Every diet and weight-loss strategy has its pros and cons, but for anyone to really work, you’ve got to get your mind right.
“Shifting your mindset about how to lose weight is the biggest factor in losing weight,” says NYC-based therapist Kathryn Smerling. “We can’t shift our weight from the outside without realizing and affirming the correct inner resolve and intention.”
Most people try to lose weight with a bad state of mind: wanting to “fix” themselves. They jump into diets and exercise plans out of self-deprecation, all the while pinching their “trouble” spots, calling themselves “fat” and feeling altogether less-than great. They get obsessed with results, focus on quick fixes and lose sight of sustainability and even their own health.
Fortunately, the mind is a flexible thing. Follow these 10 expert-approved tips to change your mindset and make your weight-loss approach healthier, happier and way more effective:
Rethink Rewards and Punishments
“Keep in mind that making healthy choices is a way of practicing self-care,” says registered dietitian Laura Cipullo, author of “Women’s Health Body Clock Diet.” Food is not a reward, and exercise is not a punishment. They are both ways of caring for your body and helping you feel your best. You deserve both.
Identify Your ‘Trouble Thoughts’
Identify the thoughts that get you into trouble and work to stop and change them. Maybe it’s your internal dialogue when you look into the mirror. Or cravings when you get stressed. Consciously make them stop by saying ‘stop’ out loud.
It might sound silly, but that simple action will break your chain of thought and allow yourself the opportunity to introduce a new, healthier one. The best way to do this is to count from one to 100 as many times as you need until the destructive thoughts subside.
Talk to Yourself Like You Would a Friend
When it comes to ideals of beauty and body image, we are incredibly hard on ourselves. The standards we adopt for ourselves are punishing. And we’d never hold our friends or loved ones to many of those standards. You deserve the same respect and compassion as anyone else; treat yourself like it.
Change Your Goals
Losing weight might be a result, but it shouldn’t be the goal. Rather, your goals should small, sustainable things over which you have full control. Did you eat five servings of fruits and veggies today? There’s one goal met. What about eight hours of sleep; did you get them in? If so, you can check another goal off of your list.
image couresy: dietdoctor.com.