When Old Habits Fight Back
Updated: Jan 4
Remember in a previous post I had mentioned that I am creating new, positive pathways in my brain? That it takes practice and time and it's OK if a moment happens where I revert back to an old habit.
That old habit came back today.
It happens when junk food is in the house, especially if it's dessert like candy, ice cream or cookies and cake. I had trained my brain to mark these foods as 'bad' and trigger foods. I had tried and tried again to avoid these foods at all costs AKA removing them from the house and never allowing them back again. I had also scolded people for bringing them to work or back into the house. How could they do that to me when I'm trying to lose weight and not binge a full sleeve of Oreos?
I attempted at baking s'mores cookies again over the weekend. Let me tell you a couple of things:
1) Be sure to check the date on flour because if it's more than 2 years old, chances are it's going to taste weird... Maybe like the pantry it's been sitting in... UGH
2) At the start of the year I told myself I wanted to bake more. Since the beginning of quarantine, I have baked a few items and these were probably the worse of them all. That's okay though because I am happy that I am following through with something I've been wanting to do. :)
I'm still debating whether or not to really throw out every single cookie because they really aren't all that satisfying. It took time and energy to bake them and I hate wasting food. Which brings me to when an old habit came back today without me realizing it until it was too late.
I did so great yesterday telling myself after dinner that "I do NOT want a cookie or ice cream tonight. I'm done for the day. I do NOT want any more sweets."
I succeeded. I was so proud of myself.
Today, this morning, I walked into my kitchen and the cookies were there on the counter in a sandwich bag.
"I really don't want a cookie right now. I want a nice, hearty, healthy breakfast and no cookie."
Awesome! I did it again. I can do this.
Then came lunch time. I had two pieces of cauliflower cheese pizza and the rest of my chopped salad from yesterday. Without even pausing, I put the dishes away, grabbed a glass of milk and devoured 4 decently sized cookies.
The cookies are gone. They are out of the house. I don't have to feel challenged by them as I sit in the living room watching tv or elsewhere in the house. The cookies are gone.
Ugh... So what am I going to do now?
Am I going to continue this old habit by feeling guilty that I ate those cookies? Nope.
Am I going to say mean things to myself like I did in the past when I thought that was the only way to get my 'new habit' to stick? Nope.
Am I going to move on and focus on how long those cookies actually survived in my kitchen until this point? Yes! Those cookies survived a couple of days in my kitchen and I managed to delay gratification multiple times where as in the past delaying gratification was almost nonexistent.
While I am slightly disappointed, I'm moving on, focusing on the positive and sharing my experience with you. Creating new, healthy habit pathways in your brain is hard. It's not easy. It takes time and practice and patience. This is something that I will continue to practice until I can live with cookies in the house and not be phased by them and only have 1 or 2 when I absolutely want to.
Do you struggle with having certain foods in the house? How do you deal with situations like this one? Share with me in the comments section :)