Now I’m Free From French Fries

This video by The Happiness Project, sent to me by a good friend, reminded me of something I have heard repeatedly through my mild obsession with reading health and fitness blogs. Most successful fitness and health people will all live by this particular mentality: instead of saying “I can’t eat cookies,” they say (or think to themselves), “I don’t eat cookies.” This small linguistic change shapes their entire perspective for their health and fitness goals as it frames their actions as choices that they made as free-willed individuals and not as things that they were deprived of by forces beyond their control. Its as if by changing one critical word “cant” to “don’t”, you are taking control over your life and your actions and living by a code of healthier, empowered choices and freedoms.

Personally, I don’t steal, I don’t cheat, I don’t drink soda, and I don’t eat fast food. I’m still working on developing that kind of power towards sugar, but its a work in progress and I think I’ve come a long way over the past few years. I need to start reminding myself that I am strong and empowered and that dessert (or whatever other temptation) does not have control over me, so when I see a dessert, I won’t be so quick to gobble it down.

What are you “free” from? What food/behavior do you just simply not do, for the sake of your health, self esteem, and self control?

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3 thoughts on “Now I’m Free From French Fries

  1. burhenne says:

    “I don’t” is SO much more powerful than “I can’t”. I like to apply this to finances too — I like to tell myself that I can afford anything, but I choose what to spend my money on — meaning I don’t spend money on certain things but do spend money on other things.

    I’m free from bread and processed foods since January and that small linguistic change has helped a ton. Why, then, am I still so powerless when it comes to dessert? When I think about practicing the same process I used to free myself from bread and processed foods by saying “I don’t eat dessert”, I panic! Of course I eat dessert, I LOVE dessert!

    Perhaps “I don’t eat dessert on weekdays” or “I don’t eat sweets and candy, but I DO indulge in my favorite tiramisu at this great restaurant” will work for me…we’ll see! 🙂

    Thanks for a great post!

    • That is a great point! Restricting yourself entirely from something you love so much isn’t always the healthiest way of dealing with that relationship. Instead, it can be conditional… as you said, you can tell yourself you don’t eat dessert most of the times, but with certain exceptions. And that can be okay too! It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.

      Thanks for sharing!

  2. […] products and thus having a whole foods, plant-based diet is amazingly liberating. It fits in with this post about being “free” from certain foods/behaviors, or saying “I don’t” […]

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