Do you know how to stop? January 15, 2019

Chocolate - it's my thing. For some people it's burgers, soda, or sweets - but for me it has always been chocolate.

I used to think I had an 'all or nothing' mentality - meaning if I ate a tiny bit of chocolate I wasn't stopping. I got that taste and that was it .. it was as if something else took over my usual rational mind and I couldn't stop.

Take English Chocolate parents always bring me a bunch of it over because it is my absolute favourite (and because sorry Aussies but your chocolate SUCKS). And I would pretty much demolish the whole lot as soon as I could - usually over Christmas because that's when I had given myself 'free reign' to eat what I liked and of course the calories don't count then right!?

I just had to get it eaten so it was out of sight and done with, I couldn't imagine leaving it in the fridge for weeks on end without touching it...I mean who does that?! But inevitably that meant I never really enjoyed it because I constantly had a sense of unease and anxiousness around it being in the house, not having control and having to eat it to get it out the way.

Fast forward to today and I still have 4 bars of UK chocolate that mum and dad got me back in November. I haven't felt the need to binge and it hasn't been playing on my mind every second I am at home that its in that fridge just calling my name waiting to be eaten.

In fact I can take it or leave it, and when I do eat it I can have a small amount and then stop. It's a game changer - and that's because I no longer view chocolate as something 'bad', something which I can't have, or something which is suddenly not going to be available to me anymore.

I let myself have it whenever I want (and most nights I do), BUT I carefully plan (and make sacrifices) for my food that day to accomodate for it. I stick within guidelines of what my macros are so I can eat it and still hit my goals. I give myself a limit and I stick to it. I won't lie and say while I am eating it I still don't have thoughts of 'I'll just have a little bit more' because I do, but I never act upon them. Instead I tell myself "This time tomorrow if you can have more, it's still going to be there in the fridge for you nothing is going to take it away" - and within half an hour I am usually satisfied and the craving for more has passed.

I know I am an extremely strong willed individual and don't think twice about making sacrifices where needed, but I didn't always used to be this way and that was simply through approaching my mindset around food and it's availability the wrong way.

I have personally found this approach of having my favourite food around me all the time and giving myself the option of having it whenever I want to work for me.

It might not for everyone, but the more you tell yourself you 'can't' have something the more you will want it. The more you try and remove it from your life and tell yourself it's bad for you the more you will crave it. Instead of trying to cover up the issue by removing it out of sight, how about you spend time figuring out why it triggers you and what you can work on to stop living this way. Take the control back, let yourself enjoy the little things in life and when you do have whatever your 'nemesis' food is - you will truly enjoy it a whole lot more.

Happy Eating!