Part of a winning strategy is to have a lot of plays to use until the “game” you’re playing becomes second nature. And trust me, the weight loss mind game does start to get better and change over time, with patience and self-reminders throughout each day.
In my last post I shared Mindset Techniques that can help you with your food cravings. Here are four more techniques for you to try.
If you’re still tempted to eat something you shouldn’t after you’ve done all five mindset techniques, then try as many of the Behavioral Techniques below as you need:
1. Distance yourself from the food your crave. When you experience a craving because you see or smell food, you might be able to move that food to an inconvenient place (where you can’t see it) or to get rid of it (give it away, throw it away, or put it down the disposal).
If you can’t remove the food from your immediate presence, you might be able to remove yourself from the scene. Leave the room, go to another part of the room, go to the restroom, or go outside.
2. Drink a no- or low-calorie beverage. Thirst can mask as hunger and trigger you to eat. Consider drinking club soda, water with lemon, diluted juice (if your plan allows it), or another low-calorie drink.
3. Relax. You can teach your body how to relax in a variety of ways. Your library or bookstore has tapes and books on relaxation techniques.
One simple relaxation technique involves focusing on your breathing: Breathe in and out of your nose, slowly counting to four as you inhale and again to four as you exhale. Use very shallow breaths; don’t let your chest rise and fall. Set a timer and keep up this technique for a full three minutes. At the end of the three minutes, you should feel calmer and more in control of your cravings.
4. Distract yourself. Do you remember a time when a natural distraction interrupted your craving and you later were glad you hadn’t eaten? Maybe a friend called, the dog insisted on taking you for a walk, or your boss came to discuss something with you? By the time you finished what you had to do, your craving had weakened or passed. You focused your attention on something else.
Once you stop giving in to cravings and they become much weaker and less frequent, dieting will easier.
(Mindset and Behavioral techniques provided by The Beck Diet Solution)