Gretel Hallet, is a Trained Chocolate Fairy and is running the Getting Started half day workshop in Norwich - perfect for beginners to experience the core principles of Beyond Chocolate and equally great as a refresher for any Beyond Chocolater. If you live in East Anglia and want to know more about Beyond Chocolate or her workshops, get in touch with Gretel.
Ok, so maybe it’s not a mistake, but it may well be a delusion. Imagine someone who had been a fervent believer in a religion for many years, suddenly deciding they didn’t believe any more, but they carry on with all their religious observances, just in case. A ‘saved’ dieter who continues dieting while starting to work with the Beyond Chocolate principles, is someone who is hedging their bets and will possibly end up not ‘doing’ either ‘properly’.
I can see the attraction, though. It may be that someone has been dieting for many many years. Dieting is familiar territory; it feels ‘safe’ and ‘known’. Dieters know exactly what to expect; they sign up, they buy the books, special food and equipment, they tell friends and relations so that their food can be ‘policed’ and keep them being ‘good’, they make charts to plot the progress of their weight loss, they go to clubs with lots of other women in the same boat as them, to be weighed and praised (or condoled) and they talk the same language as all the other women out there on diets. Constantly.
Beyond Chocolaters venture out into completely new territory. There aren’t that many other Beyond Chocolaters out there in comparison with the major diet companies. There’s nothing to buy apart from the book. No 'special food' (just the rather bewildering concept of being able to choose from ALL foods!), no gadgets. Beyond Chocolaters may find it tricky to talk openly about what they’re doing because there’s no shared vocabulary with the majority of other women. And, if they’ve come to Beyond Chocolate from many years of dieting, there may well be re-education to be undertaken with near and dear ones who think they are helping by ‘policing’ all food and drink. Charts may help, but are not a requirement. Weight loss can take a back seat to some of the other benefits of Beyond Chocolate and the Beyond Chocolater can find that her relationship with food and her own body takes over from the initial desire to lose weight.
All of this can be isolating to the new Beyond Chocolater. A changing relationship with food and her body can (in some cases) result in weight gain and this can further alienate the new Beyond Chocolater from her former dieting buddies – not only has she dropped out of the choir, but LOOK! IT DOESN’T WORK! SHE’S GAINED WEIGHT!! And this can lead the new Beyond Chocolater to think, ‘Ok, I know I can lose weight on a diet, and I do understand and believe in the Beyond Chocolate principles, so if I combine the two, I’ll lose weight AND improve my relationship with food and my body.’
And maybe she can. I personally can’t see how the two can be compatible. But that’s just me. One of the beauties of Beyond Chocolate is that everyone gets to make their own choices – if it works for you, keep doing it. But, at some point, I suspect, you will reach a point at which a firm decision will be needed – do you continue dieting or do you commit to working with the Beyond Chocolate principles? I'd be curious to hear from anyone who can do both.