#67: Weight Loss and Birthdays

Love yourself thin

How do you feel about your birthday? Do you look forward to it all year or dread the attention and inevitable weight gain?

There is so much to celebrate about yourself! This podcast episode is all about learning to celebrate ourselves without fighting birthday weight gain. I’m going to share ten ways you can celebrate yourself on your birthday that don’t involve food. Are you ready to change the way you celebrate your birthday? Let’s go!


Weight Loss for Quilters | Weight Loss and Self-Sabotage

If you are ready to lose weight and change the way you think about hunger, sign up for the lifetime access membership for Love Yourself Thin! Doors are open and you can find all the information by clicking here.

What You’ll Learn from this Episode:

  • The importance of knowing that food doesn’t give us feelings
  • How you can change the way you think about celebrating yourself
  • 10 different ways that you can celebrate your birthday without food
  • How to plan out the food you love on your birthday

Listen to the Full Episode:

Featured on the Show:

  • If you are ready to lose weight and change the way you think, sign up for the lifetime access membership for Love Yourself Thin! Doors are open and you can find all the information by clicking here.

Full Episode Transcript:

Dara Tomasson Podcast

67. Weight Loss and Birthdays

Are you one of those people that when your birthday rolls around, you just hide under the sheets? Well this episode is going to be for you, because I’m Dara Tomasson and this is Love Yourself Thin episode 67, Weight Loss and Birthdays.

All right, I have to tell you right off the bat, I love birthdays. I am the third of six kids, and my mom and dad did a great job for birthdays, and it made me feel really special. And so I’ve just continued the tradition of loving my birthday. But I am aware that not all of you are, and so this podcast episode is going to be so helpful for you because I’m going to, look at birthdays in a totally different way, and if you’re listening to this on the day, it’s coming out my birthday’s tomorrow. How fun is that?

All right, so before we go deep into the episode, I of course am going to share a win from Love Yourself Thin just because, that’s so much fun and like, don’t you feel like you’re already connected to these ladies? But I love doing this because I want to show you the example of what’s possible. All of these people that I’m celebrating are just like you, but they have the tools to help them. And I love inspiration. I love being motivated by others. And so this is just some motivation I am giving you because it’s gonna make you feel good.

All right, so talking about birthdays. My client who I wanna highlight today, she just turned 69 and she just spent a month helping her mom move out of her house and babysitting grandkids and being away from her husband, being away from her home and before she started love yourself thin, every time she went back to visit her mom and to see her family she just knew that she was gonna gain 10 pounds, at least 10.

So she’s had a vacation protocol, which is just the way that she eats on vacation, and she’s been able to work with that and Love Yourself Thin to figure out how to do that. And, so she was gone for an entire month, she moved her mother out of her home, got the home ready to sell, got her mom settled in a retirement home and dealing with, you know, her family and all the different dynamics with her siblings and nieces and nephews. And she actually and celebrated her birthday there with her granddaughters, grandkids, and she came home and was down and she’s at her lowest she’s ever been; 80 pounds down.

And the reason I tell you this is because it didn’t happen overnight. She didn’t just get this amazing protocol, vacation protocol. She didn’t just read a book or watch a reel on Instagram and be totally inspired and this is gonna be the change of her life.

Nope. No. She has been every day weighing herself on a scale, connecting with herself, using these tools. She is just consistently showing up for herself. And I’m just so happy for her because as I think about the quality of her life and even the length of her life has definitely been extended when you’re not carrying 80 extra pounds. So, So happy for her.

And if you are listening to this at current time, we are just starting our second cycle of the 90 Day Challenge and you are totally welcome to join us. I will send you the workbook and you will just be amazed at all these little tiny steps and how easy it is to actually change. It’s not as hard as you think, I promise.

