Being overweight is no fun. You dont look as good in clothes, you hate the site of those extra bulges, your energy is in the doldrums and your self-esteem is joining it.
On the flip side, losing weight is exciting. You start to look better, feel better and have renewed energy. Your self-esteem gets a boost and you may notice another interesting phenomenon. Is it your imagination or are people actually responding to you more positively? Total strangers seem to smile at you out of the blue. People do little favors for you, like the saleslady who slips a perfume sample into your bag. Getting dressed in the morning is a pleasure. Its quite remarkable, you reflect, how this positive feeling carries on throughout your day.
So why do so many of us sabotage our weight loss efforts? There are myriad reasons and everyone has different behavior drivers. But its our mindset thats really at the master controls. Lets take a look at how we can tune it up and get it working for us, instead of against us.
1. Belief: We need to really, really believe that we can reach our weight loss goals. What seems on the outside to be a lack of discipline or willpower, is really a lack of belief that we can regain a toned, slim body. To bolster belief, we need to flood our mind with conviction. Use images of a slimmer you, or before and after shots of others you can relate to (age, weight) who were successful in dropping those pounds. Practice positive self-talk. Visualize the new you often. Yes become obsessed. You have a lot of negativity to counteract!
2. Awareness: So much of our mindset is on auto-pilot. We have deeply ingrained behaviors that drive our actions without our even thinking about them. This includes how, what, when and why we eat the way we do. Just by getting in touch with our unconscious assumptions we can change these habits of mind.
For example, ask yourself what you are assuming your day will be like. Did you have an unconscious assumption that it would be average? Why not set a new assumption? Tell yourself: I will be amazing today. I will make myself proud all day long. This will include not just your food choices, but how you interact with people and accomplish tasks. Setting the bar higher will have a positive impact on your self-esteem, which in turn will impact in smart eating.
Check your assumptions all day long. Then chuck the ones that dont jibe with your empowered new self. As you become more aware of your assumptions and replace them with better ones, youll be more in control of your mindset. This will serve you not just in your weight loss goals but in all areas of your life.
3. Mastery: This is a great word. It makes you feel more powerful just contemplating it. Think of the small child who says proudly: I am the boss of me! Well you are the Master of You! You are the one who is in control of your weight loss. No one decides how big a portion you will eat. You decide. That bag of popcorn at the movies does not have to be totally consumed. Someone else designed the bag size. Someone else decided you should have two halves of a bun on a hamburger. But you can decide to have half of the bun and eat the burger with a knife and fork. You get the idea. No one can sabotage your goals for a slimmer you. Close your eyes and contemplate all the ways you can be the master creator of your new body.
The above ideas will take some practice. They involve a shift in mindset, a taking of control, and a new perspective on this business of losing weight. You will be successful you just have to set your mind to it literally!