All the experts say different things: cut out carbs, don’t eat anything processed, use ideal combinations of food, limit food after 7 pm, incorporate more fat, never eat sugar, go on this detox, try this 10-day cleanse, etc. (If you missed my blog talking about letting go of dieting, get it here!)
And believe me, I’ve tried them all. Because for about 12 years of my life, all I wanted was to lose the weight that I kept gaining (and losing and gaining again).
For so long, I operated out of this state of desperation; when I lost the weight, I was ecstatic. Yet, I lived in this perpetual fear that the pounds would pile back on, so I constantly monitoring, thinking about it, and obsessing over it.
But when you look at weight loss in a different light, it really is MORE than just losing those last 15 pounds. (tweet that!)
How many times have you gained and lost the same 10, 20, 30 pounds over the years? (*I’m raising my hand to say “over and over and over again!”)
In order to truly resolve “weight issues”, we have to take a different perspective.
The weight loss I’m talking about is MORE than just losing the weight and fitting into your skinny jeans.
What I’m talking about is resolving all of the baggage underneath the weight: changing your beliefs, learning to cope with emotionally tough situations, being in discomfort, balancing your blood sugar, and all of the “stuff” behind bringing your body back into balance.
Because when your body is in balanced on all levels-physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, THAT is when weight loss occurs. Not the “oh I can fit into this slinky dress for the wedding” weight loss, but the LASTING kind.
The kind where you don’t have to try so hard, put in so much effort, and punish yourself to get where you want to go.
The kind where it “just happens” because our bodies are meant to be at a natural, comfortable weight for our body type.
So, how DO we lose weight and keep it off? The answer may not be what you think.
The one thing all of the weight loss programs out there are missing is this: they don’t promise LASTING weight loss. They expect you to fail, to come back, and to use their services again. Hello, profitable, million dollar business!
Weight Watchers? Their commercials act like you’re old friends, and they want you to come back with this new deal (precisely-it’s designed to keep you failing, then coming back)
Meal Plans? You have to follow it exactly to lose weight, then you go off, gain weight, then need to use the meal plans again.
Diet Pills? Well, once you pop, you really can’t stop.
With any of these “lose the weight quick” programs-Jenny Craig, laxatives, Slimgenics, etc, the idea is that you have to KEEP using the program, the service, the whatever. Yes, you may lose weight. But then you transition back to “real life” and inevitably gain it back.
So, the key to lasting weight loss is twofold
1. You must go deeper.
Lasting weight loss is never about the outside. Yes, of course, we all want to look good and be at our ideal weight. But it’s not about following an exact food plan, counting calories until we’re blue in the face, and adhering to some strict regime so we force the weight off.
True body balance comes from the inside. It’s about bringing your body back into a state of balance, so it naturally releases weight. (tweet that!)
Not from punishment, force, and will-power, but from caring enough about yourself, about what works for your body, and about taking care of your needs, that your body effortlessly releases its excess weight.
Our bodies WANT to be at a weight where we feel comfortable. Look at societies around the world (especially ancient civilizations!)…they don’t have Weight Watchers, diet programs, and obesity problems. They know how to work with their bodies so they feed it, nourish it, and take care of it at the weight it’s meant to be.
So, go deeper into your beliefs, examine WHY you’re trapped in the diet cycle, see where you’re stuck and why you aren’t moving forward. It’s only by going deeper, by looking at what’s behind all the “weight stuff”, that brings about lasting change.
2. You have to care MORE about something else than you do about losing weight.
When you’re obsessed with losing weight, when it consumes your life, and when it’s all you think about, you will never achieve lasting weight loss. Trust me, I have been there. It NEVER lasted.
When you let go of the fight, even just a little bit, THAT’S when change begins to happen.
Think about it: how many times have you heard about when someone wasn’t looking for love, that’s when they found it? Or when they surrendered and gave up on what they so desperately wanted, that’s when they got it?
It is the same with weight loss.
We don’t get anywhere from pushing, resisting, forcing, and punishing. When we are constantly fighting our bodies, battling ourselves, hating what we see in the mirror, and living in a state of being exhausted from the fight, that’s the signal that we must shift gears.
Find something that matters more to you than being thin. I’m not saying you can’t care about your body, your health, and your weight. I’m saying it can’t be an all-consuming, obsessive fight that you’re battling every day. When you change your focus to something else, when you care more about your life, something amazing happens…
For me, a big shift happened when I moved to Colorado. It wasn’t a conscious choice, but after I moved, I began focusing on other things: hiking, camping, exploring this amazing state, finding a job, starting a business, making friends, and taking part in activities I loved.
For one of the first times in my life, I didn’t care so much about my weight. And what shocked me is that I DID release weight, effortlessly and easily.
I’m not recommending you move to another state :), but I want you to find something that you can care about MORE than you being obsessed with losing weight.
What brings you out of yourself? What allows you to focus on something else? Maybe it’s getting back into dance classes, trying a new craft, exploring cool museums in your town, working on being more “present” in your life, or starting a book club.
I don’t care what it is-care more about ANYTHING-God, your mom, your kid, watching comedies, writing a book-something that allows your to shift your focus out of that all-consuming, obsessive desire to lose weight.
Because when you start to care less about your weight and body, when you let go and surrender even for just a day, that initial shift begins to happen.
I know we all want to feel at ease in our bodies, comfortable with our weight, and in love with ourselves. When we begin to go deeper, shifting our focus onto finding something we care more about, and releasing some of the fight, we begin to bring our weight and bodies back into balance.
So, tell me-which step most resonates with you? I’d love to hear what else YOU are interested in focusing on. Share in the comments below.