Ever find that you start a new diet, and you’re really excited about it? You tell others around you, looking for support and encouragement, but for some reason you can’t find it?
When I started my keto journey, I was nervous, but also super excited. I was getting professional help, turning my life around for the better, and I had support from my family, boyfriend, and friends. Sounds like a dream come true… my only issue was that sometimes these wonderful people would unintentionally try to pressure me to cheat when I wasn’t supposed to.
If a stranger was telling me to eat Cheetos on a Monday, I could easily tell them no. If people at school wanted to go out for pizza, that was a serious struggle for me. I can honestly say Greek salads SAVED ME while I was in grad school. It was my go-to, knowing it was always going to be compliant and delicious.
The thing about going to eat with the people who know you is that it is comfortable. And they actually know what is going on in your life. It is so easy for them to say “you’ve been doing so well, enjoy a slice!” Or for my family to say “one bite won’t kill you.” No, it won’t kill me. Yes I have been doing well – and I want to keep it that way. It is so easy for them, and they have no idea how hard they are making it on me.
I never knew I had the willpower that would shine through me during those four months of working with Dr. Frank. I was holding myself accountable, and not one person could convince me that I was doing well enough to cheat on this new lifestyle. This process taught me that given all of my mistakes in the past, I’m really fu*king strong.
It was after how many times of giving into these people I love that I could finally stand up and say NO? Probably a million. But that million and first time was my time to shine. And I want to help you stay as strong as I did during that strict time in my life.
When you are starting a new diet, you need to put your foot down. It starts with educating the people around you first. You have to be very forward and say “this is what I’m doing, I would like your support, and this is how you can help.” Explain why you are changing the way you eat. Mine was for health purposes. So I told everyone “I have unhealthy numbers for a person my age, I am extremely overweight, and I am overall unhappy. I started working with a professional to help me lower all of my numbers, get into shape, and become a better version of myself.”
I then explained to everyone what changed I would be making. Starting with my diet for 30 days, I will have no cheat meals, I am cutting out all processed foods, refined carbohydrates, sugar, and anything that isn’t whole. After that, I will have one cheat meal every week, which will be on Saturdays, no more than that. I NEED YOUR HELP WITH THIS. I made it extremely clear that I needed the support of others, and I made it clear as to why.
I need your support because I don’t have the power to say no right now. I love you too much to say no. I need you to not even offer something to “be nice” when you’re eating cookies and I’m having cucumbers. I need your support because I can’t do this alone and I don’t want to do this alone. You have to be selfish. This is the time when you are going to take care of yourself – not anyone else. You HAVE TO remember that!! It’s easy to say yes to chips if you are just giving into someone else and making them happy. I don’t care if it’s your mother or your 5th cousin twice removed. When someone offers you something, you have to say no thank you. This isn’t about them. This is about YOU!!
There are some people in your life that, no matter how much you tell them no, they will continue to ask. You have two options here: continue to say no and explain why EVERY time, or cut back on spending time with them. That sounds harsh, but when it comes to your health (and you can’t say no to them) it will be the best. THIS IS NOT FOREVER!! This is until you form the habits that you want to stick with, or until they can learn to ease back on offering you junk when they know you shouldn’t be having it.
It is a process that took me time to learn, and you feel like it shouldn’t be that hard for other people to support you. Cut them slack, because sometimes they don’t remember in the beginning. But know that every time you say no to something that isn’t the best for you, you are becoming that much better for YOURSELF. That is an amazing thing. And know this too, there are communities all over the internet that we have access to that will help you on your journey. Reach out to these groups. It is only going to make this process easier for you, and help you to be as successful as you can be.
I hope this post can help you make it easier on yourself when asking others for help. We all need support, and you need to be clear about it with those who mean the most to you. What are your best tips for asking those you love for support? Let me know in the comments!