Most people can relate to work being a hot bed of food eating issues. You've got the co-worker who can be saboteur of your best laid healthy eating plans tempting you with whatever they baked at home. You've got the join the group in crap food or don't fit in thing. And the classic, the birthday party piece of often store bought birthday cake that really isn't that good to begin with.
Ever been at yet another office birthday party or celebration and get shit for not taking a piece of cake. Well one of my clients relatively new to a company just told me the story of the big cake refusal drama. She refused cake and a beer at work today and people made a HUGE stink about it. It's just cake for goodness sakes. Or is it just cake. Maybe refusing the cake is a way of rejecting being a part of the group. Maybe the cake is like the corporate kool aid. Failing to take the kool aid marks you. Does she really want to be a part of the 'community' we're trying to build here.
The Urban Warrior group tonight brainstormed about strategies on how to deal with the totally unnecessary peer pressure and empty calories associated with the piece of cake and came up with some awesome strategies I thought many of you would love to hear:
1) Take the cake. Don't refuse it. Take a couple bites and throw out the rest when people aren't looking.
2) Take the cake and hold it for a while. Then when you go back to your desk, take it with you and say you're going to eat it there. Then ditch it discretely.
3) Don't take the cake and explain that you've invested a lot of time and money into yourself but if they provided a fruit tray next time they could totally count you in.
4) Don't take the cake and explain how hard you've been working out and that given how much suffering you're putting into your workouts, you don't want to have it be for nothing. Even invite them along with you so that they can be the one refusing this time.
The cake refusal is the big deal in all of this though. The act of accepting it alone will let you off the hook most of the time. The eating of the cake isn't such a big deal. If you don't draw attention to yourself in the first place, you won't get marked as the non kool aid drinker. If you're discreet and politely accept the offering, you'll still be seen as participating in whatever celebration is happening. Simple and smart ideas. Love those Urban Warriors.