • Aerobics classes were fun but I could never be bothered to actually go after a couple of times.  I’d come home to work, knowing full well that I had a class to attend but, with the best will in the world, I always managed to find some very pressing matter that had to be attended to meaning I was unable to go!
  • Yoga – I have never even tried it perhaps for the same reason I never went to the aerobics classes!!  All I do know is that yoga is something that I might try at some point in my life
  • Swimming – I absolutely love swimming BUT I equally hate the fact that you have to spend an hour showering, dressing and making your way home afterwards.  This is made much worse in the winter months when it is freezing as well!
  • Organised games; football, netball, hockey etc.  Unfortunately, I found out very early in life that I absolutely sucked at these and as a consequence hate participating in them!

With all these failures behind me, I was still determined to find something or somethings that I could tolerate and sometimes even enjoy.  I remembered, when I was a teenager, the only sport I was good at was long distance running and this memory got me thinking that perhaps I could give that a try.  It was so very difficult at first (and still is on some days), but, unlike the activities above, I found that once I was mid-run, I actually, truly enjoyed myself.  Fast forward around 8 years and I am still running!! It keeps me fit, it keeps my mind sharp and I love meeting new people on my runs too.  I have found there is also great camaraderie between fellow runners and I look forward to seeing the familiar faces!  I also come across new runners and we always send words of encouragement to each other which just adds to my thorough love of this wonderful activity!

In summary, I have to admit that I do view exercise as a chore BUT only at the outset.  Once I’m off and out (or on my treadmill in the bitter, cold winter months) I really truly love it.

My advice to anyone then would be to find an activity, it could even be something like gardening or hiking for example but love it at some level you must if you are to persevere with it and take advantage of its huge health benefits for the mind, body and soul!

*Quote by Benjamin Franklin

 

WRITTEN BY SHERRY TAYLOR

AUTHOR OF THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE – 4 CRAZY STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS!

 

Do you have to exercise regularly for the Anti-Diet to work?

No pain, no gain?

People have asked me a lot of questions about how the Anti-Diet Lifestyle actually achieves weight loss and concerns about exercise come up frequently.  Things like:

Do you exercise?

Do you exercise regularly?

Did you have to exercise to lose weight?

I love these questions because they challenge me to look at The Anti-Diet Lifestyle from the perspective of people wanting to lose weight.  Over the years, I just kind of fell into my new life and almost even began to take my new-found slimness for granted.  Challenges like these from people who have read or are reading my book help me to remain focused on my goal which is to help others lose weight too.  I’m very conscious that I need to give people detail and not just skim over important issues merely because I no longer have a problem with my health and lifestyle.  The danger of falling foul of not appreciating where I am is the loss of knowledge about how I got there in the first place!

I’m going to answer these questions for you in two ways:

  1. Do you have to exercise for the Anti-Diet to work?
  2. Do I exercise and if so, do I exercise on a regular basis?

I chose these because they will give you my honest opinion from both a personal perspective (as I have experience of it) and from the perspective of my readers (who are about to experience it).  This way, you will be able to make up your own mind about my approach to weight loss and whether you feel it might work for you (I truly hope that it does).

It’s no secret that my personal journey to weight loss freedom began when I’d just about had enough of dieting and failing and my yo-yo cycle of weight gain v weight loss; I was not searching for a new solution to my problem, oh no, it was quite the opposite in fact, it all began because I gave up.  One day, I woke up and knew I’d had it, that I couldn’t do this crap anymore.  I was tired of holding in my stomach, I was tired of feeling fat, I was tired of feeling guilty and most of all I was tired of my total addiction and obsession with food.  So, I let go of it all and without knowing it began the process that would eventually release me from the chains and lead me to what I’d always wanted – to be slim!

  1. Do you have to exercise for the Anti-Diet to work?

The great news is ‘NO’, you do not have to exercise for the Anti-Diet to work.  I lost weight because I did the opposite of what I’d been doing before:

I STOPPED:

  1. Dieting
  2. Weighing myself
  3. Surrounding myself with dieting paraphernalia – the dieting magazines, the weighing scales, the ‘fat’ photo of me on the fridge, the ‘slim’ of me by my bedside, the ‘I might fit into that one day’ clothes’, the ‘diet’ foods etc, etc.

I BEGAN:

  1. Learning to eat
  2. Learning to enjoy food without guilt
  3. Wearing clothes that actually fit me
  4. To love myself

The result of this was that my focus moved from dieting to what I can only describe as anti-dieting!!  It freed me to make choices based on information rather than desperation.  As corny as it sounds, I went on a journey to re-discover myself and who I really was and what I wanted from life.  Instead of researching the latest diet I could try; I began to research nutrition, well-being and anything that allowed me to build my self-esteem.  I found that I felt different, that for the first time in my life I was living from a position of power and I actually found myself gravitating towards foods that were better for me and I no longer needed to binge or starve myself either.

  • Do I exercise and if so, do I exercise on a regular basis?

The answer to this is ‘YES’ and ‘YES’!  Before The Anti-Diet, my relationship with exercise was sketchy to say the least.  I would join a fitness class, take up swimming or running but find that my enthusiasm only lasted a couple of weeks before I stopped.  Once I found that I was losing weight, I also found that I had more energy and, as my confidence grew, I naturally started to exercise.  It was very little to begin with but it was regular enough for me to form a habit.  I swapped my morning, mile long drive to the train station for a walk.  In the beginning it was so difficult that I had to stop numerous times just so I could catch my breath, but, in time, it became easy.  I then graduated to jogging and now run twice a week and walk at every opportunity!!

I sincerely wish the same for you and wish you the best of luck in your own journey.  May you find your way there too!

If you are serious about losing weight but fed up of dieting, please like and follow my blog for great advice and tips to help you finally lose weight for good!

You can also read my book, The Anti-Diet Lifestyle – 4 Crazy Steps to Weight-Loss Success! This book contains all my weight loss secrets in an easy to follow formula. It’s available on Amazon in paperback and E-Book. I am serious about helping you achieve your weight loss goals!!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

What actually led me to lose weight?

Enjoy your food!

People have said to me it’s all very well I’m suggesting they stop dieting but how does that help them lose weight?  I mean, with dieting and especially if you’re following a particular diet programme or club, there is a clear path that includes what you can and can’t eat, what is forbidden and what is restricted (treats).  Then there’s the daily/weekly weigh-in that is used to track progress.  The scales cannot be argued with, they display a number which will, in no uncertain terms tell you whether you are closer or further away from your weight loss goal.  These two actions coupled together make it so much easier for people to know what they are supposed to do and whether it is working in order to shed unwanted weight.

I totally get that, I really do and it’s no secret that if you do as they say, you will reach your goal.  There is a BIG problem with these diets though- It is almost impossible to keep them up.  Some people only last a few days but others last longer and do manage to lose weight.  A study mentioned in a BBC article on 8th August 2013 found that, of the people that lost weight when following a defined plan, only 20% kept it off for at least two years and of these only 16% maintained their weight loss after 5 years!!!

So let’s get to what are the outcomes when you embark on a diet, either with a plan or not, in order of importance:

  1. Follow it strictly and lose weight for good – A very small percentage of people achieve this.
  2. Follow it for a couple of days/weeks/months, lose weight then give up and regain the weight – This is more likely to happen then point 1.
  3. Follow it for a couple of days/weeks/months then give up and start again, then give up and start again – Remain in a constant state of yo-yo dieting – The sad truth is that this is the most likely outcome!!
  4. Follow for a couple of days/weeks/months and then give up completely without having lost weight at all – This is more likely to happen then point 1.

