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Weight loss tips: How to deal with peer pressure at Christmas

December 4, 2013 - Psychology

121228124Friends, family and colleagues who have been supportive the rest of the year may be less tolerant of your weight loss goals at Christmas time, when the pressure to eat calorie-laden food can be immense. Here, we offer some tips for dealing with these situations and staying on track.

Christmas is inescapable and while it’s supposed to be about spending time with ones you love, it can sometimes seem like it’s all about food – especially when others are putting pressure on you to overindulge.

Office feeders

A survey carried out by LighterLife showed that 44% of office workers blame their colleagues for their weight gain. At Christmas time, the pressure to indulge in sugary snacks brought in by co-workers and perhaps skip your lunch break is even worse.

‘Workers might think the desk diet is a productive and efficient approach to managing workload but the lack of a lunch break will not only impact your waistline but your workload,’ said Dr Hilary Jones. ‘A change in mind-set if what people need when it comes to healthy eating’.

TIP: While everyone else is bringing in tins of chocolates, why not try making some healthy snacks and bringing them in to share? If there’s a healthy alternative, you’ll be less tempted to dig your hand in the sweetie tin.

Eating with friends and family

‘In a perfect world, we would all applaud each other’s success and not feel threatened. Unfortunately in reality, we sometimes reflect our own failures or feelings of inadequacy onto those closest to us. Your weight loss success may server as a reminder to others of their own failed attempts,’ explained Mandy Cassidy, LighterLife’s psychology expert.

If this happens to you over the festive period, and you’re faced with friends and family who might say things like ‘you can’t diet today, it’s Christmas’, here’s how to deal with it:

Be honest: let them know how it used to be for you and how it is now. Let them know how unhappy you were and how much more confident you are now.

Be assertive: if you used to take a back seat when you were bigger, don’t go back to your old ways. Speak up. Ask them to explain how they feel so you can resolve the situation.

Just be you: talk to those people who may not believe that they can lose weight. Don’t just ignore negative comments, talk about them, let people know that your LighterLife journey is not just about weight loss and looking good, it’s about changing your mind-set and learning to live in a healthier way.

Finally, remember, you’re a LighterLife member – you are not alone. Others in your group will know exactly how you feel and these sessions will give you the skills to ensure you don’t go off track. Don’t forget to find us on Facebook for more tips and advice throughout the festive period.