My clients who lose weight and maintain it understand the mental shift and recognize how much easier it is, almost effortless. They chuckle about decades of dieting, feeling so frustrated and defeated while reporting that “this way is so easy and natural.”
This might sound crazy to you but I hear it all the time. In order to maintain weight loss, we have to live a healthy lifestyle which means we cannot go on a diet. Dieting works, but it is short term and the consequences are detrimental such as slowing down metabolism, creating eating disorders, and deteriorating self-esteem.
If you want a healthy lifestyle, you have to change your relationship with food. First, it has to be enjoyable. If your actions are not enjoyable, you will quit. Eat things that tastes good, exercises that feel good, etc. Don’t just push your body. Find self-compassion, self-love.
You have to also change your mindset. Learn to shift from a fixed to a growth mindset. This means that you stop believing you are the problem, that you cannot lose weight, that you are innately a certain way. Instead, you can overcome obstacles with perseverance, baby step changes, and acknowledging that setbacks are OK. It’s a part of growing. What can you do differently next time? What factors need to change? You are flexible, not rigid. (Recommendation on the side: read “Mindset – The New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck.)
Awareness is also important. Be aware of your mental state. If you’re tired, cranky, and hungry before a meal, convenience always wins. How do you set up your day and your environment so that you want to choose to shop, prep, and cook that healthy meal that will make you want to repeat this? And repeating over time, with joy, becomes a habit.
So stop torturing yourself. Stop the daily dieting struggle of counting calories. Stop dieting! Please, find the joy in life, find the habits you will sustain. Your life is waiting for you to thrive (not sit back in defeat). If you would like support, call me.
If you need help understanding nutrition and all the mixed messages out there, give us a call. We will address your stress level, diet, exercise, cravings, emotional eating and overall health and happiness. Start with a free health consultation at www.HappyFoodHealth.com or (619) 876-2655. See if this is the right match for you. I do things very differently to make health a natural lifestyle and this is not for everyone. Check out Yelp for other people’s opinion of Happy Food.
~ Samantha Hua, Nutrition & Holisitc Health Coach, San Diego, CA