They’re learning that I’m not going to give in. On a good day I take a deep breath and explain why the cake just before dinner isn’t a healthy choice. I explain to them that I love them and that I want to take care of them. I explain that the reason Tom’s mother lets him have cake just before dinner is because Tom’s Mum doesn’t love her children. But I do! So no cake!!!
Like a toddler, I am learning that I actually throw tantrums too! Well, at least, my stomach throws tantrums. That groaning, moaning noise my stomach makes when it doesn’t get what it wants? You got it! A Class A tantrum.
My stomach thinks it’s the boss. My stomach thinks it deserves those chips, that cake. It screams and rolls around on the supermarket floor (metaphorically of course) until, exhausted, I give in. I eat the cake. I open the chips. I feed the naughty toddler!! And my stomach quickly learns how to get what it wants.
But I’ve realised that I need to be strong with my stomach, just like with my kids. To view those hunger pains like I would my kid’s tantrums.
Firstly, I check if I’m genuinely, actually, about to die of starvation, and if I’m not I tell my stomach “NO”. Sometimes I can ignore it, keep myself busy and it stops moaning, other times I have to give it a firm talking to.
Next, I make it easier on myself by avoiding tempting situations. I quickly learnt not to take tired, hungry children to the supermarket! The same is true for us – don’t go near unhealthy food if you’re tired, hungry or emotional. Try to do something else that nurtures you, that won’t sabotage your weight loss.
I also try and make a plan before I hit tricky situations. There are events that I struggle to make wise choices at, like Cocktail Parties. Just as I give my kids a snack before we head to the movies, I try and prepare myself before I hit those tempting situations. I have several glasses of water before I go, I decide ahead of time how many canapés I am going to have, I wear my super tight Spanx so I physically can’t go over my limit.
And my stomach is learning I am in charge! Just like my kids, my stomach is learning that I SAY NO BECAUSE I CARE. It still rumbles and tries to trick me into thinking it’s actually hungry. It still craves sweet things, it still tells me lies like “all the other Mums are eating it”, but it no longer controls me and occasionally it listens to me.
I’m learning to ignore my stomach and my stomach is learning to Shut up!!! My stomach still asks for things it doesn’t really need but I just tell it firmly NO. I explain to it that it I love it and that I want it to be healthy. My stomach is learning to behave itself.
So remind yourself next time your stomach rumbles and throws a tantrum – DON’T NEGOTIATE WITH TERRORISTS!!!