WEEK 1 RECAP: Educate – this week we learned about different eating styles. Empower – we took the first step and committed to this program. Explore – we are identifying our current eating style and approach to food while exploring a mindful eating exercise.WEEK 1 ACTION STEPS:• Use the Food/Mood worksheet to capture your eating habits this week. Write down what you eat, when you eat, where you eat and how you feel (rushed, calm, happy, angry, sad, frustrated, exhausted, etc.) • Explore the recipes in your guide and look at the suggested meals. Remember you can change any meal as this is your intuitive divine journey.• Introduce yourself in our private FB group. (Note for coaches – if you are using a fb group, insert the link here. If not, you can delete this line or edit to direct your client elsewhere)WEEK 1 HOMEWORK:1. After reading about the different eating archetypes, how would you define your eating style? Write down the truths of how you eat and how you approach food right now. WEEK 2: DITCH THE DIETThis program was designed for you and designed to work with your innate wisdom to clear the clutter and confusion around eating. Let’s face it, there’s always going to be a flashy new diet trend. There’s always going to be science and hype to back this way of eating or that way of eating, but that doesn’t mean that it will work for you. Your bestie, your neighbor, your coworker, your mail carrier, your gym buddy – they’re always going to share the things that work for them. Your body is unique. Your health situation is unique. You are where you are and who you are as a result of all the factors that have been at play in your life, your genetics and your environment. By following basic guidelines, tapping into your intuition and truly honoring “self”, you can shift into a lifestyle that nourishes your body, mind and spirit.Last week we began by exploring how and what you eat. That exercise helps provide a baseline for who you are as an eater right now. This week we will be talking about the diet mentality and we will begin exploring mindfulness.Diet MentalityDiet mentality is usually learned and engrained. We’re not born with it. In fact, as babies, we are innately intuitive! We cry or fuss when we’re hungry. We stop nursing when we’re full. Our body spits up if someone overfeeds us. We connect nourishment with social contact and physical connection because we are either nursed at our mother’s breast or held close while taking a bottle. The diet mentality is formed as we are taught to eat our first bites. Open, chew, try, yum, one more bite, finish that up. Meals and snacks are scheduled, enforced and/or sometimes denied or withheld. Games are played to entice us to open up and swallow foods that we may or may not enjoy. There’s laughter when we spit out the bites that we don’t like and cheers and clapping when we finish. We are conditioned to eat and conditioned to respond to food in a way that’s very different to what we experienced as our first nourishment. We are introduced to non-nutritive food items like high-fructose corn syrup, candies, sodas and highly processed foods. And our ability to tap into our needs becomes further and further skewed.Then, the messages about food and nutrition and health come into play. Everything from what vegetable are best, whether or not eggs and coffee are okay, are fats healthy or bad… to diet trends and whether we’re supposed to eat every 30 minutes and include snacks or opt for intermittent fasting with 6-8 or 12 hour windows between eating… or is Paleo or Keto or Vegan or Mediterranean or Fruitarian or Raw or Weston A.Price, GAPS, FODMAP, SCD, a 21-day Detox or the Bulletproof plan the way? We get mixed messages that are confusing, opposing and polarizing. Between mixed messages and science that supports both sides of the equation, we’re left wondering what to do. To clear the muddy waters and uncover the foods that work to support your body you must do some work. As the program progresses you will find your sweet spot. The key to getting there is awareness and connection with yourself. The first step is in being aware and reconnecting is to acknowledge that dieting doesn’t foster intuition. I’d like you to make a commitment right now to ditch diets for good. Never again will you have to worry about willpower, guilt, following someone else’s rules obediently… never again will you feel like you’re failing because you choose to eat or not eat something.If you’re struggling to affirm the diet ditch, let’s talk about health and willpower for a moment. First, I think we can agree that what we eat has an impact on our health. Headaches do too… right? If you have a headache, you feel pain and have a hard time doing what you need to do. Now, let’s say you go to the doctor because of your headache. The doctor wouldn’t tell you to use your willpower to change your headache. I mean, you wouldn’t accept it if your MD said, “If you were strong enough, and if you want it bad enough, your headache will go away.” So, why… WHY… do we accept willpower as a facet of nutritional health and weight balancing? In the same way that your doctor should ask you about when the headache came on, what it feels like, where it hurts