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Fending Off Diet Saboteurs and Saying No!

If you have difficulty saying no, especially, when people offer you food, you are not alone. It’s a problem for many people.  It’s especially problematic at parties or other events where it’s a ritual Fending off diet saboteurs and saying no.to accompany the event with large quantities of food and drinks. A Super Bowl party is a prime example.  It’s unthinkable to watch the big game without lots of food everywhere.   So, be prepared.

Why do you say yes when you really want to say no?

There are two pieces to this puzzle – one is that some people make it really tough and won’t take no for an answer.  What they want is more important than what you want. There are a myriad of conscious and unconscious reasons people sabotage, insist, or override your choices.  Some people are willfully sabotaging your efforts, others have a pushy or controlling personality, others believe you aren’t having fun unless you are eating, and some think if they are overindulging so should you.

If you are living with someone or have friends who constantly sabotage you it is important to understand what makes them tick and why they may want to undermine you. However, for the Super Bowl party, let’s focus on the second and most important piece of the puzzle – you.

Why do you say yes when you mean no.  How can you turn that around in your favor?

Sometimes you say yes because you:

  • Don’t want to be rude
  • Think you will hurt someone’s feelings
  • Don’t want to disappoint someone (especially when they tell you how hard they worked to make a special dessert just for you)
  • Want to avoid conflict
  • Are a people pleaser and just want to be agreeable
  • Don’t want to offend anyone
  • Learned from early childhood that it’s better to be obedient and do what others want

Taking Back Control

The reasons you say yes are powerful motivators, but let’s scrutinize them and test their validity.

First and foremost, you have to understand that it’s really okay to say no. It doesn’t make you a bad person. You aren’t committing a sin.  You aren’t hurting someone’s feelings (unless that’s what they choose to read into you saying no). You aren’t being rude (actually the person who is insisting is being rude).  You are just saying no.   You are not a child and saying no does not make you disobedient. You are just taking control of your own choices.

Challenge Your Reasons

Challenge your reasons in the form of a question. For instance “Am I really being impolite or am I just saying no because I’m not hungry?” “Am I really offending anyone just because I won’t have a double, double chocolate cheesecake?”  Am I being rude or is the other person being rude for not respecting what I want?”

It may be not happen overnight, but begin realizing that your choices (as it relates to food) have nothing to do with anyone else.

When you say yes, when you really want to say no – who are you really helping? No one. Who are you really hurting? Well, that’s self-evident

Before the party strategy:

  • Rehearse saying no to a good friend – one who won’t challenge you
  • Think about who is most likely to force food on you – visualize saying no to that person
  • Don’t go to the party hungry.  It’s easier to say no when you aren’t ravenous
  • Bring you own healthy dish

2 Responses to Fending Off Diet Saboteurs and Saying No!

I think there is another overlooked yet very important reason that we sometimes say yes when we want to say no. I happen to be one of the people who unconsciously “hoards” food. That includes food that I cannot save for later. If someone offers me food I feel compelled to eat it just because it has value. I find it impossible to say no because somewhere in the back of my mind it is just like throwing away money and it’s that much more food that I won’t have to eat later or out of my own pantry. The problem is that it usually isn’t healthy and I end up eating out of my pantry anyway on top of it all. Once I recognized this I stopped thinking this way!!!

Hi Ann – Thanks so much for sharing your experience with this topic! I was raised to clean my plate so I can fully relate. Good for you to learn how to say no and stopping the habit in its tracks! Cheers ~ Leenie

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