I probably sound like a broken record when I say this, but letting go of dieting has truly changed my life. This single shift in my health journey has also ended up causing shifts in every other area of my life. Let’s talk about it.
It started with dropping the diet
You see, getting off of the diet roller coaster has given me so much. I have found more food freedom, body confidence, and self-awareness than I ever dreamed possible. Embracing intuitive eating means that for the first time in my adult life, I am fully allowed to eat what I want. I get to eat when I want. I can eat in whatever quantities I want! Even better? I get to do it free from judgment, guilt, and shame. Gone are the days of feeling bad about myself for my inability to stay “on track.” No more shame over eating a normal brownie when I could have had a “dieted down” one.
The IE lifestyle isn’t without its challenges and learning curves. There is a major focus on 10 principles that I have set out to embrace as I let go of dieting for good. I have to let go of diet culture, I need to learn to respect my hunger and fullness, and so much more. Just to be very clear, I am by no means perfect at any of it yet, but I do feel I have my feet firmly planted in this space and I have experienced major growth over the last 6 months. As expected, my relationship with food, diet culture, exercise, and my body has begun to change.
I found a new flow
What I didn’t expect was to see a similar positive shift in all non-health areas of my life as well. All of a sudden, my goal-setting is happening with grace and flexibility rather than unrealistic expectations. When it comes to the day’s tasks or my goals for the week, I make a list, yes, but I no longer feel paralyzed by it. All of a sudden I have more permission to take breaks and work less on days I don’t feel like it, and in turn, I end up with days where my energy is high and I sometimes crank out 3 days worth of tasks in a single day.
I finally let go of early wake-up times. Spoiler alert: I get more done by letting myself get the right amount of sleep.
I’ve started taking more action instead of procrastinating, simply because I feel like I can.
I have already met my reading goal for the month, and I am on track to read 2 books more than my desired count before the month is over.
This might be TMI, but I am on day 1 of Aunt Flo’s visit, and rather than feeling depleted and unable to function, I am sitting at the computer writing a freaking blog post because I feel like it and I am energized enough to show up. Who am I??
I feel like my life in general is flowing with greater ease, energy, and joy. Much like I am embracing all that comes with food freedom, I am also finding time freedom, task freedom, and expectation freedom. I wake up feeling motivated. I wake up feeling energized. I wake up in the headspace needed to get my stuff done.
Embracing intuitive eating is giving me a chance to assess the rest of my life. How often did I use my diet-culture-like beliefs to set expectations in other areas of my life? My guess is too many.
Introducing: Intuitive Brianna
There is freedom to be found in a more intuitive lifestyle. I am still trying to understand what all of these changes mean in a way I can fully put into words, but here is what I know for sure:
The new way of life is “Intuitive Brianna.” It’s me quitting the comparison game and playing a game where I’m the only player. The best part? That means I make the rules. From what and when to eat to what boundaries I set, it’s all me. I am letting go of society’s expectations on what the best morning routine is to what foods are giving us cancer this week. Intuitive Brianna means I decide and no one else.
How do I spend my energy today? What are today’s priorities? Do I sleep a little longer or does my energy allow for an early morning? All of this and more gets treated the same way my new relationship with food is treated.
Sure, some guidelines remind me that it’s probably a good idea to eat protein, fiber, and produce. Yes, I know I need to hydrate. Moving my body on the daily in some way is healthy. This new flow is taking those guidelines and using them as elements of how to approach my health.
The same now goes in my day to day. Yes, if I have an appointment or a deadline, I need to keep it. No, I can’t stay up at all hours of the night and mess up my thriving sleep cycles just because I want to. Yes, I do have to cook food today, or we won’t have nourishing meals. That might sound like nothing is different, but trust me when I say the flow of life is totally different. Now everything feels easier. Everything feels free.
I feel big things coming all because I feel ready for them.
and to think it all began with letting go of dieting…