The

The "Stress" of Holiday Food

From guest contributor, Marcia Wolf.

I started my week with some solid plans, based on what  I already knew:  I didn’t skip any meals, I ate and drank before I arrived, so I  wasn’t ravenous and eager to aggressively sample everything in sight.  I kept something in my hands to occupy myself – first it was my small holiday purse and cell phone, then a glass with a cocktail napkin.  I even wore lipstick – to remind myself that the color might smudge, land on my teeth, or worse yet, on my drinking glass. 

Then
I tried some new behaviors:

Arrive early, intend on being the helper extraordinaire.  Bring plattered food to the table (not the food tester), answer the front door,  hang up coats, put gifts around the tree, pour drinks, clear the table, even play with the family dog – be the  happy  hostess helper

Focus on eating from the vegetable and fruit platter more, avoiding the dip and cheeses.  Pick a few healthy morsels and fill one small plate, once - basically eat less and focus on more meaningful conversations.  Eat more salad and less carbs (dismissing the potatoes and fancy bread and soft butter.)  Walk away from the cookies, not sampling and judging, just bring the humongous box home for everyone else to eat!    

Stay
away from the TV room, where sedentary folks were hanging out with the
notorious chips and dips.   Avoid the nervous noshing by mingling
more
and chatting with a mixed group of people who don’t all know each
other, yet!   

I was firm and accountable with myself, I didn’t deny myself anything – I would try anything JUST ONCE.  The kitchen was full of Trader Joe's appetizers – that freezer to table naughtiness.  I had just one brie puff, a stuffed date with bacon and a jalapeno popper.  My mindful palette slowly told me that none of it truly looked visually appetizing or tasted delicious.  It was actually easy to eat just one of each (and I have witnesses to validate this!)  No seconds, or thirds for me - a HUGE victory.

I even brought healthy foods as my contribution, that if all my tactics failed, I could rely on my contributions.  All in all, I feel I had better self-control, I prepared for bed knowing I tried my very best, sampled a little, and enjoyed myself a lot.  A delightful lavender-induced clean sleep, and I was able to start my day feeling like the winner I know I am!   

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