With the statistics quoted above, I think the only winners here are the slimming clubs!!  I have noticed a very scary trend lately where they are suggesting you remain members not only while you are on their plan but for life because otherwise you will put the weight back on!!  This is clearly to frighten their members into retaining paid up membership or else risk the chance of gaining weight.  You only have to google such clubs to find out the astonishing cost of fees, specially prepared ‘diet’ meals, membership, magazines etc, etc!

Now, back to the question asked by my readers ‘what actually led me to losing weight and for good?’.  Firstly, I am in no way judging anyone who is on one of these plans and I truly wish you the best of luck.  What I know for certain, is that for me, they do not work and I recommend you look up the statistics for yourself to see how much they work for others.  If you are new to my blogs, let me quickly summarise what the Anti-Diet Lifestyle – 4 Crazy Steps to Weight Loss Success’ is all about.  After years of being in a constant and unrelenting cycle of bingeing and starving myself and having tried numerous diets in a really desperate bid to lose weight, I stumbled across a formula that worked for me. 

Crazy Step 1 –     Stop Weighing Yourself

Crazy Step 2 –     Stop Dieting

Crazy Step 3 –     Break Up with Food

Crazy Step 4 –     Let Go Of …… Anything negative about yourself

I have identified two main factors that led to actual weight loss:

  1. I ate less without realising it.  – Because I didn’t have a set calorie or unit/points limit, because I knew I wasn’t on a diet and because I didn’t feel like I was breaking my diet I learned to relax around food.  The old me, once I’d eaten something forbidden, or exceeded my daily calorie allowance would go on a ‘what the hell, I might as well make the most of it’ binge!  My view was, if my diet was already broken, I might as well eat anything and everything that I craved or fancied at the time.   I’ve even been known to go to the late-night shop and purchase chocolate bars, crisps, pies and of course the diet cola to wash it all down with.  To top that, I carried on eating even if I was full, even if I had to undo the zip on my jeans and even if I had to change into loose fitting tracksuit bottoms!! 

When I stopped dieting, I realised:

  • I no longer needed to treat myself to anything!  This took the pressure off massively from me wanting all the things that were forbidden.  I found because I was allowed to have them, I craved them less and less as time went on.
  • I learned to enjoy my food, to taste it, to smell it.  I ate more slowly because I wasn’t in a hurry to stuff it down in case it would be snatched away.  This process helped me discover what feeling full and satisfied felt like, something I hadn’t experienced since my teenage years.  When I was full, I could stop eating and not feel like I was missing out!#
  • I no longer felt desperate around food and this stopped the constant ‘foodie’ thoughts that used to rage inside my mind, leaving me unable to focus on anything else but my next meal.
  • I no longer had to binge eat like time was running about before I’d be on a diet again.  This allowed me to enjoy food, even what is classed as ‘treats’ without fear that I’d never be able to eat them again!

Because I wasn’t weighing myself all the time (at my worst I used to weigh myself about three or four times a day!), I didn’t throw in the towel each time:

  • I’d starved myself all week and found I’d not lost any weight
  • I was excited because I felt I’d lost weight but when I weighed myself, I found out I’d gained weight
  • I’d tried my very best all week, sticking to my calorie allowance and found that I’d actually gained weight

Ignorance certainly is bliss because not weighing myself freed me from constant judgement and constant fear of weight gain.  I no longer gaged a good or bad day by the number displayed on the scales.  My self-esteem remained intact as a result and I learned to focus my attention on other areas of my life.

2. I ate better without realising it. – As I began to master the art of not dieting and not weighing myself, I was then able to focus more on what I was eating.  I began to research nutrition and healthy eating, I actually enjoyed discovering new foods.  An easy fix for me was to begin by adding vitamins to my diet (what I ate and not to be confused with dieting!).  This quest led me to:

  • Try lots of new fruits and find the ones I really, truly loved.
  • I naturally, and without feeling I was losing something, began to gravitate towards foods that were not only good for me but that led to weight loss!
  • I began to love the extra energy and zest I now found I had. There was a spring in my step that I hadn’t experienced in years!
  • Researching and adding great herbs and spices to foods I already loved, instantly making it a win-win because I loved the food and the herbs and spices made them healthier!

Throughout my transition phase, I focused heavily on self-care and self-love.  With this new-found lens that I used to view my life, I automatically and happily made choices that resulted in positive outcomes for me!  I read any inspirational blog, book, quote, article that I could lay my hands on.  I surrounded myself with positive statements, I journaled about things I loved about myself, I stopped reading dieting stories and articles and I stopped focusing on weight loss.  The result?  I lost weight and years later, I have retained that weight loss!!

I sincerely wish the same for you and wish you the best of luck in your own journey.  May you find your way there too!

If you are serious about losing weight but fed up of dieting, please like and follow my blog for great advice and tips to help you finally lose weight for good!

You can also read my book, The Anti-Diet Lifestyle – 4 Crazy Steps to Weight-Loss Success! This book contains all my weight loss secrets in an easy to follow formula. It’s available on Amazon in paperback and E-Book. I am serious about helping you achieve your weight loss goals!!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle




How to survive the holiday festivities without feeling hungry or missing out

Happy Holidays

‘Tis the season to be jolly

Fa la la la la, la la la la (fa la la la la, la la lala)’

(Excerpt from ‘Deck the Halls’ written by Thomas Oliphantt)

This time of year used to be a bittersweet time for me.  I loved the fact that everyone was happy,there was such hope and excitement in the air and of course there were the social side of things.  Parties,gatherings, family get togethers you name it, the invites were there.  The downside to it all was the mountain of temptation that I would be met with whenever I attended these.  Of course, I used dread what I would wear as well so mostly I just felt bad about myself and jealous of people who were slim.

So, how do we deal with this dilemma?  The easiest way would obviously be not accepting the invitations in the first place but what would be the point of that?  Who wants to have a miserable Christmas and miss out on all the fun and festivities?  The whole point of life is to squeeze every last drop of happiness from it for ourselves and those close to us.  In fact, at this time of year, it’s so wonderful to see these good wishes extend to those less fortunate than us as well which only makes the whole time more magical.

In my dark old dieting days, these times were more dread than anticipation however.  Don’t get me wrong, I wanted all that the festive season brings but I could never really enjoy it because I was terrified of putting on even more weight and ending up heavier than ever before.  To top that, I was desperate to look good at these social events but, despite my best efforts I always ended up stuffing my face all through December and into mid-January leaving me worse off year on year.  Guilt and shame became my best friends and the only respite I had were those wonderful,carefree but terribly short moments when I would feed my face with everything I could get hold of.  I had gotten quite good at looking as if I hadn’t eaten a lot while sneaking as much as I could into my mouth unnoticed.  I don’t mind admitting that I even put food aside in my handbag and ate it when no one was looking or as I made my way to the bathroom. Even thinking about that now makes me cringe with shame.

I am so happy to say that those times are behind me and have been for many years.  I now know how to deal with any situation like this by putting myself in ‘Ambassador mode’.  What is that you ask?  Well, I call it this because I know that being the Ambassador of my body and soul gives me the responsibility of doing what is in the best interests for not just my mind (that’s screaming, eat everything!) but my body also (that whispers, please don’t hurt me anymore).  To trigger the Ambassador mode, say out loud(for maximum effect) or whisper to yourself if it is not appropriate ‘I am the Ambassador of my body and soul.  I will do everything in my power to seek out what is good for me’.   So,when I’m in these situations, this is how I prepare for them and deal with them:

‘I am the Ambassador of my body’

DO

  • Wear nice but comfortable clothes.  I used to be a firm believer that the only way I could look good was if I was wearing extremely tight, figure hugging clothes.  I now know that this is of course not true.  If I’m going to attend an event where food is available, I have in my wardrobe my ‘eat as much as you like’ clothes.  I have casual and formal outfits so that I am prepared for any occasion. Remember, you can look good in clothes that don’t suck every last ounce of breath out of you.  The reason for this is that when you eat anything whilst wearing tight clothing, you will very quickly start to feel uncomfortable.  As soon as this happens, you start to feel bad and guilty.  These negative feelings will crush your self-esteem and are more likely to make you want to say ‘what the heck, I might as well stuff my face now I feel so bad anyway’.
  • Eat the food that you love.  I am a firm believer of ‘what you resist,persists’.  The old me would defiantly resist the foods I craved for and opt for salad, or fruit options.  All this did was make my cravings grow in to monsters, my mouth water like Niagara Falls until I couldn’t take it anymore and gave in.  Again, once the monsters were let loose, I ate like there was no tomorrow, not even tasting anything after the first couple of mouthfuls followed by the inevitable feelings of unworthiness and inadequacy. 

