Offices and workplaces are an absolute minefield when it comes to staying on track with your diet. It seems like every day someone brings in a different cake, box of biscuits or bag of crisps. Sometimes for a birthday, sometimes for no reason at all. Everyone tucks in, and you stand out if you don't. Peer pressure doesn't stop at school and I have certainly experienced criticism and questioning from those around me for my food choices. It can be tough to stay strong but here are my top tips to avoid the sweet temptations at work.
Have healthy snacks on hand. Stock your drawers with fresh fruit, veggie sticks or homemade energy balls. You can even ask if your colleagues want to chip in to stock a communal fruit basket. It is much easier to turn down that second slice of birthday cake when you know you have a healthy alternative in arms reach.
If your colleagues start to question your healthy eating patterns, don't get defensive or aggressive. Just calmly explain that you're making these choices to benefit your health and that you are truly passionate about looking after your body. Don’t criticise them or force your opinions on them. Just explain what you're doing and why, and ask them to kindly respect your decisions. You never know, you might even encourage them to make healthier choices too.
Make A Team
See if you can rope in a colleague of yours who is also interested in healthy eating. You can scout out the local healthy eateries together or even share meals and snacks. An awesome idea my friend Paul does is Salad Wednesdays. His office buddies all bring in different salads and they share them for their Wednesday lunch. This encourages them all to get creative in the kitchen, and to make nutritious choices.
Be Honest With Yourself
When you're offered a slice of the communal pizza, take a moment to reflect and listen to your body. Are you actually hungry? Or are you just eating the pizza for the sake of it? Try to provide your body with what it actually needs, nourishing wholesome food; rather than what you want, a whole deep pan pizza!
Stick To Your Guns
When your colleagues criticise you, laugh at you or try to bring you down for your choices, don’t waiver. Stick to your guns. Just smile sweetly and shake it off. There is no need to argue or lower yourself to their level by criticising their choices. Just eat your salad and know that what you're doing is ultimately benefiting your health in the long term.
Moderation Not Deprivation
If you really really want a cupcake then have one; just maybe not every single day! Ultimately, life is for living and food is to be enjoyed. Depriving yourself completely of the office treats isn’t necessary for you to reach your goals. You can have little indulgences and still make progress. Balance is key. It encourages a healthy relationship with food and allows you to stick with your healthy lifestyle long into the future.
Let me know any of your tips down in the comments below!