So many women (myself included) have had it all backward. We think that in order to let go of our unwanted pounds, we need to buckle down, restrict our foods, and get serious and disciplined with ourselves!
This usually backfires.
I’ve discovered why this happens, and learned about a much more relaxed and enjoyable approach to weight loss that I want to share with you!
The Wrong Way to Go About Losing Weight
When we listen to our Inner Critic as it shouts at us about eating bad foods or “letting ourselves go,” we get stressed out.
When we discipline ourselves into counting, weighing, and measuring our food and our bodies, we get stressed out.
When we feel really hungry, worry about losing control at a birthday party, or fear having to face the scale after falling off the wagon, we get stressed out.
The common denominator in these scenarios – stress – is a major contributing force to metabolic slow down and overeating. Stress, anxiety and negative self-talk can literally create a physiologic stress response in the body. Our bodies release more cortisol and insulin, which has the unwanted effect of signaling the body to store weight, store fat, and stop building muscle.
So how do we change this pattern?
The Better Way to Weight Loss
There is a really fun way to fire up your metabolism and lose weight effortlessly: indulge your pleasure!
Pleasure is not something frivolous or only to be experienced on Caribbean vacations! It is actually required by our bodies. When you relax, enjoy, and love yourself, your body will digest and metabolize food better. You will also fill a hunger that can’t be met by any amount of chocolate chip cookies.
Owning your desires and indulging your pleasure is the best body fat solution out there. Try this:
Enjoy Your Food. When it comes to eating, instead of thinking, What should I have?, ask yourself: What do I want? Make your meals a five star experience. Replace the take-out container with the good china. Eat by candlelight. If you are craving a cookie, don’t settle. Go to your favorite bakery or make your grandma’s recipe. You deserve to experience pleasure from your food.
Enjoy Your Body. Instead of attacking your body with hateful, negative thoughts, get totally comfortable and in touch with your body. Soak in a warm bath. Dance around naked. Plan a romantic night with your partner that’s all about YOU.
Respond to Your Desires. Don’t stifle your dreams and desires. Make a list of all the things you really, really want. Feel the good feelings of having those things, and then take some action to get them.
Ask for what you want. Break the habit of putting others’ needs before your own.
Fire Your Inner Critic. Have some compassion for yourself! Give yourself comfort and soothing words when you are feeling low. Encourage yourself with positive affirmations like:
I celebrate life.
I have everything I need to be my best self.
Each day I focus on being the best me I can be and giving that gift to others.
The more I love my body, the better I feel.
Follow these guidelines, and your body will respond by relaxing and releasing weight. Try it! The worst thing that can happen is…that you FEEL GOOD.
Elaine Morales, Health and Lifestyle Transformation Coach, helps frazzled and frustrated women gain freedom from food drama, ditch yo-yo dieting and emotional overeating, and achieve their ideal weight in a way that is healthy and joyful. To learn more about Elaine’s pleasurable approach to realizing the body and life of your dreams, check outwww.jumpstartwithelaine.com.