It feels like everywhere we look there’s a magazine with a diet on the front cover or a new fad diet (can you say Keto, Paleo or Shape Magazine?)
While the support of food plans are helpful they are NOT a magic bullet for obesity, eating disorders, and food addiction.
The REASONS we overeat, under eat, or otherwise hurt ourselves with food won’t be fixed if we just cut out carbs for two weeks.
We collectively need to really look at WHY we use food beyond what our stomach needs.
The real answer lies in finding the compassion and self-love to treat ourselves and our bodies well.
Like other professionals in my field, I can share a million “tips” about the mechanisms of losing weight, but the most important part of my personal weight loss story came after I lost 100 pounds (I had been dangerously obese since my teens). After releasing the weight, I had to take an honest look at how I felt – and I found a lack of DECISIVENESS still clinging to me.
That was where my real healing began. That type of deep introspection must happen in order to clear away the clutter and begin and/or sustain a weight loss effort.
We have to love ourselves enough to face the demons that hold us back. @laurafenamore (Click to Tweet!)
The truth is that NOT making decisions is a form of fear.
From the big things, like new jobs and new loves, to the small things, like redecorating – decisions mean that something will change.
If you’re on a journey to release excess weight, either for the first time or the hundredth, that decision needs to begin and be empowered by changing your mind.
If you follow these three acts of self-love and keep your heart open to the possibility of good things, the possibilities are endless.
Tip #1 You are PERFECT. So how do we begin to face indecisiveness and change our minds? We start with one simple and enormously powerful truth: You are wonderful, right now, exactly as you are. How can I be perfect AND need to change, you ask? Well that, Virginia, is the miracle. We ALL need to change. It is the human condition. But we are all also perfect. Perfectly imperfect. The universe says so. Love says so. We only need to lay doubt and fear aside and be empowered forward.
Tip #2 Choose and Rechoose. If you’re ready to grab the power to move forward, you must know that it’s a “choose and rechoose” decision. Life will get in your way – meetings, weather and free donuts at the office. You must commit to putting aside indecision every single morning (and maybe a hundred times a day). You must remove it like an old coat. You must be committed to that ONE action to begin changing your mind. Whenever you feel your commitment wavering, close your eyes and imagine you are in a heavy, itchy old wool coat. Now slowly, gently, take off the coat. Now stand up where you are, in real life, and stretch. You are freed from indecision EVERY time you do this exercise and do ONE thing to move forward – eat an apple, take a walk/hike with the Sierra Club for example or call a friend for support.
Tip #3 Make a Decision to Get (and Give) Support – NO EXCUSES! Even if you can’t afford a gym, walking is free! Look into a club to surround yourself with other motivated people. If you can’t afford a personal body image/weight release coach, you may be able to afford a telecourse or a group seminar with one. Try my programs on for size. If you can’t find an hour a day to exercise, you CAN steal three ten or fifteen minute intervals to do jumping jacks in the break room or walk around your block three times. Healing is definitely not one-size-fits-all, but there IS a perfect solution just for you – IF you claim it.
The United States, my home, has the highest level of overweight people in any place at any time in history. I know first-hand how demoralizing it feels to be fat and hate my body – I have lived that way.
Today I make food choices that promote my health and I use food as medicine for my body. That does not mean it is not comforting and yummy, it just means that it is not the ultimate comforter and lover. Believe me, this way makes life so much sweeter. Know that you are perfect and have all the POWER you need to change.
Have a heart – embrace your potential for happiness and health by starting with changing your mind.
What do you think about these tools? Please comment below.
And what step are you taking today to change your mind and heal your relationship with your body?
Laura Fenamore, Body Image Expert, Coach and acclaimed Author is on a mission to help women around the world end the constant battle with their bodies and start adoring who they see in the mirror. Her approach walks students and readers through the heartfelt journey to self-love at any size or age by unlocking the secrets to a lifetime of emotional, physical and spiritual health. After overcoming a lifelong battle with addiction, obesity, and eating disorders, Laura released 100 pounds – keeping it off for more than 28 years. She chronicles this journey to self-love and health in her widely acclaimed book, Skinny, Fat, Perfect: Love Who You See in the Mirror. Learn more about Laura’s programs, or invite her to speak by visiting SkinnyFatPertect.com.
Image courtesy of Simon Robben.