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Behavioral Strategies for Weight Loss

Goethe once said "if you treat an individual as they are, they will stay as they are, but if you treat them as if they were what they ought to be and could be, they will become what they ought to be and could be”. This goes for you too!

Therefore in our inner voice and mind’s eye, we have to see ourselves as more healthy and thinner. And if you want a different result, you must take different actions. One must see what you are doing that is leading to the same old results. We almost all know what we are doing wrong. Eating too much too late, drinking alcohol with meals, eating at buffets, eating supersized quantities, the list goes on and on.

Every good change temporarily is disconcerting and involves letting go of the familiar and comfortable, and mastering the new until it is familiar and comfortable. Don't get sidetracked or give excuses for negative behavior and don't discount what you know is wrong or convince yourself otherwise. We must resolve ourselves to change, change the talk, change the walk, resolve the conflicts, decrease resistance and envision the new you.

Don't start out with phrases like "I won't or I can't." Think of specific reasons why change is valuable for you. Keep reminding yourself this. Set goals and contemplate thoughts that maybe you can! Eventually replace maybe you can with "I will". Pick a start date and get going.

Set small goals that you can succeed at for the first few months. Habit is formed by repetition over the course of many weeks. You may hit stages of relatively little weight loss, but these are plateaus so keep the healthy habit going. You will blow right through this plateau and keep losing. Eventually you will be at a healthy weight and unable to lose much more without killing yourself! You don't want to kill yourself, LOL!

Are you confident in your ability to change? You must be and can be if you believe in yourself and the importance of what you're doing. Be careful not to listen to the naysayers or friends and relatives that are staying heavy while you are getting thinner. Just reinforce to them and yourself that you are getting healthier and that you are the same person on the inside with just a different look on the outside. Be careful not to become narcissistic or too into your new look. Always watch for people who now find you attractive and before ignored you! They are likely pretty superficial. Be the healthy leader that brings your overweight friends and relatives to the realization that thinner usually means healthier.

Things you can do to be more successful? Consider partnering with another person and even making a small friendly wager to make the challenge more fun. Contemplate what will motivate you as weight loss is so personal and individualized. Break through resistance that usually comes from anything as not wanting to buy a new wardrobe to having a fear of losing your old friends. Clean out your pantry of the high calorie processed foods and consider shopping the perimeter of the supermarket where most the healthy foods are. Be hopeful and have confidence and optimism. Change the self-talk to be much more positive. Examples are "I can, I intend to, I am starting to, I just might be able to, etc.”

Give yourself rewards for achieving goals. Rewards can be going to the movies, getting a new wardrobe, going on a vacation, or many other things only you will know. On days that you slip up, minimize these with self-talk stating that it's no big deal and it's a one day thing. Don't catastrophize as one less-than-perfect day is no big deal. Praise, praise, praise yourself! The goal isn't to look like a fashion model or somebody in a magazine as that is not the purpose of losing weight. The goal should be a healthier you, a more positive view and even a cosmetically more appealing you. Find some supportive friends to encourage you and if none exist, you must have that inner voice telling you that you are doing great!