Be grateful for your future self

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love it for the food and for the opportunity to share quality time free of expectations with my friends and loved ones. It’s a time to gather around a feast and get intimate. But at the heart of it, it is a feast. It’s the feast of all feasts filled with turkey, gravy, green bean casserole, garlic mashed potatoes, marshmallow covered sweet potatoes and the pist de resistance – pumpkin pie! My mouth is watering just thinking about all the yummy goodness of what the day will bring.

So, how do you reap the goodness without the indulgence, and 5lbs? It’s actually not only simple, but it’s really easy to implement and it goes something like this:

Give yourself, the person you are today, your “now” self, the day off. And instead be your “future” self. Be that best version of yourself. Let that self shine so brightly the “now” self doesn’t have a choice but to take a back seat.

Your “now” self is the one that usually lives our everyday lives, and mostly lives it on autopilot. The “now” self is the one that lives for the moment, because to your now self there is nothing more important than taking care of business and making sure you and everyone around you is happy, at this very moment. Your “now” self is going to make your mouth water, it’s going to convince you of how amazing it’s going to taste, how amazing every bite is going to be and it’s going to push that doubt, the feeling of guilt, away by saying, “One day won’t hurt.”

But in reality it does hurt. It hurts your pride, it hurts your momentum, it hurts your waist line, it hurts your blood sugar levels, it hurts your muscles the 1-4 days after when you’re at the gym trying desperately to erase the damage of one meal. It hurts. There’s no doubt about it. And hurting doesn’t sound in the least bit like “goodness”.

This is not to say you shouldn’t enjoy. On the contrary, I want you to soak it all in, and truly taste the goodness, enjoy the feast, enjoy the day. Having a taste of everything, including Grandma’s famous pumpkin pie, is important, and also very very different from a plate, or two or three, piled so high you can barely lift it. This is not about deprivation. There’s no reason to deny yourself. This is about motivation. Motivation to enjoy. Motivation to enjoy everything, not just the food in front of you.

So, when you wake up Thanksgiving morning, be your future self, the self that is the happiest, healthiest and fittest it’s ever been. Then act as if you already are that person. Remind yourself that you didn’t get to this place by giving in, giving up, and letting “holiday momentum” sweep you up and take you away to the land of the sick, the hurt, the tired, the grumpy, the unhealthy. Then when you approach all the tempting and indulgent goodness on your Thanksgiving table and you’re loading up your plate, ask your “future” self to do the serving, make the choices, and take the bites.

And a little exercise today and tomorrow certainly doesn’t hurt either, in fact I highly suggest it. Get out, get your heart pumping, work up a sweat, and breath hard. Just remember it’s not a reason to indulge, it’s a chance to more completely motivate your future self.

So, I guess the questions is, what does your future self see as “goodness” on your Thanksgiving table?

Happy & Healthy Thanksgiving! Mel

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Categories: Eat

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