It all changed when I gave myself permission from the outset to enjoy myself. I ate what I liked and really enjoyed it.  I also was very mindful as I chewed, making sure I could taste everything and feel the texture of it so that my eating experience was enhanced.  Afterwards I felt great because I had really enjoyed eating and didn’t feel guilty.  This meant that I never felt desperate and I ate less than if I had tried to deny myself at first.

DON’T

  • Never bargain with yourself that if you eat at asocial event, you’ll be stricter with yourself the next day or days.  This just tells your brain to eat everything in sight so that you can make the most of it before the starving begins.  Just think about when you have been on a restrictive calorie diet how your hunger grows and grows, well, if you tell yourself that the restriction is coming, your brain will immediately try and consume enough so it’s less likely to be hungry the next day. 

Instead, do not count the calorie intake.  Eat what you like and be happy that you did.  This way, your brain is relaxed and not prepared for combat.  The next day you remember how great a time you had and carry on with your life. 

  • Do not feel guilty or bad about yourself.  I don’t know about you but in the past, I always felt bad if I was eating anything that was ‘forbidden’.  After eating, I would constantly try and calculate the number of calories I had consumed.  If I was at a friend’s house and I found some weighing scales, I would immediately jump on them to see if I’d put on weight.  I’d wake the next day full of guilt and remorse which just continued to feed the vicious cycle of binge and starvation for me.

Remind yourself you are in Ambassador mode

At every given opportunity, remind yourself that you are the Ambassador of your body.  In this mode,you must let yourself enjoy life, you should taste the food, you should allow yourself to eat it guilt free.  Tell yourself that if you are happy, then it is OK. If there is fruit and vegetables available, have these as well.  Tell yourself that you deserve the nutrients that are in there, that your body will thank you for it.  Feel smug as you put things inside your body,tell yourself that you are amazing and ask your body to lead you to what you’d like to eat.  This concept may feel strange at first but believe me it is very powerful and will help you to easily make choices that are good for your body and soul.

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 
 

 

 

Who wants to lose weight?

Stop Dieting to lose weight! I know it sounds totally crazy when I suggest this idea to most people and if you’re reading this you might feel the same too.  I mean how could you possibly lose weight unless you’re on a diet because it’s all about no pain, no gain right?  Well, this belief could be the very thing holding you back because I’m here to tell you that this IS another way to lose weight without dieting AND keep it off for good!

Stop Dieting to Lose Weight!

Before I go any further, let me tell you that I have been right where you are at this moment, desperately wanting to lose weight but failing.  It then goes without saying that I know how desperate it makes you feel and how being overweight crushes your self-esteem so much so that it affects every area of your life.

As hard as I’ve tried to trace back the steps, I cannot to this day tell you when something must have clicked inside of me and my real and permanent weight loss journey began.  What I do know for sure, is that it did begin and it did work!  I am and have been slim and fit for over ten years now and for many years I was informally sharing all the things that had worked for me.  So many people started telling me that I should document my journey so that it would be easier for me to spread the message which would allow me to help so many more people.  It took a few years of mulling the idea over and I was very hesitant because I didn’t know if anyone would be interested in listening to a ‘nobody’ who claimed to have found the secret formula for long term weight loss!  Gradually, over time,I thought that even if documenting my secrets would help just one extra person,then the effort would be worth it and so The Anti-Diet Lifestyle was born! 

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle was born!

It took a lot of soul searching to think back over the entire process that finally began my weight loss journey and led to me being who I am today.  I did this because I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss anything off the message I wanted to deliver.  I knew that the more detail I included, the more likely it would be that someone else could be helped.  In fact, even now, if I think of anything else that will help someone lose weight, I write it down and update The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

I’ve also made it really easy to follow the plan by breaking it down into what I call ‘The four crazy steps!’.  That’s not all either because I’ve also included:

  • Tips to increase your weight loss success
  • Motivators for when you are feeling down
  • A survival guide for when you feel you are at rock bottom
  • Recipes that you can try

I am so determined to help anyone struggling with weight loss issues that until the 16th of December you can download my book for free from the Amazon store.  All you have to do is click on the link below:

I wish everyone reading this a Very Merry Festive Season!!

You can also follow me on facebook and Instagram for daily information and inspiration to help you on your journey.

https://www.facebook.com/TheAntiDietLifestyle/

https://www.instagram.com/livingtheantidietlifestyle/?hl=en

SO, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR, CLICK ON THE LINK AND DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE COPY NOW!!



Do you want to lose weight?

Stop Dieting to lose weight! I know it sounds totally crazy when I suggest this idea to most people and if you’re reading this you might feel the same too.  I mean how could you possibly lose weight unless you’re on a diet because it’s all about no pain, no gain right?  Well, this belief could be the very thing holding you back because I’m here to tell you that this IS another way to lose weight without dieting AND keep it off for good!

Stop Dieting to Lose Weight!

Before I go any further, let me tell you that I have been right where you are at this moment, desperately wanting to lose weight but failing.  It then goes without saying that I know how desperate it makes you feel and how being overweight crushes your self-esteem so much so that it affects every area of your life.

As hard as I’ve tried to trace back the steps, I cannot to this day tell you when something must have clicked inside of me and my real and permanent weight loss journey began.  What I do know for sure, is that it did begin and it did work!  I am and have been slim and fit for over ten years now and for many years I was informally sharing all the things that had worked for me.  So many people started telling me that I should document my journey so that it would be easier for me to spread the message which would allow me to help so many more people.  It took a few years of mulling the idea over and I was very hesitant because I didn’t know if anyone would be interested in listening to a ‘nobody’ who claimed to have found the secret formula for long term weight loss!  Gradually, over time,I thought that even if documenting my secrets would help just one extra person,then the effort would be worth it and so The Anti-Diet Lifestyle was born! 

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle was born!

It took a lot of soul searching to think back over the entire process that finally began my weight loss journey and led to me being who I am today.  I did this because I wanted to make sure I didn’t miss anything off the message I wanted to deliver.  I knew that the more detail I included, the more likely it would be that someone else could be helped.  In fact, even now, if I think of anything else that will help someone lose weight, I write it down and update The Anti-Diet Lifestyle.

I’ve also made it really easy to follow the plan by breaking it down into what I call ‘The four crazy steps!’.  That’s not all either because I’ve also included:

  • Tips to increase your weight loss success
  • Motivators for when you are feeling down
  • A survival guide for when you feel you are at rock bottom
  • Recipes that you can try

I am so determined to help anyone struggling with weight loss issues that until the 16th of December you can download my book for free from the Amazon store.  All you have to do is click on the link below:

I wish everyone reading this a Very Merry Festive Season!!

You can also follow me on facebook and Instagram for daily information and inspiration to help you on your journey.

https://www.facebook.com/TheAntiDietLifestyle/

https://www.instagram.com/livingtheantidietlifestyle/?hl=en

SO, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR, CLICK ON THE LINK AND DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE COPY NOW!!

Why you should NEVER hate on yourself if you want to lose weight!

Do you think your thoughts about yourself don’t matter?  Do you believe talking down to yourself or thinking you are ugly or fat will somehow motivate you to become the best version of yourself?

