You know that sinking feeling when you realize nothing fits?
When you have to lie down to button your jeans, sometimes the only goal (it may seem more like a fantasy) is to make them fit. You’re tired of not being able to wear all the clothes in your closet and frustrated with the way you keep eating stuff you shouldn’t even though overeating keeps you from succeeding.
The temptation is to get hyper-focused on your weight loss goal and start getting really specific about how much and when and what you will eat.
You tell yourself you can do this. You start conjuring up massive amounts of willpower.
You get ready to do battle.
Can you relate?
The problem is, you’ve been around the block with this stuff a few times, and if you are like just about everyone I work with, you are tired of doing battle with food and weight. You’re tired of limited success or success that doesn’t last.
Thin begins when food loses its power in your life.
You’re probably sick of food and weight and eating being such hard work and I bet you’re frustrated with how much of energy and time they steal. Someone recently told me, “If I had devoted as much time and energy as I’ve spent trying to succeed at THIS to any OTHER area of my life, I would have created something amazing by now.”
Unfortunately, sometimes the panic about your tight jeans or your dress that doesn’t fit can lead you to dive into unrealistic approaches that don’t really serve you. And they don’t work – at least not for long.
A better way, that I teach in Where Thin Begins, is to begin with a vision and a systematic approach that will take you much farther than a diet or a strict, exhausting, life overhaul ever will – because there’s more to life than just fitting into your jeans.
And when you step out of the vicious cycles into a way of living where you can take the power back from food, amazing things are possible.
When Laura began working with me, she had a stressful life, a schedule, and a business that she felt she could never keep up with. She was irritable, not focused in the way she wanted to be, and she was using sugar to cope with stress, reward herself, and to energize herself as she rushed from task to task. She had gained 30 pounds, she couldn’t find a minute for herself, and when she did, she spent it feeling guilty and frustrated for not making different choices. Her “get it done” attitude and her panic that her clothes weren’t fitting, led her to create strict plans and rules for herself that she consistently failed at because she just didn’t have the time, energy, or motivation for one more difficult thing.
Laura knew things weren’t working, but she couldn’t figure out how to break free of the vicious cycles that weren’t getting her anywhere. She had no idea what it would take to get control of her emotional eating and her weight because her discipline and willpower never seemed to be enough.
Laura didn’t need more willpower, she needed to take the power back from food.
Here’s what Laura and I did. Laura wanted her jeans to fit again, AND, overeating was the glue that was helping her cope with the lack of balance and fun and relaxation in her life. Food was comfort, food was stress relief. Food was instant energy, and food was a way to zone out when she couldn’t stop worrying about all the things she was trying to juggle.
If we had ignored the reasons that food was so powerful for Laura, we would have failed before we started. Instead, imagine for a moment what it would be like if food just wasn’t that interesting or important to you – at least when you weren’t hungry. That’s the goal that Laura and I set.
Instead of feeding Laura’s belief that she needed to deprive herself of food to succeed, I introduced her to the Where Thin Begins approach which is to create a new foundation and new habits in your life that take the power away from food and give that power back to you. We did that by finding ways to feed the hidden hungers that Laura was taking care of with food.
Laura was using food for comfort, fun, stress relief, energy, and a way to zone out and calm down, so we began to systematically design and put in place better strategies for these things. Because Laura was so overwhelmed already, it was critical to keep the changes do-able and to make sure they added positively to her life instead of creating more stress. As Laura applied these targeted, bite-sized ways to address the hidden hungers that food was feeding, not only did her life start to feel better, but food lost its power.
What’s better than not having to lie down to button your jeans? I vote for having jeans that fit AND a life that feeds you instead of wearing you out. I vote for weight that goes away because you aren’t that interested in eating the way that you used to eat.
Want some of this approach? You can start making progress today. Start by exploring what you know about the ways you rely on food that have nothing to do with physical hunger. Want to go deeper? Check out Where Thin Begins, my 3 month private group coaching experience – starting soon.
Take good care,