All right, let’s go, Let’s go into the episode. Okay. So, again, as a reminder, there’s a really helpful handout and I want you to get the most out of my podcast. When I look at the stats of people watching my podcast, I’m noticing that most people listen to my podcast twice and I’m thinking that they’re doing this by, they listen to me like on a walk or when they’re quilting and then they come back, they print off the sheet and then they listen again and they do it, and that like warms my heart. I love that you’re getting all the value out of the podcast that is available for you because that is why I spend all the time prepping and organizing and doing all of these things for you, because I just know how hard it is to live in a body and to live a life where you feel really disconnected from yourself. And so the fact that listening to this podcast shows me that you’re ready for some change, and I am so happy for you.

All right. So the definition of celebrate, okay, so we’re talking about birthdays and tomorrow I turn 49. And so I’m like legitimately turning 49. Sometimes I get confused if I was turning 50 this year and I would have to do the math. But when you think about birthdays, we all have our own take on birthdays, so I right off the bat, said I love birthdays. And it was just because it was, my mom gave me, that was my special day, and I didn’t have to share it with a sibling. I got to pick the dinner and she always made a black forest cake. And she was really good about birthdays and having friends over.

And my birthday of course, was three days after Halloween. And so even when I was a school teacher, my students would save my favorite chocolate bars and they would, they would give them to me as my birthday present. It was super sweet and so it’s just something that I chose a long time ago that I was going to like. And so I’ve just been reinforcing that I love my birthday and, kind of like what we talked about in episode 64, about weight loss traps, about how our thoughts become our beliefs and then we don’t think about it.

So I just believe that birthdays are awesome and I don’t even like second guess it or anything. But you might not have that experience and that’s okay. And I wanna help you with that. And so this episode, you’re going to think about things in a different way, hopefully. And just like I said also in episode 64, and I’ve talked about in previous episodes about bridging the gap of how do you get from where you are now to where you want to be? And it is a process. Just like my client who’s lost 80 pounds, and traveling, she didn’t lose weight traveling at the beginning. She figured it out, and that is what I’m offering for you too.

Okay, so. The definition of celebrate is to acknowledge a significant or happy day or event with a social gathering or enjoyable activity. So that is the definition of celebrate. Now, I want to have you reflect, how do you celebrate and what do you want to feel when you’re celebrating? So if we go back to the definition, it’s a significant or happy day, and it says with a social gathering or enjoyable activity.

But we can just celebrate ourselves with our own thoughts. Like it doesn’t have to have a social gathering or, you know, maybe this enjoyable activity is just thinking about something, right? Like you can, you can define that how you want.

So then of course the question arises, how does food have anything to do with celebrations? So as I was thinking about this, you know, we have a while ago there was a psychologist that came out with the book, The Five Love Languages. And so these are them; the gifts and tokens of affection, quality time together, physical touch, words of affirmation or acts of service. So there’s five different love languages.

And so just like we are all unique and different, we show our love and devotion to people in different ways. And so I know for me, I really like quality time together. I really like, I actually do a lot of acts of service. That is one of the ways that I feel really good. So if I’m at like an event, I love clearing tables. I love helping clean up the kitchen. I, I love cooking. Like I recently, made dinner for 150 people. And I love doing that. Going to Costco and, and preparing the food and chopping the food and planning it and then executing it. It just, it really fills me up. And other people that would just make them want to like kill over and die. Right?

So we all have different ways of showing love and what I want us to offer to you is that eating a whole bunch of sugar and flour, how does that show yourself that you love yourself? Or how does that acknowledge a significant or happy day or how does that work? And if we were to kind of peel back the onion, so to speak. Think about what was the tradition in your family?

And I have a friend, and so you think about it like, what did you eat? Like my mom always made the same birthday cake. And so that just brings back so many memories and like birthday food and, you know, hot dogs and pizza and ice cream, floats or whatever that is. They say even, they even say it’s like birthday party food.

But it’s interesting, I think about, I have a friend and we were actually pregnant together with our fourth babies and we actually had most of our kids were the same age, and her son, who was a year, was the one before. When we had our babies, we had our babies like within like three weeks of each other or something.