I think the answer to the above questions is a ‘yes’ for many of us.  It certainly used to be for me.  I remember religiously following advice in slimming magazines, internet articles and posts on social media about how you could use self-shaming (self-hate) to lose weight.   I totally bought into it because my happiness (or lack of it) was dependent on how much I weighed.  Needless to say, I was happy when I was heading in the direction of weight loss and extremely unhappy when I was not.  I was so desperate to be thin that I believed that this was going to be the answer to my dreams.

Let’s apply this in practical terms because I think the answer to the above questions should be a resounding ‘no’ and I am going to use a few examples to show you why I believe that to be the case.   I have randomly selected three situations where self-shaming is used but of course there are many more!  In essence though, all of my counter-arguments can apply to any form of this type of motivation stimulation!!

Example 1

Place a ‘fat’ photo of yourself in clear sight

Why, because it will be a constant reminder of what you do NOT want to look like.  It is particularly recommended to pin one of these on the front of your fridge as a deterrent before opening the door!

Example 2

Place a ‘thin’ photo of yourself in clear sight

Why, because it will remind you of how you once looked and how you would like to look again.  As with example 1 above, the advice suggests you pin it on the front of your fridge to hinder the chances of you breaking your diet!

Example 3

Buy a beautiful item of clothing in a size that you would like to be and place it in a prime location in your wardrobe

Why, because every time you reach into your wardrobe, the sight of the said item will spur you on to stick to your diet

Now, don’t get me wrong, I do think the fundamental idea behind these suggestions is wholeheartedly good but it is the suggestions themselves that are bad.  By that I mean there are many things we CAN do to motivate ourselves but self-shaming certainly is not it!!

Why then, do I think these are more of a hindrance then help is this:

Example 1

That fat photo on the fridge might just motivate you to not open the fridge door in the short term, but what it is actually doing is causing long term damage to your self-esteem.  Whilst the act seems innocent and well-meaning, you are actually telling yourself subconsciously that you are not good enough; That you are imperfect and that image of yourself is actually placed there to mock all the imperfections you are trying to repel.  It makes you live in the future, robbing you of any happiness in the here and now which is all we really have.  How very dangerous is that?!

Example 2

The thin photo on the fridge sounds great, doesn’t it?  You are faced with an image of how you used to look and how you would love to look right now.  The problem with this is that it forces you to live in the past and makes your happiness something for the future.  Like the ‘fat’ photo, it also tells you that you are not good enough, that in order for you to be happy, you need to return to your former ‘thin’ state.  Your sub-conscious is a very powerful force.  One that you cannot see and for the most part aren’t even aware it exists, but powerful it is!!  When you constantly tell yourself that you’re not good enough, your sub-conscious mind will believe it whether it is true or not.  It will then go out of its way to keep you that way.

Example 3

When you hang on to item/s of clothing that is/are too small for you, you find yourself in a continuous state of desperation.  It means you will beat yourself up each time you fail to live up to unrealistic expectations.  You will feel guilty and inadequate each time you see the item/s; you will be more prone to getting caught in the starve binge cycle and ultimately you are more likely to fail because your sub-conscious is constantly being bombarded by images the said item/s that you currently cannot wear.

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

How wearing the right shoes can make you fitter

If you ever go to a gym, I will bet that you ALWAYS wear a pair of trainers.  I mean why wouldn’t you because wearing anything other than that would be an instant end to your planned exercise as you wouldn’t be able to use the equipment wearing any other type of foot attire. Likewise, if you are planning to go for a jog or a hike or play a ball game, it would be a total exercise nightmare; therefore, I can predict with great certainty that you would also wear footwear befitting for the occasion.

At the gym (if you visit one) or any other planned exercise aside, a killer heel, a tight-fitting fashionable shoe or any uncomfortable but beautiful footwear can also have an adverse effect on your level of fitness.  In fact, they may completely foil any chance you may have had to exercise say on a night out, at work or any other occasion.  It is precisely at times like these, you can very cleverly fit a little (or a lot) of exercise into your life with minimum effort or additional time cost involved that produces huge results.  Why is this you may ask?  Well, any activity, be it social or not, holds within it an opportunity for exercise!  To begin with, let me give you some examples:

Commute to work

Like many of us, you may have to commute to work.  It may be that your commute is short, or on the other hand, you, like me, could be one of those people whose commute lasts over an hour each way (mine is 1.45 hours each way).  So, even if you have a relatively short commute say a ten or fifteen minute walk, you may be currently driving or taking some sort of public transport.  Stop and think about what a great opportunity it would be if you were to decide to add some exercise to this daily routine?  Here are just two options:

Walk – Some or part of the way.

Cycle – Some or part of the way.

Social occasions

If you think about it, there are definitely opportunities that can be taken advantage of on a night out.  In fact, you may already be taking part in these without even realising that you are exercising, but exercising you are!!

Dance – On a night out with friends, if an opportunity exists to dance, you can partake in this physical activity whilst actually enjoying yourself.

Walk –   When making your way to meeting your friends, you can choose to walk all the way (if it’s not too far) or part of the way

But here’s the thing.  If you choose to wear uncomfortable, tight fitting shoes, you will NOT be able to take advantage of these fantastic opportunities when you are faced with them.  Whilst I am certainly not asking you to ditch those beautiful shoes that make you look absolutely awesome, I am suggesting that you make a couple of changes to your existing getting ready for work/going out routine:

  1. Buy a pair of very comfortable shoes
  2. Make sure they are a colour that will ‘go’ with anything or at least most things:
    1. Formal occasions – I have a pair of I have a black pair of trainers. These allow me to walk both comfortably and briskly.
    2. Social occasions – I suggest you purchase flat ‘shiny’ shoes. Trust me on this, dancing is a fantastic exercise and no one will notice if you are wearing flat shoes or not.  If you really don’t want to wear them, opt to dance without shoes!
  3. Obtain a bag that you can carry your lovely shoes in to and from your place of work or social activity
  4. Place a plastic bag inside in case of rain resulting in wet shoes

Armed with this kit, you can easily flip from wearing the comfortable shoes for ‘exercising’ and your fancy shoes for when you are not.  Win – Win if you ask me!!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

An open letter to my diet

Dear Diet

I never thought I would have the guts to write this letter especially not for all to see but I am finally ready and brave enough to do it!  I hate to tell you this but I have been feeling that something was wrong with our relationship for a long time but I kept on giving it another go because I always believed that the next time it would work out.  But every ‘next time’ didn’t work, it never really did no matter how many promises you made to me.  Don’t get me wrong, there were days and sometimes weeks when I did feel like we were getting somewhere and some days that I felt so very happy.  I mean, do you remember the fun we would have when I managed to stick to you all day?  Then when I would weigh myself and see the amount of weight I’d lost, I’d feel deliriously happy all day long.  I think my happiest times with you were when I managed to do everything you said even though it was so very hard.  I would wake up with you on my mind and just a glance at my body would remind me that you’d stayed with me and I used to get this bubbling excitement in my stomach that this was it, that I’d finally made it!  Oh, how smug I used to feel on those days!!

Don’t get too big-headed reading this because you and I both know that the good days have been few and the bad days so many that I’ve lost count.  You see it took me a long time to finally realise that you only really cared about you, that this relationship was all one way, your way!!  I’ve only got myself to blame to be totally honest because it was always me that tried to give us another go.  You never changed even though you sometimes called yourself ‘new’, ‘better’, ‘improved’ but I can now see that it was all just a guise and that you would never ever change.

