Is Your Weight Loss Speak In Order?
Losing weight is more a mental game than anything else
I looked in the mirror the other day (well… I do this every day, buuuut), anyway, on this particular morning I was noticing something a little extra there, sitting right above my athleisure wear waist fold. (Let me explain this waist fold thingy before we move on… It goes like this: I don’t like my athleisure wear pants pulled up to their 1-foot stretch capacity that allows for their “control top” status. To me, I prefer not to walk around all day feeling like Urkel or that I’m in the early stages of maternity wear. So I unfashionably fold the top in half so the waistline sits slightly below my real, actual waistline. Unfortunately, my preference for comfort has created this unsettling fact: This fold now accentuates what it was intended to divert attention from. However, this used to never be an issue. I didn’t have a muffin top. I didn’t have a muffin top!!)
But there it was, plain as day. So of course what came pouring out of my mouth in a steady stream of consciousness was all sorts of obscenities focusing on the horror I had created right before my very eyes.
How could this have happened? I’ve been in the BEST shape of my life, I had this down. This wasn’t on my list anymore. I lost those last few stubborn pounds and I was off the hook. I didn’t have to focus on this anymore. Feeling bad about myself (for my weight) was no longer a thing. I wore a bikini (after baby #2 mind you) and it worked. It really worked.
Talk about a funk this put me in. Immediately I dove headfirst into deprivation mode (and I do NOT thrive in deprivation). I was tossing everything out of the pantry: Crackers, bread, butter, cookies, chips, coffee, wine (oh the horror), were all off the “allowed” list. Clearly I had overstepped the line of “moderation” and hurled myself knee deep into grotesque indulgence and I had to be stopped!
Can You See Where the Speak Comes In Now?
When faced with the unexpected, I simply freaked the eff out. I became irrational, indignant, overwhelmed, anxious, depressed, and mean-spirited (to myself — and, inadvertently to my kids because who else can you irrationally unload all your anger/issues/fears onto in the guise of their inability to listen/follow directions/leave mommy alone!). I hacked myself to pieces and walked out of that bathroom half the woman I was when I walked in. And then I expected to eliminate all these things and be successful. Genius plan.
You must be kind to yourself.
When you begin talking like that to yourself, you’re not in the proper mindset to accomplish anything productive, inspiring, motivating, or worth your best efforts. You are defeated even before you begin and you don’t even realize it because you’re in such a state of emotional turmoil that you think that’s you’re only way out of this fatty mess.
I remember having lunch that day with my mother-in-law and all I mean ALL I was focused on was how fat I was feeling in my jeans, how I couldn’t eat ANYTHING that was on the menu, and how I simply longed for a glass of wine to chill me out.
She was talking and I couldn’t even focus on what we were talking about. I was like a zombie.
Get a hold of yourself girl!
The Teacher Becomes the Student
Yes, my belly was laying on top of my yoga pant fold. My fitted shirts only brought this fact more to life. Clearly I couldn’t continue with this fashion without scarring my esteem permanently. I‘m a personal trainer, and a wellness coach who knows whole food nutrition and how to implement that into my client’s life. It was time for me to take a note out of my own book and follow that advice.
Enter rational, loving self-speak. I started with discontinuing my daily habit of checking out my bulge in the mirror everyday, which always allowed my inner critic (or a-hole) to go effin haywire on me. I gave my inner a-hole so much ammunition that it was beginning to get on me in other areas of my life. (Feed the gremlin, don’t be shocked when it multiplies!)
I then began allowing myself to speak amazingly kind to myself. I actually gave myself permission (aka Brene Brown speak) to look at myself in the mirror and speak nicely. And to my surprise, this really worked. I could actually feel a shift in my mental state. It was like I walked through some imaginary foggy hole and came out on the other side that was crystal clean and light and free of my inner a-hole. It was fucking amazing that it was that easy. I needed to hold onto this!
I didn’t go all elimination, but instead began paying attention.
I found myself grabbing for snacks more than I realized I ever did before. I then asked myself “Why? Why am I going for the cheese and crackers? Easy snack? Feeling indulgent? Avoiding doing something else?” These questions allowed me to become present. To stop and think before I simply reacted with hard-wired habits. Habits that were so hard-wired I didn’t even have to think about them, they simply came to life without me realizing.
Fast forward two months and my muffin top has lessened its grip on my midsection, my fitted shirts are back in rotation, and when my inner a-hole gets going, I check myself, think about what’s setting it off and get busy throwing down with some positive speak that uplifts instead of depresses.
So far so good.
When you’re feeling down and out, depressed and are engaging in some downright nasty self-speak, you need to:
- Stop what you’re doing and get your power back. Losing weight will come quicker, easier and be way more sustainable if you tackle it from a positive mindset rather than from a depressed, anxious, stressed out, grossed out state.
- Don’t feed the gremlin by criticizing yourself. Ask yourself a few powerful questions. What is going on right now that is bothering me? How can I turn this around and come at it from a different perspective? What is going on right now in this moment that is good?
- Take a deep breath and decide to give yourself permission to love yourself and to be amazingly kind to yourself for the rest of the day. It may be difficult at first, but as I say to my kids as a reminder that perseverance pays off, I ask them “Who practices everyday? Arron Judge baby!”
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Photo cred to Andre Hunter and Jason Rosewell from Unsplash.