How to overcome food peer pressure

I don’t know about you but I have a huge problem saying no to just about anything. If a friend asked me to help her move to Japan with one day’s notice I’d probably wind up doing it. Sometimes it feels impossible to say no. Plus I’m terrible with coming up with excuses on the spot. Sound like you? One thing I’ve learned (from Chalene Johnson’s book PUSH) is to say “Thank you for thinking of me. Let me check my schedule and get back to you”. I’m still working on it…

Anyway, why do so many of us find it hard to say one of the simplest words in our vocabulary? We should be out there doing things that make us feel happy not agreeing to something that causes stress and anxiety! This whole situation is worse when it affects your goals. You cannot let this happen. You’re goals are the most important things in your life and nothng should come between you achieving them.

I’m gonna throw some examples out there so you can see where I’m coming from and when starting a healthy lifestyle, you’ll probably run into these situations as well.

  • You get invited out to dinner at a greasy burger joint with absolutely nothing healthy on the menu. You agree to it simply because you don’t want to look like the lame health nerd. 
  • Or you bring pretzels to the office party instead of cupcakes and every single person comments on the lack of cupcakes. It’s like you’ve let them down. 
  • A friend tries out a new chocolate cake recipe and is begging you to give it a try. How do you say no to her?
  • And the list goes on and on…

It’s one thing to tell yourself that you don’t “need” a particular food. That’s you being strong and you should be proud for doing so. But saying it to other people feels like you’re disappointing them. In the end you’re really only disappointing yourself. Here are 3 ways to get out of these sticky situations. It may take some practice but you’ll get it.

1. Remind yourself and others of your goals and why you’re doing them.
Thinking about your goals on a daily basis will keep you motivated to keep going. Keep your eyes on the prize and remember to not let anything hold you back!

Explaining to others your goals and the steps your taking to achieve them will help them understand that you’re serious about it and (hopefully) they respect your decision to make the change and become encouragers.

2.  Politely say no.

This is difficult in any situation but all it takes is a little practice. Next time you’re asked out on a lunch date, say something like “No thanks, I brought my lunch today but maybe next time we can grab a salad at so and so restaurant.” Try to twist it around so you’re in control of where you eat. You can even check out the menu ahead of time and choose a healthy option.

If they get upset, that’s their own problem. Keep doing your thing and don’t let it get to you.

3. Encourage others.

When others see how strong you’ve become by sticking to your goals, chances are they’ll want to do the same. It’s time for you to be an encourager! Make sure to let them know how amazing you feel by eating healthier and adding exercise to your routine. Get them on board with you. If you’ve always wanted some fit friends, here you go. Give them tips that you’ve learned along the way, plan gym dates, and share healthy recipes. There’s no better feeling than having a strong support team.

While I’m still not great at saying the dreaded little word, I have been working on turning down junk food. Not everyone understands it and it does become frustrating. I get the feeling people find that my personality is changing in a negative way. As if the only way to be happy is eating sweets. I am changing but I’m feeling amazing while doing so. You’ll discover different ways to go about this type of peer pressure but in the end the only thing that matters is that you’re happy. That’s always the number one goal.

Have some tips for me when saying no? Comment below! I’d love to hear your advice.


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