I blew it. BIG TIME.
I’ve talked constantly online and in real life about how great I feel since I cut out sugar. Overcoming this sugar addiction has helped me countless ways beyond weight loss, and I gladly tell anyone who wants to listen.
But last week, I blew it.
I made my first mistake at the grocery store. My kids had been asking to do a certain homeschool project that involves one my greatest temptations in life: OREOS. Honestly, I thought I’d be fine. I’ve learned other ways of naturally satisfying my sweet tooth without sugar, so what could it hurt if I buy some cookies?
But then we go to Publix and of course the Oreos happen to be BOGO. Well, now I HAVE to buy not one, but two packages and apparently there are so many more flavors available than the last time I bought Oreo cookies. My daughters and I are really into the mint/chocolate thing, so when they saw MINT Oreos, they squealed with delight. (And I inwardly groaned…“Maybe I can just try one bite.”)
They quickly picked out another flavor and when we got home my brain was abuzz with thoughts of making a healthier minty/chocolate treat I could make for myself to enjoy while they were working on their lunar cycle Oreos project. But somehow that idea faded with my resolve as I began placing their cookies on the paper plates. I just had to try one. And I did.
STOP. This is where I really should have stopped! But oh no, the fall into temptation got way worse. As my little astronomers were happily working, I probably shoved another 6 Oreos into my mouth…maybe more. It was such a momentary rush of false pleasure followed suddenly by a rush of shame and guilt.
I’ve done downward spirals of mommy guilt before, and this time I decided I was NOT GOING TO DO IT. This one relapse was NOT going to be my undoing! I was not going down that road again.
Here’s what I quickly did to stop the guilt cycle:
- STOP AND BREATHE. I literally closed my eyes and deep breathed for about 30 seconds.
- CHANGE YOUR THOUGHT PATTERN. Instead of allowing all those ugly, demeaning thoughts to continue stripping away my self-worth like I have done many times in the past, I began thinking good thoughts about myself. Having a collection of good thoughts/Scriptures easily accessible helps. I have a note on my phone of some of my favorite ones so I can quickly scroll through them at any time. If you are a praying kind of mama, this is a great time to pray! I certainly needed God’s help in that moment!
- PHONE-A-FRIEND. After doing those things, I texted a few of my friends who also follow the same healthy eating plan. I felt that I needed to be transparent and have some extra accountability. My friends were all so encouraging which really helped my outlook as well, and the very next meal I was back on track. I’m so glad that one sugar binge didn’t turn into a cheat week or month or longer this time!
Now, I know, this can seem really dramatic about eating some cookies. I mean, there are worse things in the world. But to me it’s a huge deal because I know sugar has been one of my weaknesses for many years. I still feel like a recovering sugar-holic.
But this 3-step plan has worked for me in other issues as well. Like when I’ve just had it with my kids and yelled at them. That’s NOT the mom I want to be. Many times I’ve gotten into a guilt cycle over that as well. I have one friend that I know I can always reach out to when I’ve had a bad attitude with my kids, and she does the same with me.
Stop, Think (Pray), and Reach Out to a Friend works for almost any issue of mommy shame! If you stop the guilt before it continues on its negative roll, you can prevent yourself from further damage. You are worth it mama!