and what makes it better, so should we approach weight and eating. What foods make you feel good? Why are you eating? When do you feel best eating? How much is enough for your body? Do you see what I mean? Willpower is about denying natural desires by applying a set of prescriptive rules. Intuition is about honoring natural desires by fostering connection and flexibility.MindfulnessMindfulness is a conscious awareness of your thoughts, feelings, physical sensations, bodily functions, movements, actions, reactions, beliefs, fears, anxieties and desires. Being mindful means that you are present and aware of: • your feelings• the sensations you experience in and on your body• your physical and emotional needs What mindfulness does is help reconnect you so you can experience your life and your feelings while honoring your needs and desires. Where mindfulness challenges is in its fullness. We are tasked to experience ALL feelings — the joyful ones and the hard ones. Feeling your feelings (even the really difficult ones) and working through them increases your capacity for handling stress, improves your self-compassion and enhances your self-awareness. Feeling your feelings also means that you won’t need to feed them with anything other than acknowledgement and compassion. This is how we break the emotional eating cycle and connect to true hunger and eating for pleasure (we’ll get there later in the program!)There is nothing to be done with feelings other than feel them. A mindfulness practice will: Give you the tools to slow down, notice what you are feeling, notice what you want to do in response to that feeling, and allow you the space to decide on your next steps. Help you engage with your day to day life. Encourage your active participation in all aspects of your life, health and well-being. Offer choices, alternatives and understanding Beginning MindfulnessJust like any habit, mindfulness takes practice. The more you do it, the easier it becomes… and the best way to get started is just to give it a go!One of my favorite ways to be mindful is to set an alarm on my phone that goes off several times each day. When the alarm goes off, I stop what I’m doing and take two beautiful, full, deep breaths. I ask myself, “What am I feeling?” and then name the feeling. There’s no judgment, no label (not good or bad) and no action other than naming. For example, I could say, “nervous… I am feeling nervous. This is what nervous feels like.” Or, “Happy. I am feeling happy.” The object it not to do anything about the feeling. This is just a practice in identifying and connecting to feeling.WHAT TO EATIf you’ve been following a diet or if you have dietary restrictions for health reasons, what to eat likely fits within a set list of items. As you learn to be an intuitive eater, there’s less “you must” and more “you may!” Next week, we will be working on giving ourselves permission to eat. For now, let’s touch on boundaries. Learning to be an intuitive eater involves one main boundary… No one gets to dictate how, what and when you should eat unless you are managing a specific health condition. For example, if you have diabetes, you need to make food choices that support balanced blood sugar. If you have Celiac disease, you must avoid gluten. The non-negotiables are only the things that are necessary for your specific health concerns.Use this space to record your non-negotiables, if you have any. What I must avoid Why I need to avoid it What happens if I don’t Next, take a minute and complete the mindful eating assessment on the next page. Similar to the eating type assessment you did last week, this one can help you see areas of strength. Exploration: MINDFUL EATING ASSESSMENT Answer yes or no. If you fall somewhere in the middle, read over the statement a few times and then answer according to how you would act most of the time. Awareness Yes No1 Before I eat, I pause to appreciate colors and smells of food. 1 02 I notice when the food I eat affects my emotional state. 1 03 I taste every bite of food I eat. 1 04 I recognize when I am eating and not hungry. 1 0 Awareness total Recognition of Hunger/Fullness Yes No5 I stop eating when I am full, even when it is something I love. 1 06 I recognize when I feel hungry, as opposed to other sensations, like thirsty or bored. 1 07 I sometimes take a second helping even though I am full. 0 18 I only allow myself to eat at set mealtimes and snack times, regardless of how I feel. 0 1 Recognition of Hunger/Fullness total Nonjudgment Yes No9 I categorize foods into “good” or “bad,” based on how healthyI think they are. 0 110 I don’t allow myself to eat certain foods (aside from allergens). 0 111 I get upset with myself if I eat something unhealthy or if I eat too much. 0 112 I strive to be a “perfect eater. 0 1 Nonjudgement total Combined total – highest total score is 12 High scores in each category and overall indicate better mindful eating skills. Keep in mind that there are many people who practice mindful eating regularly and do not have a “perfect” score. This assessment shows you where you are now as a mindful eater. You may complete this assessment again after you finish the program so you can track your progress.