We’re been thinking a lot about cocktails, being social and food guilt. The weather is starting to warm up over here in San Diego and so are the social events! From networking events to fun dinners out with friends, a week doesn’t pass by when we are faced with the decision to eat what makes us feel good or what is standing in front of us. While both of us agree that it’s important to enjoy your friends and food, we often walk into a social event with certain intentions and we come out on the other end feeling guilty or uncomfortable.
We also find that many women dread going out to eat with friends because they already know they will sabotage their eating habits. Or maybe worse, they have fun and feel terrible the next day for overindulging.
Does this ever happen to you?
We know it happens to us! Eating and drinking in social situations can cause anxiety, depression, guilt, and fear! Have you ever had a food hangover or a long hangover that doesn’t seem to get better? Guilt and regret contributes to that!
So why does this happen? Here are a few things:
During social events often times our nerves get the best of us. Not knowing what to say, having to talk to new people has us heading straight for the drinks or appetizers. Having food or drinks in our hand gives us something to do. Instead of awkward silence we end up putting food in our mouth!
Or we can be having so much fun or talking so much we eat more than we are hungry for or we drink more than we need.
Or maybe we can’t say no because we don’t want to be rude or disrespectful! Someone offers us a drink or food or offers twice and it’s awkward or uncomfortable to say no.
So we end up eating, which isn’t a big deal, but we end up eating foods that we know don’t nourish our body and we didn’t want in the first place. The next day we feel tired, bloated, or full of guilt (this can show up as a hangover for some). What makes it even worse is we often don’t “remember” there is a difference between feeling bloated and gaining weight and the bloated feeling will go away. Not to mention we’re feeling a little sad or anxious because alcohol has that chemical effect on our body.
So what do we do?
Here are a few things to help you maintain your healthy habits in social situations:
1. While you’re at the party, just notice if your nerves are having you go straight to the buffet or the bar. If you find you are, think about what you want carefully or find someone you know and strike up a conversation.
2. Practice eating mindfully: take your time, chew slowly, enjoy the food and really taste it.
3. If someone offers you something, have confidence, be gracious, and use the following phrases. Here are some ideas: “Thank you for offering, but that just doesn’t sound like what I’m craving right now” or “You know, I’m not hungry right now, but if I am I will grab a plate, thank you! or “I’m doing great right now, thank you so much for offering”. The more confident and gracious you are the less awkward it becomes for you and others.
4. The day after you might feel and look bloated, but it will go away. There is no reason to feel guilty about eating and drinking! Just drink lots of water and get as many vitamins and minerals as you can (i.e. fruits and vegetables).
Now go out there and practice and experiment! Think of it as a game. How many social events can you attend and enjoy before, during and after!? Remember, practice makes perfect! We hope you have fun!!