There is no doubt about it; the holiday season revolves around food. It seems everywhere you turn there is another reason to eat, from office parties to friends sharing homemade Christmas cookies escaping the abundance is hard to do and sticking to your healthy eating plan easily goes out the ...There is no doubt about it; the holiday season revolves around food. It seems everywhere you turn there is another reason to eat, from office parties to friends sharing homemade Christmas cookies escaping the abundance is hard to do and sticking to your healthy eating plan easily goes out the window.

But this year can be different; you can enjoy the festivities without overeating and celebrate this holiday season on your own terms.

1. Understand that you can celebrate differently this year. We develop patterns of behavior and easily fall into them when the pattern is triggered by something familiar. For instance, if you have always overeaten cookies at Christmas time than you developed a pattern of behavior and you will repeat that behavior each time Christmas rolls around unless you recognize it. Once you realize that this is your pattern you can ask yourself, “Does this have to happen?” This can allow you to pause and understand that you have a choice in how you act.

2. Visualize yourself handling eating differently. If you have always acted a certain way you might not even be able to see a different way of acting. If for instance you have always eaten two full plates of Christmas dinner and felt so full you were sick after words, you might not even be able to see another way of going through the holiday. But there are many people who eat well during the holiday and you can be one of them, you just have to be open to the possibility. Sit down quietly with yourself and play through in your mind how you would like Christmas dinner to go this year, how would you like to eat, how would you like to feel after the meal. By going there first in your mind you give yourself a different option of how to act.

3. Pick a healthy role model. Who do you know that eats well and controls themselves well around food. This can be someone you know personally or someone you read about or heard about before. Now let yourself imagine how they would handle the abundance of holiday foods. Pretend that you are walking into a holiday party with them and mirror their actions, try to imagine what they are thinking about and what they are focused on. This gives you a new perspective on your holiday events.

These simple strategies can give you the strength and understanding you need to breeze through the holidays feeling great and avoiding the overeating trap that leads to holiday weight gain.

Author's Bio: 

Dr. Becky Gillaspy, DC is the founder of Dr. Becky Fitness, LLC.