Three scary reasons why you might not be losing weight
Have you ever notice when you want something big, you initially get super excited with the thought of having it. But then when you actually take a minute to think about what it would take to get it, or how it might drastically change your current situation - you slowly start to fill with fear and dread, and before long the excitement you once had, has faded away and you begin to give up on the idea altogether.
How can we want something so badly and yet be so scared to get it?
One of the biggest things that get in our way when it comes to losing weight is our fear of change. This fear (which is almost entirely false) keeps up trapped and prevents us from living the life we truly desire. This happens to the best of us and can affect us in all areas of our life. Whatever the desire, it can quickly come crashing down on us all because of fear.
So if fear is the gatekeeper to us reaching our truest potential and happiness, why does it sabotage us continually and how can we move past our fears and live the life we want.
Let's try to understand why this happens in the first place.
Fear is a very natural and normal part of our existence and plays a crucial role in our survival. The purpose of fear is to keep us safe and protect us from harm by steering us clear from potentially dangerous situations; such as a lion chasing us, or wandering too close to the edge of a cliff.
For the most part, fear is learned, in fact, the only real fear we have as a baby is a fear of falling. If you have small children, you know how fearless they can be. They will reach for hot objects or climb on dangerous things all without thinking twice until they have a terrible experience causing them to create fear around that particular experience.
Fear also tries to keep us safe in another way. When our mind gets accustomed to doing things a certain way for a period of time, and there are no perceived threats to our safety. Our mind assumes that the choices we are making must be safe, and decides to continue to do things as we have been.
Our minds dislike change very much, there are too many unknown variables, and it continually has to readjust and learn to get comfortable with a new way of doing things. So if it can prevent this from happening in the first place, then logically that would be good.
One of the ways our minds keep us in our comfort zone is by filling our head with worst-case scenario thoughts. If our mind can make the idea of changing seem scarier and less worthwhile; then it can successfully keep us from any potential harm that could happen.
The thing is that the majority of fear is false and completely fabricated by our thoughts. In fact, 97% of the things that we worry might happen, never even come to pass. These constant worrying thoughts can make it very difficult to go after the things we want despite how badly we want them.
Before we look at how we can overcome this, let's look at some of the ways fear stops us when is it comes to losing weight.
Scary reason number one - I will lose my friends, partner, or family.
Often one of the biggest fears standing in our path is our loved ones. The current eating habits we have can be so intertwined with our relationships, that they become the foundation that the relationship is based upon.
Generally speaking, we usually have a partner in crime when it comes to eating, and it can be scary to think about how we might lose them if we change our eating ways. Especially if the majority of the things you do together revolve around food.
It also becomes a problem if your loved one or ones don't want to make changes themselves. Where will that leave the relationship? Will you be able to stay friends or still hang out?
People also can feel attacked by you wanting to make a change. They often view it as a personal jab, that you are implying they are not good enough the way they are. Because if you want to lose weight, then you must think they are bad for not wanting to.
The problem here is that some of these fears may have some truth to them, and you may have some people in your life that can't accept the fact that you want to make a change. Sometimes this can be difficult because it can be our very best friend or partner and we don't want to upset or hurt them.
But in this case, it's essential to realize that when you focus on putting yourself first and moving past the fear of losing someone close. What generally happens is that you become an inspiration for that person. When they see how happy and healthy you are becoming, they will naturally want to be a part of that and share in your joy.
However, in the rare case that they choose not to join or support you, perhaps they were not genuinely interested or invested in you in the first place. Your change has simply brought this to light.
Scary reason number two - I won't like the new me.
Another reason we might be scared to change is based on the way we see ourselves. We may not always like, but at least we know who we are and have found comfort in that.
If we have been a certain way for a long time, it can be tough to picture ourselves any other way, especially if we have negative judgments in our mind about how skinny or fit people are.
What if my personality changes and I act differently in my new body? What if I am not as funny or lovable after I lose weight? I may not like my body now, but I know all of its curves, and I am used to it. What if I don't like my body after I lose weight? What if I become obsessed with having to eat or be perfect all the time?
Thoughts of us not being the person we currently are on the inside anymore can be scary, but learning to love ourselves fully can remove these fears.
Understanding that the way we see ourselves on the outside should not affect the way we love ourselves on the inside is at the root of this issue.
When we make choices based on love, meaning that we chose to lose weight because we want to be healthy and prevent health issues, not because we want to be a certain weight to be accepted. When we can truly love ourselves despite any external factors, then we can move into change knowing no matter what happens, we will still love ourselves as we are, no matter how that may change.
Scary reason number three - I will miss my current life and all my favorite things.
Weight loss is not merely about a number on the scale; it's a whole way of life.
All our daily routines and habits revolve around a way of life that has gotten us to where we currently are. To change our weight, we have to change the way we live, and this can be incredibly scary.
When we are faced with the things, we will have to "give up" our minds begin to go into grief mode, and we can be extremely saddened by the thought of not being able to do or have the things we love anymore.
Thoughts of not being able to enjoy certain holiday foods. Or Friday night movies, and feasting on junk food with your loved one. Or even just giving up your daily go to breakfast or lunch. Thoughts like this can be enough to make us want to give up before we even start.
The people, places, and foods we love can become all mixed up together, and the thought of disrupting any of it can be overwhelming.
Rather than focusing on all the things, you will have to give up, shift your attention to all the things you'll gain.
Think about the new recipes and holiday foods you can make and start a new tradition. Look forward to trying fresh new foods and view it as an adventure to find new go-to treats. Get excited about finding new restaurants, and new hang out spots. Think about new places to shop and get excited about new items to add to your routine.
If you had told me years ago that one day I would become obsessed with mason jars and reusable produce bags, I would have looked at you like you lost your mind - but here we are, and I light up with just the thought of buying another reusable bag.
When you keep your focus on the benefits and positives, it makes staying in your current comfort zone seem less desirable and helps move you into change.
Getting in the habit of doing this is essential, especially once the initial excitement of change wears off. If you are in the habit of focusing on the benefits, you will be able to continue to create the motivation you need to keep you moving forward.
Change can be scary, but not changing can also be scary. Whenever these false fears show up, it's vital to ask yourself, what's the cost of remaining the same. When we see that the benefits of change outweigh the fear of change, we can then start to take steps in a new direction.
Staying focused on making small daily changes that will eventually lead to bigger changes, in the long run, is a better approach to take, rather than making big changes all at once.
Having support is also crucial when moments of self-doubt or fear arise. It is so important to have someone that understands or can empathize with you and help encourage you to move past your discomfort.
If you are on this journey alone and you are looking for guidance and support, I encourage to come join the Food Over Mood Facebook Group for women who want to lose weight and overcome emotional eating and food addictions. There you will find the tools and support you need to keep moving forward on your journey towards health and happiness.
The road to recovery is a journey and never easy, but by changing the foods we eat, our daily habits and with proper support and coaching, success is achieved.
I love hearing from you guys feel free to reach out and contact me if you have questions or leave a comment below.
Love and Wellness