How To Turn Lapses Into Successes – Cheryl Brown

Okay, I said I’d report back on how the juicing was going. I meant to do it at the end of the week but I have something to report.

I lapsed. On day two.

This is how it happened: we were out for the afternoon and evening, and although I’d prepared extra juice and had it with me in a flask, it wasn’t enough and I got hungry. Three juices a day really isn’t enough to sustain you. A beginner’s mistake really – what was I thinking?

We were with friends in the tea house and some of them were eating. I watched them savouring their meals and I resisted it all. Mr S was aware that I was struggling in the jaws of temptation, and, bless him, he was willing to forego his dinner to support me. I wasn’t going to let him go hungry on my account, so I insisted he order something.

You know the rest. I ate half of his, then ordered more. A few years ago, I would have given myself a really hard time for this. As I said in my previous post, I’m an all-or-nothing kind of person and to do less than 100% would have felt like I’d let myself down.

I didn’t let myself down. What I did was to eat some Thai green curry. That is all. Except to say that I enjoyed it. I love food and I wasn’t going to diminish that glorious pleasure by feeling guilty. It was, after all, the only occasion on which I would eat this week and to ruin my own enjoyment of it… well, that would have been letting myself down.

Whatever you’ve committed yourself to achieving – whatever you’ve resolved to do – the occasional slip is fine as long as it is occasional. You’re allowed to forgive yourself and move on. In fact, don’t bother to forgive yourself because there’s nothing to forgive. If on one occasion you didn’t do something you said you’d do, and nobody has actually suffered for that, then what’s the problem?

I’m sure that part of the reason that most New Year resolutions fail is because people give themselves a hard time for inevitable lapses. They miss one gym visit or have one bar of chocolate, believe that they’ve failed and then feel bad about themselves. If you feel bad about yourself, are you going to succeed? Well, maybe, but it’s so much easier when you feel good.

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