I have to say that you really hurt me and it may take a while before my emotional scars heal.  I mean, let’s be honest with each other for a moment and admit that the whole meal replacement thing that you sold me was just pie in the sky.  I can’t believe you really expected me to be able to drink a shake instead of eating my lunch and be satisfied.  I remember when for the third week in a row I did this and how very hard it was for me to see other people eating.  I thought you might have felt bad for me but I couldn’t have been more wrong!  You just told me to get on with it and that if I didn’t, I would remain fat.  I tried hard, it was punishing and it did work… but only so long as I didn’t start eating normally again.  Of course, I couldn’t live the rest of my life having shakes for lunch and when I did start to eat food again, you betrayed me yet again.

Then there was the time you said that I should restrict my calorie intake, drink diet drinks and eat low fat foods.  This just made me climb the walls with hunger and desperation!  The result was that I put on more weight, was low on energy and felt like a totally depressed failure.  Oh, and let’s not forget the high fat, low protein diet which was another total and utter disaster!!

Anyway, I am so fed up of you treating me so badly that I have finally had enough.  I can honestly say that I don’t want you in my life anymore!  As far as I am concerned, my nights of crying into the pillow are behind me and I will never again turn down chances to go on holiday, dates or nights out with my friends because of you!!  If you’re wondering whether there is someone else, I might as well confess now because you will find out from my friends soon enough.  Yes, there most certainly is someone else and you know what?  I just don’t care if that hurts you in your wallet!!  I didn’t plan for this to happen, I didn’t go looking for a replacement, it just kind of found me.  At first, I thought, don’t be silly, you don’t want to be vulnerable and end up getting hurt again but something inside me must have been ready for a change because I found myself being drawn in.  At this point, I realised that I didn’t have much to lose anyway (except weight that is) so I just went for it!  You know what, I don’t even care if you know your replacement’s name!  It’s The Anti-Diet Lifestyle, there now you know!!  Also, I am no longer hankering after you, I have time for myself, time for a life, I am happy and most of all, I am losing weight for good!!

In case there is any doubt, let me spell it out to you:

ITS OVER, I’M DONE!!!!

Yours no more

Ex-Dieter

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

WHAT IS THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE (and what it is not) FAQs

Since the Launch of our Facebook page in the beginning of 2016 and the subsequent publishing of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle last July, I have been asked several questions which I have been answering privately.  I feel that the time is right to make the questions and my answers available to the general public in the hope you will find them useful to you.

Before I list these, I thought it would be really useful if I took a little time to summarise what the Anti-Diet is NOT.  The reason for this is that from my research, I have come across a number of sites/groups etc that are pertaining to the belief that ‘life’s too short to waste time dieting and that you should love yourself exactly as you are’.  Whilst I fully believe this statement, I don’t agree with the philosophy that if you are overweight you should not worry about your health or quality of life.  I also do not believe that you should eat to your heart’s content and be really happy with the resulting body and the fact that it is life limiting.  There is nothing wrong with wanting to lose weight and when I set out on my journey that was exactly my goal.  I admit it, I wanted to be able to wear fashionable clothes, to feel body confident and be healthier and happier.

Believe me, I have tried the dieting route and it led me to experimenting with numerous ‘fad’ diets together with the usual starve/binge cycle routine which only made me gain weight.  The only reason for telling you this is so you understand that I have been through the worst of times and through research and trial and error, I happened to bump/stumble into what turned out for me to be the route to dieting freedom.   I lost weight, felt fitter and have managed to virtually effortlessly maintain the same slim body ever since.

Now, to tell you what the Anti-Diet Lifestyle IS –  It is a simple yet very effective formula that I developed along my path to dieting freedom, which if followed, will hopefully free you from dieting AND help you achieve your weight loss goals.  I am not saying it is easy or quick because quite frankly, it isn’t.  This is because, it goes against everything you have probably believed before about weight loss which means that you will most likely resist it strongly in the beginning.

I have divided the process into four steps which can be followed simultaneously or individually.  Using simple, clear language, I have explained exactly what I did to achieve my weight loss goal.  I know that just reading a book may not be enough for some people to effectively make the life changes they need to and because of this, I am writing a step by step, course which will guide you through the process.  Please follow me on Facebook for updates on when the course will be available for download.

Anyway, I hope I have given you a clear insight into The Anti-Diet Lifestyle and if you click on the link below, you will be able to download the FAQs ……..

The Anti-Diet FAQs download

Five things to do AFTER you have binged on food

Anyone who has ever been on a diet will be able to relate to this story in some way.  Even if the lead up is different, the end result is the same . . . .

Picture the scene, it’s a Saturday afternoon and you are feeling great.  The reason is  because you have a date tonight with a guy you’ve fancied for ages who finally asked you out.  You really want to wear your brand new dress that you bought especially for the occasion; a figure hugging ‘little black dress’ that makes you feel like a million dollars!  The only slight problem is that you’ve bought it in a size too small so you’ve needed to be extra strict on your diet to make sure it fits for the big night out.  To this end, you have virtually starved yourself all week.

Just as you are preparing to get ready, the phone rings and it’s the guy, the object of your dreams.  You hold your breath trying to contain the excitement that’s bubbling inside as you hear his smooth voice.  The exhilaration is short lived however as you realise he’s cancelling you at the last minute.  Your feelings plummet from 60 to zero and before you know it, you’re standing in front of the fridge.  What happens next is predictable; you comfort eat, feeding yourself every treat that you can lay your hands on until you are left feeling like a beached whale that’s physically sick.

So, where do you go from here?  What should you do in such a situation?  After years of personal experience with this dilemma, I have compiled a list of suggestions that I hope will help you turn the situation around (as they did for me):

  1. Watch an uplifting film – The key word here is ‘uplifting’ because a sad film will only push you further into the abyss of inadequacy and feelings of failure. I remember many times when I made the mistake of watching a downbeat film, relating to the forlorn character and as the film ended, the heaviness of my heart increased usually resulting with me reaching for another snack.
  2. Listen to inspirational music – I’ve used the word inspirational not necessarily in a spiritual way but as an umbrella word for any type of music that puts you in a good or at least better mood. It really doesn’t matter if it’s pop, hip hop, dance, rock, classical or anything as long as it leaves you feeling more hopeful and not hopeless.
  3. Read affirmations out loud – If you’re anything like I used to be, I would laugh at this suggestion but after reading about them in numerous articles, books, blogs etc, I decided to give them a try. I cannot stress how powerful positive affirmations can be and would really urge you to experiment with them.  A quick google search will equip you with literally hundreds you can try.
  4. Treat yourself – I’m not referring to an edible treat here! It could be a massage, a swim, a walk in the sunshine, talking to a friend etc!  Anything really that can provide you with comfort and or support.  At the very least it will give you a temporary distraction or at most strengthen your resolve to accept yourself exactly as you are at that very moment.  Doing this, will free you from the burden of negative feelings and allow you to continue with your life with gratitude and appreciation.
  5. Resume your normal routine – If you can only do one thing on this list, do this one! Oftentimes, after I had binged, I felt that the entire day or week was ruined and so I gave up on my diet and continued binging.  What I didn’t realise was that if I had stopped, even for an hour, my body would have had the chance to feel full and ‘recover’.

So, next time you find yourself in such a position, please refer to the list above.  Believe that all is not lost, because it really isn’t.  Feelings of self-loathing have a terrible habit of increasing after a binging episode, blowing the entire situation out of proportion.  Know this in advance so that the next time it strikes you are armed with the tools to pull you out of the depths of despair.  All is definitely NOT lost, you will be OK.

written by Sherry Taylor

Author of the Anti-Diet Lifestyle

How a toxic friend can make you fat

Have you ever wondered why when you are with a certain individual you always seem to feel bad about yourself?  On the face of it, they are attentive, available and make time for you, however whenever you leave their company your self-esteem seems to have taken a battering and you can’t quite work out why?  Well, I can tell you it’s no coincidence that certain people make you feel bad whilst others leave you feeling great.  I have years of experience in this field because I have had a collection of so-called friends that I finally recognized were no good for me.  This was through much trial and tribulation because at first, I refused to believe that they meant anything but the best for me.

