Hey Folks! We're excited to introduce Certified 21DSD Coach Mike Nguyen. Mike kicks off a series of articles contributed by our 21DSD Certified Coaches. Enjoy! – Diane and Team
Congratulations for finding your way here and for deciding to implement a new strategy of achieving optimal health and ridding sugar from your life.
As a Certified 21-Day Sugar Detox Coach, I’ve compiled some recent thoughts on various levels or stages of the detox. I’d like to share some motivational morsels (no pun intended) on these junctures in hopes that you’ll find some inspirational words that resonate with you, creating a 3-week worthy and most valuable experience even if at times you may feel otherwise.
First off, remember that you’ve already taken the initial steps to research this program and learn more about how sugar can be detrimental to your health. Deciding to prioritize your health and the needs of your body is a crucial component to laying the foundation for a healthy future. Take a second to acknowledge this moment as a time in your life where you are ready to embrace change and all that comes with the 3-week experiment whether it is positive or negative, easy or difficult. Knowing that change is necessary to initiate a new stage in your health and accepting this first step with open arms will make your detox experience much easier and meaningful.
Breaking Old Habits
After accepting the initial “challenge of change,” the willingness to let go of old habits should follow suit. During this stage, know that you’re not alone in your struggle to rid old patterns and eradicate addictions (in this case sugar in any form) AND to mold new ones. It definitely can be a daunting task, especially if your habit is an old one that has carried with you for most of your life. However, do not let that dictate your future detoxed-self and the change that you have committed to and promised yourself you’d honor. Forming new habits takes time and the 21 days is just the beginning of hopefully a fresh, healthy mindset and lifestyle. Reminding yourself how you feel mentally and physically while indulging in bad eating habits and maybe even journaling are two ways to document your journey and help keep you on track during this phase.
Learning to Let Go of Perfectionism
Lastly, learning to accept your flaws, mistakes, cheats, and so-called “weaknesses” and move on with a focused, clean-slate mentality will enable you to tackle the detox with positivity and an open-mind. Following the detox by the book will of course yield the best results, but when you stumble and find yourself in a situation where you’ve fallen off the wagon, simply pick yourself up and treat your next snack or meal as a new opportunity to make wise food decisions. No one person is perfect and obsessing over whether or not you did everything 100% correctly will add more stress to your plate. Give it your very best attention and effort and be kind to yourself when and if you have a slip-up.
A Better Version of You
I’ll leave you with some last words of encouragement to guide you along your journey.
Give yourself some due credit for taking on this challenge. You’ve taken action and that is quite significant! Some sit and ponder initiating changes to their diets, exercise plans, and life habits, but thinking is not the same as doing. Accept the challenge and be open to new ways of looking at and thinking about food. Do realize that you might not like something the first or second time you try it, but that’s all part of the learning process.
And last, be kind to yourself. You may find others in your life may not quite understand why you’re partaking in this challenge. Or you may find yourself comparing your results to other 21-Day Sugar Detox participants or others taking on other food elimination challenges, diets or programs. Be happy for other participants’ success stories but not to the detriment of your own mental state and esteem. Despite what you may think at times, you’re making strides in the right direction. Know that with a patient attitude and desire to inch your health forward one step at a time, you’ll be that new version of you soon enough.
Mike holds a bachelor’s degree in Health Studies from Boston University and Nutrition Consultant & Educator certifications from Bauman College in Berkeley, CA. He consults one-on-one with clients as a holistic nutritionist in person or via Skype and also offers group coaching and support for the 21-Day Sugar Detox program. He lives in San Francisco, CA. If you enjoyed this post, check out more like it on his blog at: chewgoodstuff.com