And so her son before that baby, he couldn’t eat food. He just couldn’t eat food. He couldn’t swallow, he couldn’t digest. It was a really big problem because you know this, this little boy is watching everyone else eat around him, and it’s so many of their family celebrations and the things that they did and the topics and the conversations were all centered around food. And this little boy wasn’t allowed to eat food. In fact he would die and there was some definitely close calls of him sneaking food.

So it’s been really interesting for me to think about how do you celebrate without food? How do you connect without food? And if we go to the model, which is one of the main tools that I have in Love Yourself Thin and that I use in my coaching practice, food is just neutral. It’s just a fact. And in fact, food doesn’t give us a feeling. It’s our thought about the feeling. I mean, yes, okay. There is a dopamine, there’s a physical reaction in our body when we eat food, and that’s how we’re wired so that we will continue eating. But like I could say, pizza and some people love it and some people don’t. So even a specific food, or I could say ice cream, and some people could just, they could grab their stomachs and say, oh no, not ice cream. I am lactose intolerant and it just makes me feel terrible. But you think, no, it’s ice cream, It’s Rocky Road because it’s neutral and it’s only our thought about it that creates the emotional response.

So I feel like I’m weaving the story for you and I want to just ask you, you know, when you celebrate your birthday and when you think about weight loss and how if you go to a party and you feel like you have to eat, and if you don’t eat, then you’re not celebrating them. I want you to question that.

So another example that I have thought about is that I don’t drink alcohol. It is a religious, decision that I’ve made. And, so it’s just, I don’t even question if someone ever asked me if I wanted to have a drink of wine or have a beer or whatever that is, if they were to ask me that, it would, I would never think twice about my response. Because it’s always gonna be no thank you.

And I have zero drama about it, like none. And so if I’m in a group of people, I’m at a restaurant and they’re all ordering those things and everyone else is doing it, and I’m not. There’s like no drama in my brain at all. I actually don’t think twice about it. But it’s interesting because members in the program or my clients will say, But like, they made that cake for me, they made that cake, and it’d be so rude if I didn’t eat it. So if someone made wine for me and I didn’t drink it, would that be rude? Right? Like I just really want us to question where we are coming from and just start really loosening up.

And that’s why, episode I keep referencing episodes 65 64, 64 about these traps that we fall into because I wanted you to kind of prep you for the birthday episode because we have birthday traps. We have birthday holiday traps, right? Eating and spending even, and over-consuming and, and so I want you to be really aware that we can just change and we can take care of ourselves. Because the problem is that when you don’t take care of yourself and when you don’t deal with these issues, then when you’re 80 years old or you’re 70 years old and the doctor says you’re going to die early because you are carrying an extra 50 or 80 pounds, we can’t escape that. There actually are consequences to our actions.

And so to learn this process and to start feeling empowered around food, it’s not just a nice thing to do it actually is life saving. Even just talking about, you know, birthday and celebrating and having that pleasure and having that enjoyment, if we are weighing that extra weight, if we are carrying it around with us, we actually aren’t able to be as present or as capable of celebrating because we’ve got the extra weight we have to carry around. We have the, the worry and stress about diabetes or about our heart giving out or whatever that is. So we actually reduce our capacity to feel that, that joy.

So I wanted to, it’s like that, that ball of wool that’s all tangled. I’m, I’m here to help you untangle some of these things that just feel like they’re just the news, like you’re just telling me the news, but I want to emphasize that it doesn’t have to be that way. And so when you learn these mindset tools, you learn that you can reclaim a life that you actually wanna have, and you can change. It’s, it’s totally possible.

So having said that, and, and thinking about those examples, I want you to be able to give you the power back to celebrate yourself. So going back to my original question about, you know, birthdays and celebrating yourself and, and how do you celebrate and how do you wanna celebrate yourself and what are ways that you can celebrate? Oh my goodness, there’s this really funny youTube video about birthdays and how it’s making fun of birthdays and how we sing this song. And, you know, it’s like marking one extra year on the earth. And so now we’re gonna put this hat on you and blow candles and it’s, it’s really quite silly, but it kind of just shows birthdays in a different light.

