Five Ways Dieters Sabotage Themselves
By Diane Petrella, MSW
Weight loss is challenging enough without getting in your own way. Learn to stop self-sabotage and take charge! Here are five common pitfalls and how to overcome them.
Self-Sabotage #1: You disregard the power of your thoughts and think weight loss happens only through physical effort.
We're conditioned to believe that releasing weight is only about diet and exercise. Of course, that's important. But the thoughts in your mind are just as important as the calories you consume.
Solution: Discover what limiting beliefs hold you back. If you're not sure, listen to your self-talk and how you speak to and react to others. Become aware of fears or doubts that hinder your progress. Learn new strategies to empower yourself with encouraging words.
Self-Sabotage #2: Instead of focusing on your goal, you dwell on being overweight.
Until you shift negative attention away from your current weight, and focus on where you're going, you'll remain stuck. Criticizing yourself keeps you attached to what you don't want. It's like trying to drive forward in your car while still in "park." You're not going anywhere.
Solution: To keep the image of your goal in mind, regularly practice visualization. This helps you create the feeling of excited anticipation of having the body you desire. This new mental model of success gently guides you towards your goal.
Self-Sabotage #3. You punish yourself for setbacks instead of moving on.
Every path to dieting success has its ups and downs. What you perceive as a setback stops your progress only when you think it does.
Solution: Be gentle with yourself. You will make huge strides when you simply say "I'll make a different choice next time" and let it go. Practice self-forgiveness. When you release shame and guilt, minor slips become meaningless.
Self-Sabotage #4: You want to change your body, but don't accept it as it is now.
It may seem strange to think of accepting a body you want to change. But, ironically, what we resist, persists. Remaining at war with your body keeps you stuck and keeps weight on. Being at peace isn't about accepting excess weight, it's about accepting yourself.
Solution: Give your body a daily gift. In doing so you're honoring yourself, and your body. Your gift could be a ten-minute walk, a glass of water, or lotion on your hands. By consciously offering your body daily devotion you're creating a pathway to self-acceptance and self-love.
Self-Sabotage #5: You become discouraged when you don't see immediate results.
Permanent weight loss takes time. Patience is necessary to emotionally grow into the new person you're becoming. Allow inner transformation to happen along with the outer change of reducing pounds. One reason yo-yo dieting is so common is that weight is released but self-sabotaging thoughts are not.
Solution: Even when you don't see visible results, have faith. You are making progress. Recognize that your tendency to find evidence of failure is your fear-based mind trying to discourage you. Hold faith in your heart. Just because you haven't reached your goal yet doesn't mean you won't. You will.
How will you stop sabotaging yourself and move forward?
Diane Petrella, MSW is a psychotherapist and life coach. She offers her clients a spiritual approach to weight loss and helps them develop a loving, respectful relationship with their bodies. Receive a free copy of Diane’s Seven Easy & Effortless Weight Loss Secrets by signing up for her free monthly e-newsletter, Living Lightly, for spiritual insights and tips to release weight with confidence and love. To contact Diane directly visit: www.dianepetrella.com