By Frances Bueno – Clinical Hypnotherapist
Weight loss. It sounds so simple. Make some changes… diet, exercise, habits and “hey presto” you’re skinnier!
But if you’re like most of my patients your experience of trying to lose weight is probably a bit different.
It seems so much harder than it should be. And is SO frustrating for most people because usually they know what they should be doing.
The problem is they just can’t seem to do it!
So here are what I’ve found to be the 6 most common roadblocks that get in your way when you’re trying to lose weight and 6 solutions for how to break through them…
ROADBLOCK #1 – Mindless Eating
A big problem many people have is the lack of awareness of their habits and behaviours around food. Would you know how many times you go to the pantry or fridge to grab something to eat? Especially after a meal when you’re not actually hungry. Also, how about how often you finish off what’s left on your kids plates? Or how many times do you go to the treat/cookie jar at work if there is one?
These mindless acts of eating are the things you often aren’t aware and can be the reason why despite your meals being spot on your weight not coming off or going up.
Stick a note on the pantry and fridge door saying…
“Are You Hungry?”
Is it that you think you’re hungry or are you actually hungry? Often it’s not real hunger so back away from the pantry or fridge and go and have a glass of water or do something to distract yourself like the washing up.
You know what real hunger feels like so create an awareness of what’s going into your mouth between meals. Once you become aware of how much extra is going in it’s easier to change the behaviour and eliminate the little extras that are adding up.
ROADBLOCK #2 – Restrictive Dieting
As tempting as restrictive diets are they are the worst thing you can do if you want long lasting weight loss. This is because of two reasons. The first is, as soon as you start thinking about restricting something then it’s all you can think of. You feel deprived and you start to crave. You’ll be able to resist for a short while but eventually you’ll break and end up binging.
The second reason is, restrictive dieting suppresses your metabolic rate. As Hayden talks about a lot, restricting intake send a signal to your brain that you’re in a ‘famine’. So to ‘protect’ you your body turns down metabolic rate to conserve energy. Now that’s not what you want when you want to burn body fat. Your body is going to store not burn body fat.
You need to eat more not less in a way. Lots more fresh, clean unprocessed foods. ‘Feasting’ on fresh foods makes you feel happy because you can eat lots of them and prevents any feeling s of deprivation. Fresh unprocessed whole foods also supply your body with all the essential nutrients it needs unlike processed ‘diet foods’.
The result from eating clean fresh unprocessed whole foods is you get positive signals flowing into your brain that say food is plentiful so let metabolic rate rip.
ROADBLOCK #3 – You Think It’s About Willpower
As a hypnotherapist I’ve discovered the reason most patients think they struggle with weight loss is because they don’t have enough willpower. They believe that if they had more willpower they’d be able to stick to a diet and lose weight. The good news is…
Your weight loss success has little or nothing to do with willpower. Willpower is not a good strategy because if you need to use willpower then you must be trying to do something you don’t want to do. Because when you do things that you want to do it doesn’t require willpower.
You need to change your way of thinking and this is where hypnotherapy is the best tool to do this. To lose weight and then maintain your new weight you need to form new food behaviours and habits. You need to change your relationship to food. You need to think differently about yourself. And as you’ve already experienced these sorts of changes may never happen if you can’t erase your current thoughts, behaviours and beliefs. And because hypnotherapy taps into the subconscious part of your mind, where these negative thoughts are help, it can erase them and reprogram the new beliefs and habits you want. Then you as I mentioned earlier you won’t need willpower.
ROADBLOCK #4 – The Voice In Your Head
Everyone who struggles with their weight has it. it’s the voice that tells you things like the following…
- One bite will be okay
- It’s only a little bit
- I’ve had a bad day
- This will make me feel so much better
That voice in your head is so convincing. It always makes such compelling case but it’s the root of the self-sabotaging behaviour always leaves you feeling guilty and depressed. The voice in your head that always pops up when you least want to hear it is the product of your past experiences, your childhood conditionings and ingrained beliefs. It justifies all the reasons why you should eat vs. the justifying the better reasons why you shouldn’t.
Change the voice. And the way you do this is with hypnotherapy. Hypnotherapy quickly, safely and effortlessly reprograms your internal voice. The new voice you start hearing is one that tells you the reasons why you don’t want to eat foods that sabotage weight loss. And the new voice pushes you towards better choices that help you stay on track and reach your dream figure.
ROADBLOCK #5 – Lack Of Support
A comment I hear a lot from patients is that they don’t feel supported by their spouse, partner or family. Countless times I’ve had patients tell me their spouse/partner gets upset when they say they to them that they’re changing the foods they eat or they’re not going to have a wine with dinner.
The reaction from their spouse/partner or family makes them feel terrible and that they’re being difficult. It makes it really difficult to make long-term changes when you’re being made to feel this way.
Another situation is when you’re in a group setting and a friend or a relative pushes you to eat something even though you say you don’t want to. It makes you feel self-conscious and judges. But what is important to realise is that when someone insists after you say no is because they feel bad that they’re unable to make healthy changes. And so to try and make themselves feel better they try and sabotage you so that you don’t make healthy changes either.
Obviously the most effective solution would be to rid these people from your life but this isn’t often possible because they’re spouses, partners, family or close friends.
So the best thing to do is to get them on board with what you’re doing and you want to do this in a non-threatening non-confrontational way. So if it’s your spouse/partner sit then down and tell them from your heart that you’re about to embark on a process of change to develop a healthy lifestyle and having their support is really important to you. Tell them that successfully making these changes means a lot to you and when the going gets tough you’ll need their support. Also reassure them that the changes you’re making are for you and you’re not trying to push the changes onto them. But it’s funny thing that when you set the example how other people habits change too.
Another way you can shield yourself from negativity and saboteurs is to surround yourself with people who are supportive, like myself. Being the support team is one of the most important roles I play in my patient’s success. Most patients know what they should be doing but they need someone to keep them accountable, on track and motivate them until they reach their goal.
ROADBLOCK #6 – Emotional/Comfort/Compulsive Eating
This is the biggie. Eating your feelings. Eating when you’re sad. Eating when you’re stressed. Eating when you’re bored. Eating when you’re happy. Eating for any number of feeling. Food is often the drug of choice to stuff down, numb or heighten an emotional state. This type of eating has nothing to do with real hunger and often spirals out of control into binging. But the comfort the eating brings is fleeting. It feels good only for the few seconds the food is in your mouth. Then you’re back to feeling how you were before, angry, stressed, depressed, anxious etc. And to make matters worse you now feel terrible, guilty and ashamed too. Food doesn’t have the power to fix your feelings, it’s just food.
To stop emotional/comfort/compulsive eating you need to break the association between food and your emotions. You need to reset what response is triggered when your emotional state changes. The most effective way I’ve found to do this is again with hypnotherapy. You can do mindfulness, you can meditate, you can deep breathe but if you don’t erase your current conditioned response you’ll always find yourself falling back to the old automatic behaviour. Hypnotherapy can reprogram what your automatic response is because it erases the emotional charges that set them in the first place.
Now if you constantly find yourself coming up against these roadblocks then stop the endless struggle by letting me set you free. Call or email me today to organise a FREE 30 minute, no obligation, Dream Figure 4 Life hypnotherapy program assessment consultation and discover how it makes your weight loss easy and effortless.
Call the clinic on 02 9524 2471 or email firstname.lastname@example.org