I’m gonna share 10 different ways and I want you to come up with some of your own that would feel really good of ways that you can take your power back to celebrate yourself, how you want to celebrate yourself. So I’m gonna share them and then I’m gonna have a few other ideas.

So, one of the ways that we can celebrate ourselves, that actually feels good because remember, everything we do in life is because we wanna feel a way, a special way, or feel a certain way. So if we wanna feel special on our birthday, if we wanna feel awesome on our birthday, if we wanna feel acknowledged, what are ways that we can get those feelings?

And so here are some actions that you can take. I love warm sheets. I love clean, warm sheets. Like how nice is that to get into a bed with clean, warm sheets? I remember like giving birth at the hospital and these nurses would come and bring me warm blankets. So every once in a while I’ll just put a blanket in the dryer for 10 minutes and then I’ll just lay on the couch and I’m like, Ooh, this feels so nice, it was so luxurious of me. So that has nothing to do with calories. It has nothing to do with eating a cookie and then having all sorts of regret and then having the aftermath. It’s all about like real pleasure, genuine pleasure.

Another one is guilt-free, creative time. It’s like I’m gonna block off three hours and I’m just going to play and I’m not going to feel guilty about it. I’m just going to, maybe I’ll just like work on something and then if I don’t like it, I’ll just get rid of it. Like, I’ll just be like, Oh, that was just fun playing, I don’t have to feel like I have to finish it. I don’t have to feel guilty about it .If I, if I just wanna play with it and I bring it out every five years. And if I don’t want to, I don’t have to worry about it because it’s just creative time. It doesn’t matter. Right?

We don’t stress out if kids play with a bunch of paper and say, Well, are you gonna make this in two pieces of art that we’re gonna frame are we’re gonna use for the rest of our life? No. We’re like, Oh, this is so cool. This is so fun. I’m glad you had fun playing with this. Like even with kids, we don’t, we don’t take their Play-Doh and then go and, make like a sculpture. So why do we think we have to do that with our quilting projects? You know. We can just have fun just playing with fabric. And if we wanna finish it in a practical, I don’t know, like a table runner or something, if you wanna do that, great. If not, no big deal. It really isn’t.

Okay. Number three, connecting with a friend. Like how does that feel just to phone a friend and be like, Oh my goodness, I haven’t talked to you in forever. How are you? And just laughing and having fun. You know, we have those friends where we haven’t seen them for 20 years, and then we’d start talking. It’s like we had to skip a, skip a beat. It’s so fun.

Number four, spending time with yourself in a way that you enjoy. So maybe there’s like, you really like going to a park and watching birds, but you feel weird that that’s what you like to do. So you just go and do. Or maybe you just really love thrift stores like me, and you love the thrill of the hunt, and you’re like, I’m just gonna go and I’m gonna just see, and I’m not gonna feel guilty and I’m not gonna worry about it. I’m not gonna stress out. It’s gonna be fun. It’s no big deal. Okay.

What about not worrying about others? What if you just say, I’m not gonna worry about anybody else today? I’m actually not going to worry at all. I’m not. I’m actually, I’m not a worrier. I don’t worry anymore. What if that’s like, that just uses a side, like that’s gonna be your birthday present to you. It’s like I just, I’m a person who doesn’t worry. Wouldn’t that be fun? And then you just remind yourself, Oh, that, that’s right. I don’t worry anymore. I just solve problems and I just come to things when they come and then I just work through it. Everything’s figure outable. I don’t worry.

Number five. Uh, sorry, six host a charity project. This is something I’ve done for several years. I will have a potluck at my house. And I organized making pads for, like reusable pads and I sent them away to Africa. It was so fun. I’ve done other service projects, just everyone brings a potluck item and we just put that together and I’ve done it even where they, I just had a potluck for my birthday and because I didn’t have time to organize a charity project and I was like, well, I just wanna connect with people and it’s fun to have other people. I don’t have to cook everything. And it’s always fun to try other people’s food. That’s fun.

