We had a great Masterclass last night in which we spoke all about post Christmas diets and how to avoid the the lure of the January detox season.
We didn't really talk about the fact that the diets don't work - folks who take part in the monthly telephone Masterclass already know this so there's no point in preaching to the converted! No, what we talked about this month was ideas on how to deal with being on the receiving end of an advertising onslaught and a general diet frenzy occurring in just about every home, office, school and gym across the country.
The diet companies have already snapped up as many magazine pages and Google Ads as they can fit in their budgets to promote their post Christmas and January diets and it's unlikely you'll be able to venture outside or online without being submitted to a multi- pronged attack. Think we are exaggerating? We did a little test. Let's say you want to nosey around the internet for some post Christmas sale bargains. When we typed in the words "post Christmas..." the first things that Google suggested was "post Christmas diets" along with a page full of enticing offers from the likes of My Special K diet and Tesco's 'My Little Black Dress Diet' (yes, really).
It can be really hard to hold on to the knowledge that going on a diet in January is fruitless when everyone around you is attempting one and every billboard, web page, TV channel and magazine cover is urging you to join them with false promises of miraculous, easy and rapid weight loss. Even the most hard core Beyond Chocolater may find it challenging to ignore the dieting exhortations.
So, here's some Beyond Chocolate ammunition to defend yourself.
1. Support Yourself
- Make sure you balance the diet messages with non diet messages… If you are a member of the forum - spend time there. This supportive and welcoming space is guaranteed to be diet free. If you're not on the forum, become a member now - the first month is free so you won't be paying anything 'till January...and there are worse things to spend £7.99 on, we promise.
- Speak to like minded people - they don't have to be Beyond Chocolaters. The important thing is that, for whatever reason, they're not interested in talking about diets, detoxes and weight loss. Find at least one person in the office, at the school gate, amongst your friends who you can talk to when everyone else is talking about diets.
- Find things to read that support your decision - buy a book from the Beyond Chocolate bookshop and have it around to dip into. If you're into magazines, buy one that doesn't talk about weight loss - whether it's food, travel, gardening or tech gadgets… anything that isn’t about weight loss! Find other blogs and websites that talk about not dieting (if you find good ones, tell us about them).
2. Be your own Guru
- Come up with your own advertising 'no diet' campaign. What's your slogan? Where in your home or office are you going to put it so you can see it all the time? Whether you stick a post it on the bathroom mirror or create a screen saver for laptop or mobile, the idea is to counter the effects of the 'other' campaign going on all around you. This slogan will also be good ammunition to use as a standard response to people who either want to talk you into dieting or want to talk about weight loss and diets…
- Beware, the 'enemy' is also on the inside! What is your Gremlin telling you about going on a diet, new year’s resolutions, Beyond Chocolate not working, how much weight you’ve put on or not lost? Remind yourself about your previous experiences of going on a diet in January. How many times have you attempted it? How long did you stick to it? When did you give up? Did you lose any weight? How quickly did you put it back on?
- Maybe your Gremlin is taking another tack (it knows you won't listen to the diet drivel), and is suggesting ‘DOING Beyond Chocolate properly' as your new year's resolution. If this is the case, it's likely that you have been experimenting with the principles for a bit. Look back and appreciate yourself for what's worked, for the changes you have made and reflect on what you would like to work more on. Choose one or two things and set yourself a few actions, or maybe just one for tomorrow. Look at the thread called "Just one thing..." on the forum for ideas and inspiration.
However you choose to protect yourself from the frenzy, remember to check in with the Chocolate Fairies: on this blog, on Twitter and on Facebook. We'll be right here with words of wisdom and sanity. Eating chocolate and looking forward to 2011...without a diet in sight.