by Ella Walker Henderson, M.A., LPC, CEDS
The holidays can be a wonderful season, filled with joy and family and fun. Yet, the busyness can get to us all. Add in a struggle with food and weight, and it can be one of the hardest times of the year.
There are ways that YOU can be a huge support through modeling and encouragement to those around you:
- Try navigating the conversation away from criticism. Sure, a comment here and there can seem harmless, but criticism of yourself and others can be a part of creating a negative atmosphere.
- Especially stay away from body criticism! Model body acceptance or positivity by refraining from making negative comments.
- Enjoy holiday food as both fun and nourishment. Food is celebratory! Enjoy it with one another (without having to talk about it being “bad” for you).
- Be aware of how you’re fueling your body – you have the freedom to enjoy another Christmas cookie, but if you don’t get some protein in you soon, will it feel so good?
- Practice gratitude: It’s hard for stress and negativity to creep in if you are focused on being grateful! Sure, it’s hard to do this all the time, but I bet the more you focus on it, the more you’ll feel it.
- Please don’t use exercise as punishment for food you ate. Enjoy it as the gift it is – your body has the ability to move!
- Please also refrain from talking about having to buckle down or lose weight once the holidays are over. Focus on taking care of yourself instead!
If you have any questions about any of these recommendations, please comment or reach out to us! We’d love to talk further about any of these ideas!
Ella Walker Henderson, M.A., LPC, CEDS serves both as Founder of Living Bread and as a counselor. She is trained in the treatment of eating disorders, as well as in the integration of Christian faith and prayer into counseling sessions. She received her B.A. from Furman University in Psychology, and her M.A. in Professional Counseling from Richmont Graduate University in Atlanta, GA.