The way to apply steadiness in social consuming conditions

Have you ever felt that it is more difficult to keep the balance you want in social eating situations?

Food is such a big part of our social life, cultures, traditions and festivals.

However, it can also feel overwhelming or frustrating to face these situations as you learn to strike the right balance between food and luxury foods.

Constantly feeling “off the track” by making decisions that are not in line with your balance can be very frustrating and provoke some negative thoughts about yourself that is not what we want you to be to experience.

Read on to learn how to find more peace with food in social eating situations.

Why it feels difficult to keep your balance in social eating situations

There are a few common reasons that social eating is more difficult to manage, and when you become aware of these, you will learn how to make yourself more comfortable eating in social situations.

1. The environment is different from your normal routine

When you find yourself in social situations, whether it be at a friend’s house for a girls night out, a family barbecue or a wedding, the physical environment is set up very differently than your space at home and this can have a big impact on your meal choices without that you will notice.

In many of these situations, for example, there is often food on display for grazing, such as bowls of french fries or a sausage board. This could simply make you want certain foods that you normally wouldn’t say are the most satisfying for you.

In addition, in these situations, you will deal with and interact with more people, while at home you may be alone, with your partner, or with your family.

Often times, when you’re at a social event, you have a lot more people to chat with and maybe even various activities happening. This can make it harder for you to remember to check your hunger and fullness, or to really know what you are eating.

2. You have no control over the food options

One of the most common reasons many people feel that social situations are difficult to deal with is because they have no control over the food that will be there.

When you don’t know what is being served, all the luxury items you want, and a lack of nutritious options, it’s easy to get frustrated and impossible to balance.

3. Peer pressure

You have probably experienced this before.

You’ve chosen what to eat or not to eat on a particular day and someone is commenting on it.

“You eat a salad, mean, live a little.”

Or maybe, “You are going to eat that sweet cake? I’m keto and I would never eat that. ”

Peer pressure is so common at social events and we hear from many customers who feel the need to eat the same way others do or feel pressured by family and friends who comment on what they are or are not eating. Unfortunately, you will likely experience this at some point in your trip.

6 social eating tips to help you find the right balance

Luckily we’re here to help!

Navigating social eating doesn’t have to be as difficult as it currently feels. With a few simple social eating tips to keep in mind, it will be much easier for you to balance your food choices.

1. Set a clear intention

In addition to being mindful, you can also formulate a clear intention of what you want to experience at the event or meeting.

Are you here to meet old friends you haven’t seen in a long time? To celebrate the wedding of two of your family members? Enjoy the delicious meal in your favorite restaurant?

Or do you want to be able to enjoy the food at an event without restriction or feelings of guilt, so that you can concentrate on socializing and not get caught up in eating rules?

These are all intentions where dieting is not a top priority – and that’s fine! Sometimes the focus is instead on enjoyment. If so, allow yourself to mindfully enjoy the atmosphere and what you experience there, rather than sticking to any eating rules or “shoulds” that you can imagine.

By the time you’re no longer at the social event and getting back into your routines, diet may become more of a priority again. This is the balance that we teach within the method that enables you to pace up and down between food and indulgence in the many phases of your life.

2. Create balanced meals and snacks

One of the easiest ways to maintain balance in social eating situations is to remember the basics of balanced eating habits. One of the core practices we teach our customers is to prepare a balanced meal or snack.

This is how they get the food they need and at the same time enjoy the food they love, no matter where they are!

We do this using our Foundational Five system, and if you are new to this system, you can download our free Balanced Eating Guide, which details exactly what you should have on your plate for balance.

Keeping this simple system in mind at social events will make it a lot less stressful for you. You can look at any buffet, sausage board or snack table and easily visualize what you can add to your plate to create a balanced meal.

Your buffet meals will probably not look like the meals you cook at home, but again – that’s fine!

The Foundational Five framework gives you the guidance you need to know that you are doing your best in any situation so that you can approach any social situation with confidence.

3. Bring a nutritious option to share

When you know that there is an abundance of luxury foods in most social situations but you tend to miss nutritious foods, is there something you could bring that is both nutritious and enjoyable?

This could be a delicious broccoli salad with ranch dressing for a summer BBQ, a plant-based green bean casserole for a Christmas party, or a homemade dip for a balanced snack at girls’ nights or birthday parties.

4. Be mindful

It can be easy to get caught up in social events in the moment, especially the changing environment and peer pressure we just talked about.

One strategy we share with our Mindful Nutrition Method ™ members to help them manage this is to be mindful of social situations.

What exactly do we mean by mindful? Let’s say your aunt insists you eat her brownies or you walk past a dessert table with all sorts of sweets and treats. And let’s say you don’t really like brownies, or candy isn’t your thing, but in the past you almost always took a handful of something off the candy table because it was just there, or yes, the brownies just because they were on it duration.

Does this seem familiar to anyone? These are examples of mindless eating that is a major contributor to the lack of balance you have experienced in social situations in the past.

Bring mindfulness into play this time. If you know brownies aren’t your jam, check in with yourself. Do you really want the brownie? If not, just say no thanks. When you know you are more of a hearty person than a sweet person, keep walking past this table and spending your time somewhere else where you really enjoy it.

Mindfulness in these moments can help you make decisions that feel really good and right to you, which will help you avoid the stress, guilt, or overwhelming caused by eating unbalanced in social eating situations.

5. Practice balance on the day of your social event

Now there will also be situations in which you cannot or simply do not want to bring a food option with you. For example, when you go to a restaurant or your parents’ house for your mother’s famous little something.

In these situations, you can focus on practicing balance not just at the social event but throughout the day. Knowing that you will enjoy foods that are mostly on the enjoyment side of the balance spectrum allows you to prioritize nutritious foods elsewhere in the day.

We are not talking about fasting on the day or “catching up” on the pleasure of eating afterwards, because we know that these are not examples of balanced eating habits.

Eating for a day will not affect or destroy your balance or health.

We’re just talking about finding a balance between food and enjoyment rather than succumbing to all-or-nothing thinking.

When you go out to a birthday dinner and know that the options are all stimulants, you can focus on having a nutrient-dense smoothie and vegetable bowl for lunch so your body has everything it needs to feel great.

But don’t let that stress you – remember that this is not about black and white, but about thinking in bigger contexts. It’s about finding an overall balance.

6. Prepare to communicate your limits

Peer pressure is so common at social events and we hear from many customers who feel the need to eat the same way others do or feel pressured by family and friends who comment on what they are or are not eating. Unfortunately, you will likely experience this at some point in your trip.

Having a few sentences in mind to use can be helpful in setting your boundaries and ending the conversation.

  • “It looks so delicious! I’m not really in the mood for that right now, but thanks for the offer. “
  • “I’m really enjoying it [fill in the blank] now, but maybe I’ll try it out later. ”
  • “Unfortunately, I’m not doing so well when I eat [fill in the blank]so I choose not to eat it today. “
  • “I actually really love [fill in the bank] – I find it so satisfying. ”
  • “This is actually what my body needs / wants right now, so I listen to that.”

Feeling more comfortable with social eating

As with anything, it takes time and practice to learn how to be comfortable with eating in social eating situations. You are unlikely to feel safe overnight. Keep these tips in mind and think about how you feel after social events to understand what you might want to repeat or do differently the next time. You will be able to slowly but surely change how you feel in these situations.

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