No matter how grounded you may feel in your recovery journey, the holiday season can add stress and anxiety surrounding family dynamics and the abundance of foods. Now is the time to make a recovery plan for the holidays, starting with Thanksgiving. This is an important time to remind yourself of how far you have come in your journey. No positive change you have made in either thought patterns or food-related behaviors is too small. Every tiny step you have made towards full recovery is significant, and each one builds on the next to create a solid foundation of recovery that can hold you up when you face tough challenges ahead. Recognize that you are NOT the same person you were yesterday, last week, even last month – you are stronger, because you have not given up; you are wiser, because you have learned something about yourself with every step forward or backward. And you bring this stronger, wiser ‘you’ into this upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.
Now is the time to think ahead about what challenges the day will hold for you – is it dealing with a certain family member that causes tension? Is it having to decide how to choose between all the traditional food favorites? Determine what YOU need for extra support, such as specific time limits around the meal itself, or a select seat at the table surrounded by those with whom you are most comfortable. Remind yourself that eating more during a holiday meal is normal, and staying as close to your normal meal and snack schedule throughout the entire day helps keep your body in tune with its own hunger and fullness signals – working for you, not against you.
For more in-depth discussion on maintaining your recovery during the holidays, join Alsana’s Live Facebook Discussion, Staying in Recovery During the Holidays, with Chelsea Martin, RD and Travis Stewart, LPC on Friday, November 18, 2016. https://www.facebook.com/Alsanatc/