Semantics are important. The words we choose hold a great deal of meaning, whether we realize it or not. So I’d like to give you something to ponder during this holiday season. As you spend time with family and friends you may want to consider a few of the following tips. My hope is that they will keep you focused on the reason for the celebrating without the distractions of excessive concerns with weight, food, and body talk.
Try greeting your loved one with “it’s so great to see you!” rather than “you look so good!” A comment on appearance might seem benign but in many cases it isn’t. For example, if you have a family member whose weight tends to cycle, a comment when their weight is low may put a lot of stress, pressure, and anxiety for future visits when their weight may be higher. The goal is for family and friends to feel love and acceptance for WHO they are, not WHAT they look like.
“Oh, I’m being so bad right now” is a comment that many of us have heard or even spoken. Comments about fat, calories, and “being bad” are nothing but an unhelpful distraction. And quite frankly, it’s obnoxious and may put a damper on the meal for others. Ironically, keeping the focus on enjoying the meal, tasting your food, and listening to your body’s hunger and fullness will improve your mental, physical, and emotional health. And you won’t annoy your loved ones, which is a huge bonus.
Keep your diet and weight loss goals for the New Year to yourself. Seriously, a holiday party isn’t the time for it. Enough said?
I hope you find these holiday tips useful. Do you have any conversation tips you’d like add to the list? If yes, please comment!