Losing Weight Doesn’t Have to Be Your New Year’s Resolution

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Last year at this time, I wrote the Instagram post below. I’m re-sharing it because I need to hear this message again and you might too.

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“I’ve been wanting to share a New Year’s post because this is a time of year when guilt around food is intense. It’s that time of year when we are bombarded with EVEN MORE messages about weight loss, the “perfect” diet (Keto, Whole30, Paleo, Gluten-free, etc., etc.). It’s that time of year when we promise ourselves we’ll be “perfect” in the New Year (and we often binge on foods until the clock strikes midnight on 12/31; then are miserable as we restrict carbs, sugar, dairy, meat, alcohol, gluten, or whatever food group you choose for a week or two; then we “break down” and eat whatever we said we shouldn’t; then we feel guilty and the cycle starts over again).

I’ve wanted to write a post about this time of year but to be honest, I couldn’t really figure out what to say. I wish I could say this time of year doesn’t make me anxious or doesn’t make me want to “start over” and eat/exercise “perfectly” on Jan. 1 (even know I know that doesn’t work). But those feelings are still in me. What I can say, though, is that I know I want to FIGHT those feelings. Today, I’m able to recognize that it’s more comfortable to fall into the diet-culture New Year’s vortex, but that I’m choosing to do the hard work to resist it. I’m learning that every time I choose to follow a negative self-thought (that easily pops into my head) with a kind thought, I AM making progress.

So, what I am saying is I can’t sit here on an Instagram soap box and give you the best advice in the world. But I can share three posts from others that have helped ease my anxiety and I hope they ease yours. Wishing you peace and body neutrality in the new year.”

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This year, I’m sharing the three posts I mentioned above along with some more I’ve found (be sure to read their captions; there’s good stuff in there). I’ve realized that to change my inner dialogue, I have to learn a NEW vocabulary. Recognizing negative self talk is a great first step. But to continue to make progress, I need something to replace that negative talk with. The authors of the following posts are giving me the words when I can’t figure out what to say to myself. These words help ease my New Year’s resolution anxiety, and I hope they ease yours too.

View this post on Instagram

This quote from the lovely Meaghan Markle has really stuck with me: “I resolve not to have any resolutions…. the only thing I aim to do is to approach life playfully. To laugh and enjoy, to keep my standards high but my level of self-acceptance higher. My New Years resolution is to leave room for magic. To make my plans, and be okay if they sometimes break. To set my goals, but to be open to change. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ And I'd say this goal worked out well for Meaghan! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ .⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Every single day, I'm working to improve myself – whether that's accepting the softness of my stomach or trying to use my phone less. But that doesn't mean there's something wrong with me. I don't need fixing. And nor do you. Because, as the very wise and wonderful Sophia Bush once said: "You are allowed to be both a masterpiece and work in progress simultaneously". ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ You can accept and love yourself in your current state, while still working to become the best version of yourself. In fact, you're actually even MORE likely to stick to your goals when you're doing it from this place of love, rather than fear. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Whatever you're thinking for a new years resolution – if that's your jam – make it kind. You deserve kindness.

A post shared by LYNDI COHEN // Nutritionist (@nude_nutritionist) on

Be sure to scroll through this post. My favorite post is the third one.

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