That's the title of today's chapter in my LFL workbook.
I'm not sure that eating chocolate cake was the result of a craving. It certainly wasn't if you use this definition from the previous chapter. "You're having a terrific day. You feel focused, positive, and in control. You've exercised and you're eating well. Then suddenly, without warning, it happens. A nagging temptation for one of your favourite foods grabs hold and refuses to let go. The more you try to ignore it the more tormenting it becomes. You feel lightheaded, irritable, edgy. Your mouth waters. Minute by minute, your willpower erodes like a sandcastle at high tide."
I didn't suffer the physical side of craving, in fact there was no real pressure. I simply have a habit of treating myself. The mad part was that I went to the nearest Cafe. It does not serve GREAT coffee and the cake choice was limited to chocolate which is not my favourite. I could so easily have passed this up but I wanted to treat myself to coffee and cake. There is absolutely nothing wrong with the occasional treat unless you let it de-rail you. On this occasion it was not my best choice in many ways. I'm not de-railed so that makes it OK in one sense but I am concerned that I have some habits and ideas around 'treats' that may not contribute to being healthy. I need to take closer note of these things and have a safe plan of action. For instance today I could have lunch in town. Another excuse to visit a Cafe. I will not do this. I will take something to eat at Mum's But I'm not here to be angst ridden about yesterday, going over it ad nauseum. I have an exercise.
I want to right a list of people, places and events that trigger my desire to eat. All I need to do now is get past my denial barrier.
1. When I'm at Mum's I know there are biscuits in the pantry and I want some.
Instead I can always carry a suitable weight-loss friendly snack.
2. When I go into town, especially for a hair appointment I want to treat myself to coffee and cake in a Cafe.
Instead I can make myself a promise to avoid Cafes on my own for 12 months. Ouch!
3. When we are travelling or out for the day I want to treat myself to a Cafe meal which includes unsuitable baked food including dessert.
Instead I can whenever possible pack a picnic lunch and always carry a suitable weight-loss friendly snack. Always carry a bottle of water. Sometime Cafe stops are the most practical way so I will need to plan carefully and make better choices along the way.
4. When we're on the road between home and Whitianga I want to stop at Kuaotuna for one of Sue's extra large, delicious ice-creams in a cone.
Instead I can Let TWJ get on with the driving. He never, or at least very rarely stops and strangely enough this is not something I do when on my own.
5. When I have a 'spare dollar or ten in my pocket I want to go to the Cafe for cake and cappuccino.
Instead I can go to the Cafe but have coffee and no cake. I can do that.
6. When I'm on my own, doing a trip of an hour or more in the car I want to schedule a Cafe stop.
Instead I can practice answer No. 2. Never schedule a Cafe stop. Carry water, fruit, other weight-loss friendly snack and packed lunch if need be.
7. When I am out for a meal with friends I drool over the sweet baking, cakes etc.
Instead I can make the healthiest choices possible. Overcome the embarrassment of thinking others are looking at my food choices. Learn not to stress around friends and food. .... That's an issue for another day.
8. After I have exercised restraint in the above situation I want to stop at the first Cafe and eat luscious cake.
Instead I can practice answer No. 2, drink water, or if I'm truly flagging, stop and have coffee but no cake. Have a weight-loss friendly snack available.
9. When there is baking, homemade or bought, in our house I cannot rest till all is consumed.
Instead I can be wise and have no baking in the house until I feel safe around it. TWJ doesn't need cake and biscuits and I don't have morning or afternoon tea friends visiting.
10. There are many times when I'm too lazy, too tired, too hungry, too upset, too stressed, too excited to plan. I want a sandwich, quickly made, with thickly spread butter filled generously with whatever I can find. The whatever is usually not weight-loss friendly.
Instead I can always have the makings of a lettuce and protein, no bread, sandwich.
I think that covers most of what I need to write down about changing my behaviour in these situations.
There is something more important that I need to work on and that is preparing my mind.
Each night I endeavour to envisage the next day and have a general plan. Sometimes this will change as the day progresses and that can be good or difficult. For instance today has just taken on a whole new shape I had a Drs. appointment at 11 am. It has been cancelled so I will go into town about 2 pm. collect the script, go to the Pharmacy, visit Mum and see that she has afternoon tea then come home. Instead of being out from 10.30 am to 5 pm it will be about 3 hours. Yay!
My day changed twice and I have frittered it away. In the finish TWJ went into town for my meds and I stayed at home, I think I'm very tired from yesterday and not enough sleep as I couldn't even read No ability to concentrate or focus on the words.