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coming back after you’ve fallen off with real food

in this post we’ll give you our best advice for getting back on track after falling off, whether it was one event or an extended period of time.

what does falling off mean?

  • too much “approved” stuff made with the right ingredients.  this can be a slippery slope for many of us!
  • too many carbs in the evening.  even if from the right sources, if we’re not measuring out our carbs and overdoing starches and fruits and sugars, we could feel suboptimal.
  • going off plan eating things that are NOT approved.

when we say “fallen off” this implies that you are off right now and want to get back on!  so whether it’s been 1 meal, 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, or longer, if you’re off you’re off!  and you need to get back on.  we want to help.

scroll down for recommended reading and resources associated with this episode.


you’re not alone.

  • everyone does it.  no one is ever perfect.   it’s usually relative to where we are our your journey.  earlier in our journey, we tend to go off worse and more often than later.
  • going off contributes to your learning, wisdom, and evolution.  we must have ebbs and flows, ups and downs, ins and outs.  this is where all the learning and resilience happens.  every time we go off and come back, we are strengthening our capacity to come back, and more than likely, we stay “on it” longer and longer.
  • contrast clarifies.  we all need contrast between what we want to be doing and how we want to feel, contrasted with what we are doing and how we feel in our suboptimal moment(s).  contrast clarifies what we want and where we want to be.  when you are suboptimal, you get clear on what you don’t want, and what you want instead.  this is powerful.


remember our values.

some of our values are very relevant to falling off and coming back.  for a refresher on our values, watch or listen to this post / podcast.

  • freedom.  freedom from neurosis.  freedom from being too strict.  freedom from being hard on ourselves, especially when we fall off.
  • we accept everyone.  especially those who feel lost, confused, and cast out.  especially when we fall off!
  • simplicity & elegance.  part of simplicity and elegance is allowing for these ups an downs without judgment, understanding it’s part of the process.
  • we always put ourselves and our personal health first.  we make ourselves a priority.  a better us is better for anything and everything we want to contribute to in our lives.  we cannot sacrifice our health to make others happy.
  • constant learning and experimentation.  part of learning and experimenting is allowing ourselves to fall off and learn from our suboptimal moments.  which over time leads to a personalized way of doing things, within the general guidelines of the SHT, which leads to honed intuition.
  • it’s about the journey and enjoying the process.  there is never a final destination, there will never be a time when we are “there” or “done.”  there will never be a time when we are perfect and don’t need to work on this.
  • patience, love and kindness to ourselves and everyone else as we all figure all this out.  
  • we are all about making this work in a modern lifestyle.  part of making this work in a modern lifestyle includes understanding that our modern lifestyle may make it difficult to implement new habits.  it’s all good.
  • there is only feedback.  there is no such thing as failure.  we strive for optimal and learn from imperfection.  we either get what we are looking for, or we get feedback that helps us change course in order to get what we are looking for.  every time we come back we are strengthening our capacity to come back!  we continue to get better at it, and we stay there longer!
  • better is better.  even if it’s just a little bit better.


here’s what to do.

1) acknowledge it.  accept it.  and learn from it.

sit down and think for a moment – when did this first happen?  what was the situation that led to the cascade of events that got you here?  where was it?  when did it happen?  is this something that may happen in the future that you can somewhat predict and plan for?

honesty with ourselves is one of the keys to progress.  we must stop rationalizing, get real and be honest about where we are, how we feel, where we fell off, and what we need to do to get better.


2) do a little emotional damage control.

it’s difficult when we are in the funk, in the fog, feeling off, to have positive conversations.  but this is exactly what we must do.  this is where the deep work comes.  it’s easy to be positive and happy when everything is going our way and we’re feeling great.  we need to carry that with us into the darker moments.

  • I cannot unlearn what I’ve learned.
  • I’m only one meal away from being right back on it.
  • real food combined with nurturing natural space in between meals works wonders.
  • I’m only a couple of days away from feeling like myself again.
  • I am building a cumulative strength, capacity, wisdom, and evolution as I learn from this process.
  • every time I catch myself in this funk and make the decision to come back, I’m strengthening my capacity to come back.
  • every decision I make can be a vote for the version of my self I want to be.
  • download our coming back forms which include each one of these statements as an 8.5 x 11 document that you can print and hang up in your home and workplace.


3) think about what you want and visualize it.

anytime we want to do anything we have to see it first.  it’s the way we work.  to be successful with getting back on it, we have to see ourselves doing it, and feeling how good it feels to be back on it.  this plants the seed to do the right thing at the right time.  just like visualizing a perfect squat helps facilitate doing a perfect squat when we actually do it, visualizing yourself doing the right thing, and imagining how it feels, facilitates it.  once we see it and feel it enough, we’ve planted the seed for it, and it is inevitable that we will do move in the direction of doing what we continue to see on a regular basis.

  • map out an ideal day using our “perfect day” template.  include your “hot spots.”  describe how you feel as you go through each moment of the day.
  • use the week, month, and quarterly calendar to map out hot spots and plan for upcoming events.  mark them in the calendar and make some notes about what you can do to prepare OR allow yourself the flexibility to indulge.
  • download our coming back forms which includes our “my perfect day” and “weekly and monthly hotspot calendar.”


4) address your personal areas of concern.

  • set your home and workplace up for success.  make sure you have nothing laying out!  we are wired to eat!
  • workplace temptations?  plan to avoid the break room or the snack room!
  • family and friends?  have a difficult conversation with the people you spend time with!  let them know, it’s nothing personal, but you are trying to do what feels right and what is good for you.  you can still show up to events and get-togethers without eating junk!  or maybe you just need to avoid those things altogether?
  • being alone?  try embracing the space!  many people are caught up in relationships and partnerships that don’t allow them to enjoy time on their own.  try to find some rituals associated with your time alone.  cooking while listening to your favorite music and having a glass of wine can be therapeutic.
  • cooking vs convenience?  fall in love with cooking again!  when you cook for yourself, you’re nourishing yourself.  it’s worth taking the time to prepare your own food because this is what nourishes you!



5) other considerations.

  • habit takes repetition.  going off and coming strengthens your capacity to come back in the future.  every meal you get right strengthens your habit of getting it right!
  • consider habit stacking.  stack eating real food with a habit you already do.  make eating real food prerequisite to your other habit.
  • meditate.  consider apps such as 10% HappierSam Harris’ Waking Up, or our favorite our meditation playlist here (watch in order).  regular meditation will help you “catch” urges and be more present with your choices.
  • be sure to exercise.  fitness combined with real food is extremely synergistic and makes you feel good about yourself.
  • practice love and kindness to yourself.
  • reaching out to a friend, a group of friends, the SHT community, me, us, or any of the tribe members.


remember to download our coming back forms.  they are from the heart and we know they can help.


if you have any feedback or points we can use to make this better, please contact us.

Paul C. Tijerina

Paul C. Tijerina | BS MFT CPT NLP | Nutritional Therapist & ATAVIST Life Coach