I was chatting with Our Patient Facilitator the other day and she mentioned she had a patient that she has been working with for sometime about having Lap Band Surgery that had been putting it off. After a year of waiting for the perfect time to start, two weddings, an anniversary, a cruse vacation and the holidays produced a additional 35lbs to her already over stressed body reducing her overall health. This actually is a pretty common issue.
Why do we typically put off losing weight when we know will improve our lives?
Understanding the main obstacles which prevent one from losing weight in the future is important to overcome the issue.
In the past weight may have been lost in the wrong ways, which often leave many feeling much worse, depressed or that the whole task is a difficult and tiresome one. Some have made the mistake of using quick fixes or some diet which forbids any carbohydrates or only allows you to eat protein and vegetables.
Some view losing weight as some difficult task full of hardships. And so, when the thought of losing weight comes to mind, people tend to have a negative mindset. They see it as taking too much effort, and therefore keep putting it off. A key issue that tends to be forgotten and not realized is that when one takes good care of themselves, this greatly affects the decisions they make and how they feel about themselves everyday.
Feelings of guilt do not help in motivating most people to lose weight. What it can do though is cause people to look for a quick fix. It took time to put on the weight and so it will take time to lose it. Quick fixes make people more disappointed and tired than before they started. Intense effort is made while forbidding the self from necessary nutrients needed by the body only to result in feelings of despair and wanting to give up.
Forgiving oneself for becoming overweight is important. Many factors such as stress could have caused it. Give credit that the noble goal to change and lose the weight is present.
Recognize How Putting Off Weight Loss Is Not Paying Off
The first step is the hardest … Admit why you’re doing it. Deep down, there’s often an underlying cause of procrastination: Keeping things status quo is working for you in some way.
Look at Yourself
It is easy to put off losing weight if you do not really look at your actual size and shape. Reminding yourself that you need to lose weight can be as simple as buying a new mirror. Many people only look in mirrors that show them from the chest up. It is also common for people to use door mirrors that only show the middle of the body. These mirrors do not show the full view of your body, and they make it easy to put off losing weight. Pictures can also be very reveling of weight gain. I know I used to avoid looking at my refection, it wasn’t until I saw a picture of myself that I realized how much I had allowed my weight to creep up.
Realize it’s Not as Bad as You Think
The main reason most of us put off weight loss is that we think it is going to be unpleasant, dull, restrictive. Granted, a new change to eat healthy and exercise isn’t the most enjoyable thing in the world, but it’s not exactly torture either. Things rarely turn out to be as bad as we think they’ll be: That diet isn’t as restrictive as you think; that time you exercise isn’t going to ruin your day. Think about it, People much more busy then you are finding time to exercise and eat right, so can you.
Nobody ever progressed staying stagnant. That is why to further develop and clear ones mind from putting off losing the weight, progress is needed. Keep moving forward. Even if plans and goals are not accomplished, it doesn’t mean failure and the right to give up. Rather, a lesson or two would have been learned and one can take the experience and move on.
Stop Making Excuses
Excuses are an easy way to put off losing weight. Holidays, money, stress, and time are all common excuses for delaying weight loss, but they are only excuses.
If you want to lose weight, start by losing your excuses. Healthy eating can be done year round despite any excuse you can think of. Would you rather gain five pounds during the holidays or lose five pounds?
If you want to stop putting off losing weight, you must realize that you can do this. Start by setting realistic goals.
Create a plan of what you need to do
I’m a great believer in writing things down. One of the best ways to stop procrastinating is to create a plan of what you need to do — and when — to make it happen. This could be as simple as making a daily to-do list or a journal of monthly goals. Goal-setting is crucial to weight loss success and procrastinators aren’t so hot at it. By putting down some goals in writing, they’ll seem more real … and reachable.
Seek out Support and Encouragement
Let other people know your intentions of losing weight. The support of your friends and family can help you tremendously. Let them know of your plan and for weight loss. Let them know how they can help you by being supportive and set boundaries. Let them know the difference between criticism and encouragement. When other people are aware of your goals and plan they can be there to encourage you as you go along.
If you are having trouble starting a diet and exercise plan, try starting small. Instead of revamping your entire lifestyle, you should start by changing one or two things. Take “baby steps” toward big changes. Make an appointment with yourself for exercise, planning menus, etc., and you’re more likely to follow through. Walking just five minutes today is better than not walking at all yesterday, right? Park a little further away from places, so you will be forced to walk. Eat a smaller diner, or only have desert every other day.
Visualize your future self at goal
Speak words of encouragement to yourself. Write notes to the future you. What would you say to the new stronger more confident you?
Understanding the reasons why weight loss is put off can help overcome all obstacles standing in the way. By forgiving oneself, conditioning the mindset, constant progression and moving forward planned by taking baby steps weight loss can finally be achieved. Now is the time to take control over ones health and well-being.
Now is the time to act and accomplish.