Signs of a toxic friend

They encourage you to try on clothes you know will not fit you – whether you are in a shop choosing an outfit for an occasion or they bring over their own clothes for you to ‘borrow’ or whatever.  The bottom line is that they coax you with lies such as ‘you never know unless you try it’ or ‘I bet this will look great on you’ or other such like temptation.  It’s no surprise though that when you find that the said item/s look terrible or don’t fit, you end up feeling depressed.

They tempt you with foods you love when they are fully aware you are watching what you eat – they may do this subtly by having them lying around when you are in their company or totally blatantly by buying them for you.

They tell you something looks good on you even though another friend suggests you try on a larger size – They will pounce any time an opportunity arises to encourage you to wear or purchase a piece of clothing that clearly shows every bump and is unflattering for your figure but nevertheless tell you you look ‘amazing’ or ‘beautiful’ or other platitude.  You may even begin to believe them until another friend gently tells you to the contrary.

Whenever you leave their company, you head straight for the fridge – you just don’t know why but you feel the need to binge whenever you leave their company.  It could be that they’ve been tempting you with food or that they say a word here or a line there that ever so slightly puts you down.   They seem to be masters at sucking out your self-esteem and leaving you feeling empty and inadequate.

You always seem to break your diet when you are around them – You may be in a restaurant and feeling really pleased with yourself as you have just ordered a healthy and nutritious meal.  When it arrives however, this ‘friend’ surprises you by adding an extra portion of fries or treating you with a large helping of chocolate cake.  You find this irresistible and can’t help but eat the ‘offering’ that leaves you feeling guilty and fat all at once.

They buy you chocolates and cakes as presents knowing full well you will be tempted to eat the lot in one sitting – It’s your birthday and you’ve specifically asked for non-food gifts from your friends.  They are all aware that you are watching what you eat and happily omit any ‘guilty’ foods from their gift list.  This ‘friend’ however does the exact opposite by buying you the biggest box of your favourite chocolates and dismisses your refusal by saying ‘go on, you deserve a treat.  It’s your birthday!’

They encourage you to skip the gym and socialise with them instead – You’ve just joined the gym and have resolved to go at least once a week.  Instead of encouraging you, this ‘friend’ finds different ways to stop you from going.  You might have heard something along the lines of ‘Why don’t you come out with me tonight, the gym will still be there tomorrow’ or ‘but I’ve already booked the tickets, you could always go to the gym another time’ or ‘but it’s Friday, why don’t you relax, you deserve it after a whole week of work’.

They try and ‘hit’ on your boyfriend / girlfriend – They leave you feeling slightly uncomfortable around your partner.  They may be subtly flirtatious, dress more provocatively than usual, opt to sit close to them or other similar action.  It doesn’t matter what it is, the problem is that whatever they do makes you feel anxious.  This might mean you seeking solace in comfort eating to assuage these feelings.

They tell you to dress casually for an occasion then turn up dressed to the nines making you feel instantly self-conscious – Your ‘friend’ invites you to an event telling you ‘oh, it’s just a few of us going for a quiet drink so nothing fancy’ making you dress accordingly.  As you arrive, you realise with a heavy heart that everybody else is ‘dressed to kill’.  You spend the evening feeling unworthy and an outsider unable to enjoy yourself.

SO, as painful as it may be, you need to seriously consider expelling these people from your life, or if this is not possible, try and drastically reduce the time you spend with them.  They will not only hinder your weight loss progress, but they will also poison and sabotage your life at any opportunity.  Believe me, these people are NOT your friends.

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

What NOT to think when you look in the mirror

 

You may have woken up in a good mood, be in the company of good friends, have just got a promotion at work (or all three) but catching sight of your reflection in a shop window or a long mirror in the changing room immediately depresses you.  This is how powerful a negative self-image is, because in an instant any good feelings you might have been experiencing are replaced with self-loathing and depression.

Believe me, I know how that feels because I spent years trying to avoid catching sight of myself, particularly my body if I could possibly help it.  When with friends, I’d start comparing myself to others who were with me and that made the green-eyed monster appear on my shoulder.  If I’d found the courage to finally try on an outfit I loved, I’d cringe as I stared at my reflection in the mirror; on the model in the shop, it had looked sexy, fashionable, sophisticated but on me it transformed into a lumpy, frumpy sack of potatoes.  From that moment on, my day was ruined no matter how hard I tried to change it and the end result was almost always that I broke my diet to assuage feelings of inadequacy.

Over the years, I have learned what a futile exercise it is to hate yourself just because the lens you are choosing to see yourself with is clouded with an unfounded belief that you are not good enough.   I can already hear some of you say ‘it is founded, I am fat so my reflection is ugly, I am fat so I am inadequate, I am fat so I am imperfect’ etc., to which I will say that just because you feel you are overweight does NOT mean that you are any of these things.  The very core of these beliefs are false and I believe that they have been ingrained in us from the time we were born.  Just take a look around and you will notice it everywhere; in newspapers, magazines, televisions, movies and online articles we are constantly being bombarded with images of ‘perfect’ people.  If you are lucky enough to look like these photoshopped images then that’s great, but the majority of people don’t, and the premise is that beautiful is what is portrayed in the media!  What complete nonsense but we buy it, every ounce of it and we let it poison our beliefs about ourselves.

To undo some of the harm that has been inflicted on us, here are two things you need to STOP thinking whenever you catch sight of yourself:

I am fat

As soon as this thought enters your mind, make it a priority to dismiss it.  There is absolutely nothing positive or motivating about thinking this and all it will do is poison your sub-conscious mind with thoughts about how fat you are.  This will then affect every ounce of your self-esteem in a negative way.  From today, promise yourself that even if you feel fat, you will bravely look at your reflection and whisper (or shout!) ‘I love myself, I love myself, I love myself’.  Your sub-conscious is the very driving force of your life and it believes what it is told which is why saying these words to yourself will have a profoundly positive effect.

I am ugly

Another no-no, for thinking this sends negative, self-destructive signals to your brain which will affect you not only emotionally but physically as well.  Thoughts like ‘let me buy something, eat something that will make me feel good’ will creep up on you unannounced.  This then results in spending too much and eating too much – both activities that will only fuel the fire of self-doubt and inadequacy.  Again, you need to change tact when these feelings arise.  Be armed with a positive affirmation that will drown out the negativity like a cold shower puts out a fire.

What to think instead

Firstly, I know it’s easier said than done.  If you have been feeding your mind with negative self-talk for years, this habit will be hard to break but, with regular practice, you can overcome this behaviour pattern.  Accept that your first thoughts about yourself may be negative but mentally prepare to fight back when these phrases pop into your mind.  Try repeating, ‘I am beautiful’ over and over again or other similar phrases.  Make it a point to forever arm yourself with positive thoughts, even if you don’t yet believe them because eventually, you will begin to!

Realise, It may feel strange at first, but practice at home when you look in the mirror, say the words loudly and clearly over and over again every time you see yourself.  With regular, sustained practice you will gradually lessen the power that the negative words have over you and with time, you may actually stop believing them altogether!

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

3 Pitfalls of Dieting

The Anti-Diet Lifestyle

 

Most of the posts I see about dieting are, guess what, about dieting.  Not many (in fact I have yet to find any) articles are around that promote the exact opposite.  Our society is now so ingrained with the notion of dieting and weight loss that we have been blinded to other possibilities.  ‘Why has this happened?’ I hear you ask.  The answer is simple my friend, the answer is money, BIG money.  A quick search on Google and you will see that the dieting industry is a lucrative business with an estimated net worth in excess of $60 billion per year!!

