How many times have you started a diet and you were doing so good and then something happened that bounced you off the turnip truck, went off the rails, or you fell off the wagon and then decided you’d start to tomorrow…but tomorrow never came? Either a special event came up, someone brought your favorite cookies to work, or you were just too tired to make something healthy that night? I have. Many times! I always felt I had a good reason, at the time, but I never stopped to think about my reasons for starting the diet in the first place. Or it was too superficial of a reason for me so it didn’t keep me in the game until I won. Here are some of the my reasons that I later chalked up to big mistakes that I learned on my journey to losing over 100 pounds.
Thinking you’ll be happier after you’ve lost the weight. I can remember when I started my weight loss journey I would dream of how much better life would be once I hit my goal weight. Like all the pieces in life would just fall into place and all my problems would melt away. The fact is, although some things are better, I’m no happier today than when I started. Yes, things are physically easier, but life has offered new ways for me to feel the 50-50. There will always be good things in my life and there will always be challenging things. The best news is, you don’t have to wait to lose the weight to be happy! That’s a feeling you can stop chasing and feel it today.
Thinking you’ll stick with it longer if you hate the way you look. Isn’t it fascinating how we think hate will motivate? When was the last time you wanted to do anything for someone who was hating on you? I hated the way I looked. I couldn’t stand looking at pictures of me, but now when seeing myself 100 pounds ago, I can’t help but feel compassion. Compassion for that past person and the past body she lived in. The reason I yo-yoed so much was because I’d “mess up” and then start on a downward spiral of guilt and self loathing. If you do lose all the weight you want, you may choose to think differently about your body, but if you don’t learn to love yourself, you’ll find something else to beat yourself up about.
Believing there’s a perfect time to start a diet. How many times were you going to start a diet and thought to yourself, “I’d like to, but it’s not the right time.” Or, “I have too much going on right now and can’t.” Thinking this is always optional. Which means another option could be, “I’d like to and it’s the perfect time,” or “I have a lot going on, but I’ll figure out how to make it work.” What would be the perfect time and what’s happening with your body while you’re waiting?
Health for the mind and the body is a lifelong adventure. Starting to take baby steps now lets you at least be in the game instead of sitting on the sidelines wishing it were different. Small steps daily equal great distances in your future.
Maybe you thought this post would be about foods to avoid or exercises to do, but are those the things that end up causing you to quit? They are important, but figuring out your beliefs around your body and diets are key to lasting success. Especially if you’ve been on the lose-gain-lose-gain weight train like me. Consider how you are treating yourself. Your potential is limited when you get stuck on ideas like, “I can’t be happy and fat” or “there’s only one way to look good.” What you think about yourself today matters. What you do for yourself today matters. Even if you have to start small and baby step your way to the finish line, each day you are becoming a better version of yourself.
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examples on my podcast here.