The weight loss industry is big business on a global scale. We are told how we should look to feel beautiful and good about ourselves. We are told that if we use this weight loss supplement or follow that point counting system or specific meal plan diet, we will lose weight, look youthful, be skinny, and our happiness and confidence will skyrocket. But is it all true?
As a clinical hypnotherapist and coach, I work with many female and male weight loss clients.
- They come in after they have tried every other weight loss program or diet.
- They have tried trendy diets, fasting, weight loss supplements, meal plans, counting points, counting calories, food elimination. You name it.
- They feel frustrated and hopeless, and are hoping hypnosis will work magic, and the pounds will finally drop off.
But there are other aspects to weight loss that are preventing you from losing weight and getting the body you want. These have nothing to do with food or a diet.
6 Things to Consider When You Want To Lose Weight
Everyone who has followed a diet before knows that weight loss is not solely about the food you eat. Weight loss is usually more complex than the food itself – let’s face it, this is why we, as a society, are so obsessed with it.
Read below about 6 approaches that can help you actually lose weight for good.
Advertisers and big weight loss companies want to sell their self-love products (or programs). Don’t let them or the number on your scale decide whether you love yourself.
- Learn to connect with your inner self and your body, rather than live by someone else’s standards.
- Appreciate the parts of you that you love, and get to know the parts of you that you wish to change. Listen to what they are trying to teach you.
- Invest in yourself. Allocate time when you can re-energize and do something you love. It can be as short as taking a few deep breaths in silence or as big as taking a few hours or a day to do something you like (for example, painting, yoga, hiking, etc). Spend some time in your own company and learn to enjoy it.
Stress and Anxiety Management
Stress is inevitable for many of us. Oftentimes, it’s hard to notice how stress and anxiety are building up until we get to a tipping point and feel suddenly overwhelmed. We live up to other people’s expectations and take part in the world’s rat race. We want to do it all – work, family, friends, vacations, shopping, etc. When you are stressed, your body is in a state of “fight-flight-freeze” (responding to a perceived threat) and releases adrenaline and cortisol, which suppress the function of nonessential systems, including your digestive system.
- Stress affects the vagus nerve and, therefore, your digestive system, which means you don’t digest food as you would if you were relaxed.
- Stress and anxiety affect your food choices. Many people eat more or eat unhealthy foods when they feel stressed or anxious.
- Another area that is affected by stress and anxiety is sleep. Read below about the relationship between sleep and weight loss.
Sleep (from Why We Sleep by Matthew Walker)
In this book, Dr. Matthew Walker, a scientist and professor of neuroscience and psychology, explains that we make bad food choices when we don’t get enough sleep, and we eat more when we are tired due to hormone imbalance.
Dr. Walker also says, “Sleep recalibrates our emotional brain circuits, allowing us to navigate the next-day social and psychological challenges with cool-headed composure.”
“Sleep reforms the body’s metabolic state by fine-tuning the balance of insulin and circulating glucose. Sleep further regulates our appetite, heping control body weight through healthy food selection rather than rash impulsivity.”
There is a link between ‘night owls’ and depression, anxiety, diabetes type 2, cancer, heart attack, stroke and bad decision making. This is due to insufficient sleeping hours.
“Sleep is the single most effective thing we can do to reset our brain and body health each day — Mother Nature’s best effort yet at contra-death.”
When you think about weight loss, you are often focused on negative aspects of it, like eliminating the food you like, being hungry, the food you’ll say no to when you go out, etc.
- You probably think of a timeframe where your willpower will need to work full steam – you will push hard, you will deprive yourself, you might even need to increase your physical activity dramatically. But after a short period of time, you’ll reach your goal and feel better.
- Instead, you can set realistic expectations and think about your weight loss journey as an exciting opportunity to change your relationship with food.
- You can think of it as an empowering opportunity to feed your body with nourishing food, discover delicious new flavours (and recipes), and move towards wellness and health.
This is an opportunity to take back control. You can be the master of your mind and make better decisions, neutralizing triggers that are initiated by your relationship with food to create healthy habits for life, rather than follow a diet that has an end date.
When I work with my clients on their weight loss goals, I always encourage them to add mindfulness.
- Be mindful of your old programming and question your processes. Once my clients notice their old programming, it is easier for them to understand and focus on what they want to change.
- Mindful eating helps to slow you down. It allows you to notice flavours and textures you weren’t aware of before.
- Mindfulness and mindful eating allow you to make better food choices and identify when you are physically hungry (vs. emotionally hungry) and when you are full, so you can stop eating when you’ve had enough.
Based on studies in the field of positive psychology, there is an association between expressing gratitude and greater happiness.
- People who express their gratitude experience improved health and stronger relationships. Those who include gratitude in their lives deal better with adversity.
- Practicing gratitude will help you manage stress and anxiety better and promote well-being.
- As you feel better about yourself and experience greater happiness, you’ll make better choices, which will accelerate your weight loss.
Weight loss is not always easy, and oftentimes it brings with it a group of different mindset issues that make weight loss downright difficult.
Keep a curious mindset about your weight loss journey and think of it as an opportunity to build healthier habits and a better lifestyle, rather than being simply about the number that shows up on your scale.
Miri supports weight loss clients online and in her office in Vancouver, BC. Her approach to weight loss is holistic and takes many aspects into consideration. Miri’s clients are not only successful in losing weight, they also enjoy improved overall well-being and new and healthy habits for life.
For more information contact Miri Malkin @ Miri Malkin Hypnosis For Top Performance or click below to find out more about the weight loss programs Miri offers.