I would like to try and balance the scales by informing you of some of the dieting pitfalls that no one seems to consider when beginning such a futile journey that is dieting (this list is by no means exhaustive):

Mental Health

If you are dieting because you want to resemble some of your thin friends or you’d like to fit in or you think that you will be more beautiful if only you lost weight, you are telling yourself in a very loud voice that you are not good enough.  This can only have a negative impact on your mental health.  Feelings of unworthiness and low self esteem are fuelled by any dieting set backs and you may end up in a vicious cycle of dieting, failure and the then inevitable increase in feelings of inadequacy.

Weight Gain

Let’s face it folks, most people that embark on diets end up failing.  Worse still they may actually gain weight as a result.  The term yo-yo dieting was coined particularly for this facet that is the common denominator of the majority of diets.

Drain on financial resources

Diets can be very expensive.  Some of the ‘programs’ are multi-million-dollar industries.  They require initial and on-going membership fees.  They lure you to buy their brand of foods, their monthly magazine subscription and other businesses advertise their wares on these sites.

Therefore . . .

Before you go on yet another diet, consider the above, look back on your past experiences and why not give The Anti-Diet Lifestyle a try?

Why the comparison game is a losing one!

Why the comparison game is a losing one!

 

Comparison – This is such a huge subject, where do I even start?! 

You walk down the street and come across an old friend from school.  At first your heart lifts at the sight and you look forward to talking to them after such a long time.  The excitement is short lived though as your friend proceeds to tell you about all the successes in her life, the great job, perfect partner and the fact that they’ve just put in an offer on a new house.  The green-eyed monster plunges its claws into your heart and pretty soon all you want to do is run away.  Your eyes notice how your friend is slim and well dressed and you feel her gaze on you reminding you of the fact that since the last time you’d seen each other, you’ve gained weight and are still in the same dead-end job – Sound familiar?!

So many of us that want to lose weight find ourselves caught in the lose-lose cycle that is the comparison game.  We seem to notice people all around us that are:

  • Better looking
  • Slimmer
  • Having great relationships
  • Successful in their careers
  • Able to eat what they like and not gain weight

The list is endless and the above is just the tip of the iceberg of the futile game we play when we choose to compare our lives to those of others.

I have fallen victim to playing this game many times and these are the painful lessons I have learned on my journey which I hope will help you stop playing the comparison game and start living your life with purpose:

  • Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose – This applies to everyone not just me. Realising this gave me a huge sense of relief because I had convinced myself that others were always getting things right and winning while I was left to face problem after problem in my life.

 

 

  • Some people will be better off than you and some won’t be – This was a hard pill to swallow because of course my initial reaction was to focus on everything I was lacking. However, I was determined to change this and began a daily habit of practicing gratitude.  I slowly began to appreciate what I had and not what I wanted.  This helped me to feel compassion for those worse off than me and grateful for what I had.

 

 

  • It is what I do for myself and my personal growth that matters – So true, but when we are locked in the comparison game, it’s easy to forget. The time I had spent consumed with jealousy had robbed me of time I could have passed being happy and relaxed.  I committed to using my energy better and pointed the torch of attention on my own life. This allowed me to turn the negativity of comparison to positivity and motivation to pursue and reach my own goals.

 

 

  • What others do, have or are is not my business – Realising this allowed me to stop focusing on others and return my attention to my own life.

 

 

  • No one, I mean, no one is perfect – I have come across countless situations where what I thought was an ideal life was in fact just a sugar coating on a painful and fearful existence.  Relationships that seemed romantic and idyllic ended, people lost their perfect jobs, those that appeared to eat anything they wanted and not gain weight had food disorders and lives I yearned for, experienced ill health and depression.  It is better to offer compassion and understanding for others than resentment and envy.

 

  • What I see of other people’s life is the image they wish to project, their highlight reel – I will never know the reality so why waste my time being consumed with jealousy about what I can see?

 

 

  • Time spent comparing myself to others is wasted as it could have been spent on me and my goals – This is a massive deal! If you play the comparison game, you will find that your mood becomes darker, your body releases stress hormones putting you in fight or flight mode and any enthusiasm you may have felt earlier will leave.  You are literally snatching your chances of happiness and success away from yourself!  Instead, when you feel the heat of jealously creep up on you, mindfully tell it to take a hike by focusing on your own life.

 

  • The people I am comparing myself to and feeling jealous about could actually be jealous of me! They may have problems that they are fighting to overcome that I know nothing about.

 

I truly hope the lessons I have learned will help you take back the reins of your life and steer it towards the success that you are seeking!

 

I will leave you with a poem that sums it up!

 

The Comparison Game

(89 Ways to Soothe Your Soul, Sherry Taylor)

 

The comparison game

Can never be fun.

For no matter what,

It cannot be won!

 

Someone will be better,

And someone worse.

Constant comparing,

Is just like a curse.

 

You’ll miss the light,

Be stuck in the shade.

As comparison to others,

Should never be made.

 

It will keep you stuck,

Push your goals out of sight.

Jealously will consume you,

As you lie awake at night.

 

The comparison game,

Will waste your time you see.

As your energy and focus,

Is not used wisely.

 

Just work on yourself,

Keep comparison at bay.

Compete to be better,

Then you were yesterday.

 

With peace in your heart,

Let self-love cascade.

Know we’re all unique,

Not ready made!

 

If you enjoyed this poem, download the book from

 

 

 

The amazing fact about your taste buds that will help you enjoy eating healthier food!

I used to really hate fruits, vegetables and any ‘healthy’ food to be honest.  They all just tasted so bland and left me feeling as if I hadn’t had a proper meal or snack; that I had missed out.  That left me feeling cheated and only made me crave all the sugary, fatty and salty foods that I just loved so much because they tasted absolutely amazing.  I only had to think of my favourite chocolate bar, takeaway or cake and my mouth would start to water.  Just the first bite had me captivated and the sole object of my affection became whatever I was eating (devouring) in that moment.  Of course, one cake was never enough, I always wanted another; whilst a massive, fatty takeaway would fill me eventually, I still tried to stuff in some ice cream or a cake afterwards.  In short, I was in heaven because these foods had my taste buds crying out for more and the pleasure centres in my brain were letting off fireworks, making me feel like I was on top of the world!  Obviously, after I had eaten, I would experience feelings of fear, panic and guilt at the prospect of the weight that I would put; my initial energy peak fell sharply making me feel drowsy and sluggish and my motivation hit rock bottom.  The crazy thing about it all though was that none of the fear, dread and likely weight gain was ever enough to stop me going for another ‘fix’ sometimes on the same day even!

 

At that time, I was overweight and unhappy.  The weight loss I dreamed of so that I could wear anything I wanted seemed unattainable and I’d be so jealous of people who seemed to be able to eat whatever they wanted and not put on an ounce.  ‘If only healthier food tasted better’, I used to think because then it would be so much easier to stomach!  My desperation to be slim gave me just enough energy to not give up on myself and to research ways in which I could try and incorporate better foods into my diet without feeling so left out.  I was elated when there were weeks that I managed to force myself to have my five a day portions of fruit and vegetables; make as many better choices.  This never lasted for too long and, as everyone knows, the rollercoaster must go up as well as down and so predictably, I would give in and have the foods that smelt amazing, tasted wonderful and warmed my soul to the very core!  I truly did not believe that it would be possible for me to ever contemplate having to give any of these up much less voluntarily not eat them so much.

