Top 6 Tips for Stress Free Family Gatherings

Holiday gatherings can be a very stressful time when unresolved family dynamics are in the mix.  Physical and emotional distance often seem to smooth out unpleasant family relationships, yet when you get together all the “old stuff” comes back.  Rather than letting family issues ruin your holidays, follow these simple tips.

  1. Holidays are not the time to work through old hurts. Decide what you are hoping to accomplish, for example, getting through a pleasant dinner without feeling tense. That might require steering away from patterns that trigger tension. Stick to this plan.
  2. Accept your family for who they are without expecting them to be different.  Unrealistic expectations are disappointing.  You might be working through your “stuff”, but others might not be.
  3. Limit your intake of alcohol to ensure you are able to stick to your plan.  Overindulging in alcohol has a way of bringing intense emotions to the surface.
  4. Enjoy the moments that are pleasant and let everything else go.
  5. Have a positive mantra you repeat to yourself before and throughout the event to keep you on track. For example, I feel great about myself.  I am making wonderful changes.  Focus on the positive things in your life.
  6. Stick to the present, enjoying each moment as it comes, rather than dragging up past incidents or worrying about the future.

If you believe your family situation is so unpleasant that it will compromise your well-being it is perfectly ok to let your family know that this year you will be unavailable.

Go into the event with a positive mind and energy, understanding that you can choose how to manage yourself in any situation.

Weight Management During the Holidays



Holidays can be a stressful time of year as far as weight is concerned.  However, there are many practical steps you can take to make sure that you enjoy the holidays and stay healthy.    If you have been wanting to lose weight but have not yet committed to doing things differently or if you have been making a serious effort to feed your body healthy food, follow these guidelines for simple suggestions.

1.  When you attend a party focus on enjoying the people or the event as the main attraction rather than the food.  Try to learn at least one thing you did not know each person you talk to and you will keep your mind engaged.

2. The idea of “skipping” meals so that you can eat later is really not effective.  Make sure you eat regularly spaced meals throughout the day rather than waiting for food at the party.  That way you can ensure you are eating healthy proportioned meals and can add in one or two extras at the party.  Going to an event already fed allows you to be choosy about what you select.

3. Have a mental picture of what you would like to eat at a party even if it includes something salty, fatty or sweet.  Give yourself permission to eat that special treat, taking your time to choose it, taste it and enjoy it.

4. Alcohol always makes it more challenging to stick to your mental plan so limit your consumption by simply having a glass of water for every drink you have, choosing a wine spritzer or a light beer.

5. Continue to exercise throughout the party season. Adding a nice walk before or after an event, going to a yoga class or riding your bike feels good, burns calories and lifts your mood.

Following these practical solutions will go a long way towards making your holiday season empowering and enjoyable.

Weight Management that Works!

Healthy Relationship with Food

Create a Healthy Relationship with Food; Weight Management that Works!

Like many people, you may be unhappy with your body image, struggle with food and eating issues, and are frustrated with your inability to change.

Your challenge with food could be manifesting itself in a number of different ways:

  • Restricting Your Food Intake: Do you exercise in order to balance out what you have eaten, skip meals, obsessively count calories and limit how much food you eat?
  • Eating Too Much:  Is your life a merry go round of diets and disappointments?  Do you binge eat, eat compulsively, comfort yourself with food or eat to combat stress?

While you may be focused on issues around food and either under or over-eating, in reality the core cause of your food issues is likely something different altogether. Some of these core causes can be:

  • Trauma
  • Abuse
  • Relationship issues
  • Self-esteem
  • Anxiety
  • Depression

Identifying and treating the core cause of your eating issue is key to the effective change and healthy relationship with food you are looking for.  Get off the roller coaster of pain associated with dieting.  Learn how to


The Top 5 Distracting Behaviours Your Subconscious Mind Uses to Keep You Comfortable

If you are regularly experiencing any of these 5 unhealthy behaviours you may have unresolved emotional pressure pushing on your subconscious.

1.  Eating too much when you are not hungry even to the point of feeling physically ill.  Telling yourself that you will not do it again and then you do.

2. Drinking too much even if it causes negative backlash in your relationships, work or health.

3. Doing drugs on a regular basis and that drug use begins to cause you problems personally, professionally or legally.

4. Gambling even if the amount of money you lose effects your ability to pay your bills or meet your financial plan.

5. Shopping too much, your closet is full, your credit cards are at maximum capacity and your continue to purchase things you don’t need.

If you are living with one or more of these patterns on a basis enough to cause you problems in your physical/ emotional health, relationships or work feel free to contact me for help.  It often feels frightening to make the first step to get help however you will be surprised by how quickly these issues can begin to resolve.