By: Dr. Kim Feinstein, Psy.D.
You made your New Year’s resolution to lose weight. Starting with enthusiasm, meal prepping, increasing your water intake, exercise, and trying to avoid the temptations that seemed to lurk around every corner.
Right now, you’re probably very committed to reaching your goals and ready to make the changes! However, as the weeks and months progress, frustration sometimes sets in and your motivation can start to diminish. Weight loss efforts can be time consuming and tedious, and straining. Over time, you might even start to give into temptations, causing yourself to get off track and stay off track. “I’ll start over again tomorrow” can turn into “I’ll start next week, month, etc.….”
Sadly, this is a common cycle. In fact, research demonstrates by the second week of February, 80 percent of those with weight loss resolutions face the remorse of disappointment as they failed to achieve their goals.
Every time you relapse on your healthy journey, you have two choices:
- To keep walking backwards, which will surely take you even further away from your goals.
- Accept your lack of perfection as normal and forgivable, and take not one, but two positive steps down the path that brings you closer to the body and further you want.
Instead of walking backwards and waiting for tomorrow, next Monday, or next month to overhaul your habits, start TODAY.
Face the consequences Let’s face it, you probably stopped weighing yourself once your indulgences began. So, now is the time to step on that scale and face the potential damage you did.
Don’t beat yourself up It happens! The damage is already done, so stop beating yourself up. In fact, research indicates that beating yourself up about past behavior is not effective or motivating. Calling yourself fat, disgusting, a failure, and/or other nasty names is truly a recipe for overeating and continued weight gain.
Press your reset button Now is the time to take a deep breath, relax, and press your reset button! Think of the image of a big red button inside your mind and picture yourself pressing it. You are now “re-booting” and starting your weight loss journey once again.
Change your self-talk I encourage you to begin to change your self-talk by being present and catching yourself next time you start the shame spiral. Picture a stop sign or a traffic light and stop your thoughts! Begin to replace them with self-compassionate thoughts that make you feel more enthusiastic, motivated, and inspired. Some examples include: “Today is a new day”, “I can start over today”, “I am capable of losing weight.” “I am back on track.”
Get back to your routine as quickly as possible Get back to your old routine that was effective! Do what works! The experts agree that routines can be both calming and important in getting back on track. Structure is key! If you create structure, you can get back on track more quickly. You can get back on track and lose your unwanted pounds. We at Red Mountain Weight Loss are committed to helping you succeed. Stop thinking and start doing! You are worth it!
Dr. Kim Feinstein, Psy. D. is a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and Red Mountain’s Behavioral Weight Loss Specialist. She specializes in weight management, body image concerns, and eating disorders & prides herself in her ability to educate, guide, and inspire patients to overcome obstacles and ultimately achieve their goals.