Justification through Tradition

We’ve all done it. A holiday approaches, such as Thanksgiving, and we find ourselves justifying an over-indulgence in foods or sedentary activity. We are tempted to defend this binge on all things unhealthy by telling ourselves “One indulgence isn’t a big deal” or “Well, I don’t eat like this all the time”, and my favorite: “It’s tradition!”. On the surface, these inner-thoughts are fairly harmless. However, if we’re being honest, most of us spend much of our time indulging when we should be with-holding, or sitting when we should be moving.

The thought that giving in to each temptation because it’s just “one time” of the year, or because tradition mandates it is, unfortunately, unfounded. Why do so many of us add pounds over the course of a year instead of shedding them? Well, we convince ourselves time and time again that “this one time won’t hurt”. We continue to justify eating things or drinking things because of the “tradition” of the occasion. The holidays just compound the problem.

Having said all that, I propose a challenge: Break tradition. Alter a recipe; limit your portions; resist your temptations. I’m going beyond the holidays with this idea. Be progressive THROUGHOUT the year, and you’ll be in a better position to enjoy a bit more during the holidays. If you really want to make a difference in your life, though, take these ideas into the holidays as well. Invite your family along with you – drag them if you must. I DARE you.

I’ll leave you all with one of my favorite quotes: “Tradition – Just because you’ve always done it that way doesn’t mean it’s not incredibly stupid.”

I’m not attacking anyone’s intelligence, so please overlook the use of “stupid” above. Focus on the overall idea –  I want you to think about those traditions you use as a defense for unhealthy decisions. They might not hold as much weight as you want to believe.

Have a wonderful holiday season!

Coach Joel