Gretel Hallet, is a trained Chocolate Fairy and is running the Getting Started half day workshop in Norwich. If you live in East Anglia and want to know more about Beyond Chocolate, get in touch with Gretel.
As I’ve said before on this blog, diet clubs have sprung up like low-fat, low-calorie mushrooms all round the town where I live. Their cheerful notices feature a slim woman crouching by a set of weighing scales and give details of the nearest club to the notice. One of the reasons I suspect that these diet clubs are so popular is because they offer dieters a chance to be in a room with other people in the same boat. And we like being with other people who speak the same language as us, understand the issues we are facing, sympathise with our failures and celebrate our successes – they understand.
From what I gather from women who attend these groups, they go mostly for the support, not necessarily for the products or the weighing in etc. I have even met women who carry on going to the classes even if they’re not actively dieting, because they enjoy the support and company of women who speak their language – and, as I’m sure you all know, the language of dieting is very pervasive among women.
Beyond Chocolate Principle Number 9 is ‘Support Yourself’. Right at the end of the list, along with ‘Be Your Own Guru’, these principles can be overlooked by ex-dieters keen to get to grips with formerly forbidden foods and developing their own self-awareness. But these principles are just as important as the earlier, more ‘sexy’ ones.
If we attempt to work with the Beyond Chocolate principles without input from other like-minded women, we run the risk of becoming isolated, feeling hopeless and eventually giving up and re-enrolling in our former diet class with our former diet buddies (they’ll all still be there!).
We are social animals, we humans; we need the company of others and particularly those who are walking the same way as us. Swimming against the tide is for salmon! Being a Beyond Chocolater can be a lonely thing; we are still comparatively rare – so when there is a chance of meeting up with others, we should seize it with both hands.
Spending time with other Beyond Chocolaters is a wonderfully reviving experience – even spending half an hour a day on the Forum can re-vitalise us and, perhaps, nudge us gently back on track if we’ve been veering off into a cul-de-sac of diet-ridden despair.
Even if we’ve been working with Beyond Chocolate for some time, it’s still vitally important to seek that validation and support from other women, particularly from those who are just setting out – they can have some startlingly valuable insights into things we may have forgotten about.
Being with other Beyond Chocolaters is one of the best ways to ‘Support’ ourselves – so I would encourage you all to look at the list of courses available across the country and see if you can get to one of them – you certainly won’t regret it. If there isn't a course near you, take a look at our membership which gives you access to the forum and monthly phone-ins.
Above all, support yourself – it’s harder to do anything alone.
How do you support yourself?
How do you support yourself?