Millions of people spend big bucks to lose weight, whether it’s with surgery, diet pills, gym memberships or a number of other avenues. However, a lot of people end up being disappointed due to not losing the weight or regaining the weight.
As a child I often remember my grandfather asking the question (to everybody that he would talk to) “do you live to eat or eat to live”? At the time I didn’t realize that this question was actually a very good one. We’ve all heard about “emotional eaters”, people who eat to deal with their feelings when they’re sad, happy, confused, nervous, etc.
Today, I would like you to think about why you want to lose weight. I mean really be honest with yourself. Do you want to lose weight to please others, to feel “good enough”, or to find a mate. Or do you want to lose weight to be healthier? Mentally preparing yourself to lose weight means that you must be prepared to deal with the real reason you are overweight or want to lose weight.
To find out the real reason you eat more than you should, start journaling. This journal will include what your thoughts and feelings are like during those times when you are eating, and rating your sense of hunger on a 1-10 scale. Through this journal you may notice certain patterns of behavior and negative thoughts will be revealed. Once you find out why you eat when you do, the next step is to really decide if you want to work on those issues. If you do want to work on those cognitive, behavioral and emotional issues, you are well on your way to being prepared to work on losing the weight. Remember that your thoughts are the root of how you feel and what you do. Addressing your thoughts about yourself, your weight and food will allow you to move forward on a positive track towards future weight loss.
Written By: Jizette Scott, M.A., LPC, LMFT, NCC
Assistant Director of UCC at Nicholls