Even though I could clearly see that my love of sweet, salty and fatty foods was making me gain weight, have no energy or enthusiasm towards life, I felt powerless to change because the alternative, living a life full of bland, dull food was too horrible to tolerate.  By this time, I had given up on dieting and, unbeknown to me, was well on the road to recovery.  I had stopped weighing myself and given up the constant monitoring, restrictions and denial that dieting requires.   I had just hit a road block on my journey but was unaware of it.  This time it was different because the ‘old’ me would have just given up but this ‘new’ diet-free me had a determination that was fueled by the extra head space I had that dieting used to occupy.  I was in the middle of my Anti-Diet journey and I began to believe gave that maybe, just maybe I could break this addiction.  Once I had committed to finding a way, I became determined in my quest.  This time I:

  • Did not give up even though fruit and veg tasted so bland
  • Made a commitment to myself to eat at least one portion of fruit and veg a day (I can’t say I kept my promise every day each time I fell, I got back up)
  • Gradually built up from one portion a day to two and then three and so on until I stopped counting
  • Still ate sugary, high fat foods but found that my cravings were miraculously reducing as I persisted and this meant that I found myself naturally having less of these types of foods
  • If I didn’t like one fruit, I would move on to something else
  • If I didn’t like one type of vegetable, I vowed to try another
  • The less sugary, salty and fatty foods I ate, the less I craved them

 

What I didn’t realise was the surprising and very welcome outcome that came with this persistence and determination to nourish my body and that was:

 

  • Fruit began to taste amazing – Once I started to eat them regularly and mindfully, I slowly began to truly taste them and appreciate their very unique and delicious textures and tastes.
  • Vegetables tasted great – Including them in my meals not only made them healthier for me but they were delicious and helped me to feel fuller for longer.
  • My health improved and I lost weight
  • I no longer felt so demotivated and sluggish because I had more energy than I used to
  • I felt more in control of my life because the tight hold that food had on me began to loosen and I felt freer than I had in ages.
  • I stopped feeling guilty because I began to enjoy healthier options voluntarily and without pressure.

I was totally amazed and wanted to find out why this was because in the past, I had never felt like this.  My research was eye opening and it was great to have answers that I could relate to and gave me an explanation as to what happened.  What I found was:

 

Sugary foods can dampen the sensitivity of your taste buds making other foods appear tasteless

Salty foods can desensitise your taste buds which can make you feel like other foods are bland

High fat foods can dull your taste buds making you compensate by eating more food

 

It all now made sense!  The reason that I didn’t find fruit, vegetables and other healthier foods appetising was not because they were bland but because my taste buds needed to reset.  I had stumbled upon this jewel accidentally through my commitment to be healthier and on the other side of this commitment I found how amazingly delicious these foods were!

 

So, if you are like I used to be, if you hate fruit, if you find vegetables pointless BUT you would like to be healthier – Make the commitment to change and follow through with it.  Know that if you persist, you will get to a place where you will be healthier and enjoy your food.  It really is a win-win!  Not only that, you will feel fuller and more satisfied as the fiber in fruit and veg fill us up for longer.

 

WRITTEN BY SHERRY TAYLOR

AUTHOR OF THE ANTI-DIET LIFESTYLE – 4 CRAZY STEPS TO WEIGHT LOSS SUCCESS!

 

 

 

 

 

Why Making the most of it will stop you losing weight!

 

In my dieting days, I was either trying to diet OR I was making the most of NOT dieting!  There just wasn’t any in-between for me because I had convinced myself that the ‘middle’ was not even an option.  I mean why on earth would I want to eat just over my calorie/syn or points allowance when I could give in and have everything I desired as well?  There was no fun in the middle whatsoever because if I had one thing over what I was supposed to and then went back to the counting and monitoring I would have broken my diet and not even enjoyed it.  It just wasn’t worth it.

When I look back, I can see the error of my ways and am shocked that my thinking was so very warped.  The reason was that I was well and truly diet blind as I like to call it.  What that means is that once your mindset is diet focused, you are unable to see any other way that you could possibly lose weight.  Because of that, you will be in a constant state of obsessing or thinking about what you have already eaten, are about to eat or will be eating!  I remember that I used to think about my next meal or snack all day long and the only time I had any respite from it all was when I was actually eating.  Added to that was the fact that I could not freely enjoy what I truly wanted to eat (crisps, cakes, pies, chocolate etc) and so was left feeling guilty if I did AND I always felt cheated of fun when I forced myself to eat what I did not want (fruit, vegetables, wholegrains, oats etc).

So anytime I lost control and ate something I shouldn’t or a larger meal or snack than planned, I would go all the way and made the most of it by eating anything and everything I fancied!  My initial intention was always to break my diet for that one day and then be back on it the next BUT it rarely panned out like that.  In reality, this spell of fast and desperate eating could last anything from one day, to weeks or even months!  When dieting again, I did lose weight, but year on year, I normally weighed more than the one before.

If this story rings true with you, please know that this is a very normal reaction for many dieters and we have even bought into it as a collective that on special occasions such as birthdays, Christmases, weddings etch, overeating is ‘legalised’ and encouraged on the grounds of reasonable excuse!  Please also know however that you should commit to start ‘making the least of it’ because:

  • You end up feeling worse once you eat past the point of hunger alone which can leave you feeling hopeless and depressed. As all of us comfort eaters know, these feelings lead us to seek comfort in our arch nemesis and BFF – Food!  Therefore, after we have overindulged, we want to seek solace in food meaning we eat even more!
  • You will end up putting on weight – no surprises here but I had to mention it.
  • You keep yourself stuck in the restriction, denial /excess cycle that supports and nurtures a bad relationship with food. This keeps you locked in a no-win situation as you must heal your relationship with food if you are to enjoy long-term weight loss.
  • After the point of feeling stuffed, you will cease to enjoy what you are eating as you are trying to make the most of it. This means that you continue to cause damage to your physical health long after you are full.
  • Your mental health suffers as you make pacts with yourself about how you will be stricter on yourself from tomorrow. This causes the brain to panic as it believes a famine is imminent.  Therefore, as an ancient survival technique, it multiplies your hunger, forcing you to eat.

 

There are many other dangers of this habit but I think the above illustrates the points that are the most important.  You do not have to be a rocket scientist to realise therefore that this is completely the wrong thing to do when you have eaten just a bit too much or indulged in something you believe you should not have.  Much better and healthier approaches that will also lead you to weight loss are:

 

  • Make sure that you totally enjoy what you are indulging in without any guilt whatsoever. Our brains are wired to desire more of that which we cannot have and therefore removing guilt ensures that your craving does not trigger the intense desire to carry on with the indulgence for the rest of the day.
  • Eat what you desire mindfully. In simple terms what this means is that you should eat using all of your five senses; touch the food, noticing its texture, smell the food, noticing what It’s like, hear the food by listening to it crunch, or crack etc, see the food, noticing it’s colour, shape, size etc and finally taste the food, noticing and identifying as many ingredients that you possibly can.  This will let you engage fully with what you desire and also allow you to fully appreciate it.  Doing this has two benefits, 1, you are able to enjoy it more 2, you are able to remember eating it better.  So many times, when we indulge, we scoff food in a fast and frenzied fashion leaving us wanting more because we didn’t really give ourselves the opportunity to enjoy it.
  • Eat it slowly, really slowly. Commit to chewing everything at least 15 times to let yourself fully enjoy every mouthful and also to allow sufficient time for your stomach to be able to read the full signal sent by the brain.
  • Wait 20 minutes – This is a very powerful way to reduce the amount of food you need to feel satisfied as it is in the midst of panic that we eat without any attention or care to whether we are still hungry or if our desire has been met. Leaving a 20-minute gap before you decide to indulge again will let your mind can catch up with your body allowing you to make better decisions based on clarity and not desperation.

I hope that the above helps you as much as it helped me.  Remember, you do not have to eat perfectly to lose weight, an indulgence here and there will not stand in your way.  Set your intentions daily to use these techniques armed with the knowledge that you do not have to eat everything that you desire at once because tomorrow is another day.

 

Happy Anti-Dieting!

 

Written by Sherry Taylor

Author of The Anti-Diet Lifestyle, 4 Crazy Steps to Weight Loss Success!