If you struggle with food and weight loss… you are not alone. It’s time to ditch the diets.
So many of us eat for comfort, stress-relief, distraction, and many other reasons.
It’s tough, because food is everywhere right? It tastes delicious, doesn’t talk back, and is basically like having a nice warm hug.
But it doesn’t make us feel good when we keep restricting it, then overeating, then beating ourselves up and starting again. There is definitely, 100%, a better way.
In this post we’re talking about mindset, ditching diets, and making changes that last for good.
No matter what struggles you’ve had, you can get to a point where food is no longer an issue.
Other people have done it – that means you can too.
So, most of us know what we should be eating, right? We just don’t do it consistently.
And the main reason we don’t do it consistently is because of our habits, thought patterns and beliefs.
We pick up habits and beliefs when we are young, and we build on them with experiences. The trouble is that once beliefs are ingrained, we don’t tend to question them. We become programmed to think and act a certain way, which creates the results in our lives.
If you believe…
- chocolate makes you feel better
- you have no self control
- you’re addicted to sugar
your brain will decide ‘that’s the way it is, I can’t help it’, and you’ll keep proving yourself right.
It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy.
But once we start to observe our thoughts, question them, and decide how we WANT to be thinking instead, we can begin to make changes.
Breaking free from diets
So many people spend years, even decades, stuck in the misery of the diet cycle.
We ALL deserve so much more than that.
All of us are blessed with one life on this amazing planet. And one beautiful, incredible body in which to experience that life in.
We have to value it, nourish it, nurture it, cherish it. It is so special.
As women, we can work together to literally change the lives of the next generation.
We can stop the fight we have with ourselves and our bodies.
And we can be part of a movement towards self love, self acceptance, and freedom.
Freedom from diet culture, self criticism, and never feeling enough.
For many women I work with, the motivation is to be a better role model for their children.
And that’s incredible incentive. We need to learn how to love and cherish our bodies so that our children will learn how to do this too.
You also need to want to do this for you.
Because you deserve it.
You deserve to be happy and live a life you love.
And you can make that happen.
How to make positive change
To give yourself the best chance of seeing the results you want, you need to accept two things:
- where you are right now
- the fact that it’s down to you to change things
Acceptance is not about blame – it doesn’t matter how you got to where you are. Blaming others won’t help, and guilt is a waste of your valuable time. All we want to do is be proactive, and get you to where you want to be.
By being ok with where you are, you can start looking for ways to appreciate the body you have. You also get to notice and celebrate every bit of physical and mental progress along the way.
Taking full responsibility means you give yourself full power to change.
Without that ownership, you give your power away.
If you rely on people and circumstances to enable you to succeed, you can easily remain stuck for a very long time. This has to be down to you.
While you might not be able control each situation, you can always choose how you respond.
Accepting how things are with your body and eating habits, and deciding that you are going to change things, is the most effective way of changing your life for the better.
Letting go of restriction
Succeeding with weight loss means working with your body, not against it.
It’s not about cutting things out. It’s about changing your relationship with food and your body, so you are empowered to make choices that truly serve you.
Taking you to a point where food is nourishment, you are in control, and you never feel the need to diet again.
How do you do that?
We can start by moving away from restriction, and focusing on abundance.
The freedom to choose anything you want at any time, and enjoying food that truly makes you feel good.
Focusing on freedom and abundance removes the feelings of guilt when you eat something ‘bad’. When nothing is off limits or a ‘naughty’ choice to make, you can’t ruin it. You don’t need to binge, because that food is available whenever you truly want it.
But what if you want to eat cake and chocolate and pizza every day, with a bottle of wine at night?
You can do that if you want, but chances are when you wont truly enjoy it. The novelty quickly wears off, and it obviously doesn’t translate in to the results you want either.
Most of us want to eat well most of the time so we feel at our best, and just be able to enjoy a few indulgences in the week too. Which you can totally do.
The goal: saying no to restriction, and yes to restraint.
You know you can have anything, but you need to pick and choose your moments. Health, fitness, and happiness comes with freedom of choice – and sometimes that choice is to say no so that you make more progress towards what truly makes you happy.
A plan to follow
To get you feeling at your best, we need to combine freedom and abundance with mindfulness and structure.
A suggested template would be this:
Plan 3 nutritious meals each day and sit down to eat each one. Also plan a couple of snacks if you need them. The goal is to mindfully eat food that you chose ahead of time, rather than mindlessly graze.
What constitutes a nutritious meal? For more detailed guidance and meal ideas, check out this article HERE.
As a general guide, a source of protein and some veggies or fruit are key to aim for, plus whatever carbs or fats you would enjoy.
It doesn’t have to be perfect every time either – calories matter most for weight loss, not how nutritious every meal is.
This is about planning ahead and then being present – eating what you enjoy, and what makes you feel good.
We often think that planning creates rigidity, but it actually creates more freedom. You make your plan, then you don’t need to keep thinking about what to eat for the rest of the day. You have time to focus about all the more important things in life.
Because you have a plan that you stick to, when something amazing crops up that makes you think ‘hell yes!’, it fits in a whole lot better. And because you know nothing is off limits, you enjoy it. Guilt-free. Without bingeing.
And then you move on with your life.
Make your next choice a great one, and carry on.
It’s amazing how far that will take you.
This is part 1 – there’s more to follow.
And to find out more about how I can help you through online coaching, click HERE.