Understanding that certain thought patterns are not helpful is very different from actively applying and creating new thought patterns and behaviours around healthy eating concepts. Here’s how to break old thought patterns for good.
Improving our relationship with food isn’t something that is going to happen overnight. The first step to any behaviour change is to become aware of the behaviours and thoughts. And this is relatively easy step. The actually change the habit of thinking, however, we need to challenge it. We need to actively apply helpful principles every day.
Think of breaking old thoughts as a bush walk
Diet mentality is a well-worn trail in the woods. It’s been walked for years. The trail is easy to recognise. The soil is patted down and solid. No branches or bushes blocking your way. It’s easy and comfortable. We don’t need to think about it.
Now, think about going off trail. When you are trying to break old habits, as you do when challenging unhelpful thoughts around food, you’re literally going off the trail. It’s challenging. You need to dodge the roots, the mounds, and the ditches. It is tough. And you may fall.
But the cool thing is is that each time you take the new path through the woods, gradually, it becomes easier to travel. With time, the path will look similar to the well-travelled path.
When we are challenging unhelpful thoughts, we need to go off the path. We need to confront discomfort. We need to break through the bushes knowing that over time these bushes will be easier to walk though.
Every time you notice an old thought rooted in diet mentality, just imagine yourself in the woods, cutting down the bushes, clearing the path. You’re giving yourself the opportunity to forge a new, healthier path.
If you are struggling with your relationship with food or want some more information, reach out 🙂
©2023 [alice bleathman dietitian]