Donate your time to a cause you love. What would that be like, just to say, Hey, I’ve always wanted to work on this thing. Or maybe I just, maybe you’re like, I just wanna make a bunch of sandwiches and like take them to a soup kitchen. That sounds fun. And just like, just donate your time.

Another one would be just quilt with a friend or friends and just say, Hey guys, I’m just working on some stuff. Who wants to press? Who wants to rotary cut? Who wants to do this? And then just, just say, hey, we’re gonna do this for a couple hours.

Number nine, measure backwards. So when my husband and I got married, probably for the first 10 years, we would write in each other’s journals and just kind of reflect on the year. And it was a really, really lovely tradition and that would be really fun for you to do on your birthday. And I think that looking back and thinking, wow. I actually have done a lot this year. I’ve really come a long way in my life. There’s a lot of things that, yeah, sure I’d like to keep working on, but there’s a heck of a lot of things that I’ve done and I’m super proud of. So giving yourself that gift.

There’s a great book called The Gap and the Gain and and it talks about measuring backwards and it’s, it was really, really great perspective.

Number 10, take a task you have been procrastinating and make it fun by asking for help. Maybe. asking a friend or even having like a friend come every hour and just say, hey, I’m, I’m working on my garage. I did this last year. I said I’m working on my garage, it would be really fun, really nice if I could have some help. So I had a friend that came on a Saturday morning and we just like went through a whole bunch of stuff. It was super fun and we were able to really knock it out.

And then the other thought I had was, what about just even delegating it out? So if you would just say to yourself, okay, I’m gonna just go through all of my quilt projects. I’m gonna take all my unfinished quilt tops, and I’m going to just take them to a long armer. I’ll just pay her or him for the batting and the back. Because quite a few long armers will have backings available because that takes a whole layer of an extra step of like uncertainty of like, do I have a wide enough back? Is that gonna work? And you just decide, that’s my birthday present to me.

And isn’t that fun to pay that long armer money? Like that’s so much fun and I’m just gonna give that person like just so much like fun work to do. Love it. And then you just take it all and you just like drop it off and it just feels amazing. And then maybe you even just say to Long Armer hey, what do you charge for binding If? If binding is something you hate to do, and then you just give yourself that.

Like, this is how we celebrate ourselves. And you see how as I went through this list, that has nothing to do with cookies or cake or ice cream or going to the dollar store and buying all your favorite candies. And I’m not saying, you know, I, I actually do miss eating those things. I do. I miss licorice all sorts. But if I really miss licorice all sorts, and if I really miss buster bars, guess what I do? I just plan it 24 hours in advance and then I just eat the buster bar and I just eat the licorice all sorts.

And so what this, this client of mine that I celebrated at the beginning of the podcast for her birthday, she planned some snacks. She planned a trip to the ice cream store with her granddaughters. She planned the cake that they were gonna have. Like, she planned all of it. There’s no surprises. And so, and I left out what she said. She goes, she did indulge because she planned to indulge, but she didn’t over indulge. And when she had her planned indulgence, she enjoyed every bite. She didn’t feel guilty, she didn’t feel bad. There was none of that.

And so this is what I’m offering to you, that we can change the way we think about ourselves, about our birthdays, about our way we celebrate, about how do we celebrate our bodies, how do we honor our bodies, how we don’t need to fight science anymore. Because if we keep eating all the things, we can’t stop science. It’s just math. And so when you can change the way you think about it, that’s where you get your power and that is what I’m offering.

It has been so much fun doing this birthday episode with you, and I want to really encourage you to take the time to print off the sheet, work through those questions. Look at those 10 suggestions that I have, and then I’m gonna challenge you. I’m doing it. I wanna, I wanna hear back from you, what you are going to do to celebrate yourself. All right, and then maybe on a further episode I can share that with more people and that love can just keep going.

We are super creative and so enjoy that creativity and embark on that, right? Like embrace it. Like that is who I am. I’m a creative genius and I am gonna use that in my brain, and I’m gonna be so happy for it. All right, You take care everyone.

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