It’s the weekend, you’ve just woken up and you feel good about staying in bed a little longer. You pick up the book you’ve been reading and finish another chapter. You make plans to go to the local pool with your child, meet a friend for coffee, get a take away meal in the evening and watch good film.
You feel at ease, relaxed and you look forward to the day. You give your body a good stretch, and then get out of bed to go take a shower. When you’re in the bathroom, you step on the scale. You look at the number. Suddenly, all those good vibes you were feeling – gone.
The number isn’t what you expected. It’s several pounds higher. You don’t understand. You’ve been eating as usual.
You start to feel anxiety. Even panic. Where will this lead? Your jeans are tight already. It’s summer soon, beach and pool time. Those extra pounds are going to be noticed by everyone you know.
Next up, you feel shame. Maybe you shouldn’t have eaten dessert yesterday. After all, you didn’t need it. What about the chocolate squares you allow yourself every night after dinner. Gotta stop that. You vow to skip dessert for a month half your portion sizes and no longer keep any chocolate in the house.
This time, you say to yourself, you really will keep that promise. You won’t fall off the wagon, you will stick to it. But both you and I know, this new plan isn’t going to last.
Eventually, you’ll feel deprived and find yourself in a pile of chocolate and sweet wrappers or finishing the frozen dessert you kept in the freezer for a special occasion.
Stop weighing yourself. Below are three reasons why.
Do you have moments when you ‘feel fat’? And when you do, you resolve to go on a diet or paradoxically, eat a bunch of food to feel better in the moment?
Fat is not a feeling.
Fat is a substance, either in your body, or in food.
When you experience ‘feeling fat’, you are probably experiencing another emotion underneath.
‘Feeling fat’ often means you feel:
Anxious about being judged.
Disappointed about how you performed.
Rejected by someone whose opinion you value.
Ashamed because you think you’re not good enough.
Sad because you suffered a loss.
These emotions can be very uncomfortable, so you don’t want to feel them.
One way you may have learnt to deal with these emotions is to cover them up with what you call ‘feeling fat.’
If you have a history of yo-yo dieting and/or binge eating, if you go from being ‘supergood’ with your eating to finishing the entire cake really fast, standing by the fridge when no one is looking;
You likely tell yourself:
I can’t trust myself around food!
You think that because you can’t trust yourself to only eat a certain amount of certain foods (cake, biscuits, chocolate), your only option is to stay away from them. Keep them out of the house. Don’t even have a bite.
You monitor and control your access to these foods like you are the food police.
But policing your food in this way isn’t building real trust.
It’s saying – I’ll only be OK with myself as long as I eat a particular way.
This puts a lot of pressure on yourself – and this pressure ironically often leads to out-of-control eating.
Real trust is to decide that no matter what you eat, you’re not going to beat yourself up, shame yourself, be mean to yourself.
That kind of self-trust will serve you, now, and for the rest of your life.
You will begin to relax around food.
Eating will become easy. As it should be.
Trust me on this one. ;-)
As a family of five, we drive an eight-seater van. The three children fit, the grandparents fit, and all our kit (bikes, beach toys, camping gear) fits. We bought it because we wanted something that would enable our active lifestyle and delivered on its promise: Safe, comfortable, reliable transportation.
Several months into driving our new van, we noticed a strange noise every time we drove downhill. Concerned about our safety, we took the van to the garage. We were told a few days later that there was a fault caused by a manufacturing error. Immediately our van was sent for repair, of course at no cost to us. In the mean time, we were given a replacement car. A few days after the fixed car was returned to us, we received a letter of apology, and we’ve been driving it without problems since.
We weren’t blamed for the car not working. It wasn’t our lack of willpower that caused the problem, or not driving correctly, or that we didn’t manage our emotions while driving … The manufacturer took responsibility and fixed the fault with their product, at no cost to us so that it would deliver on its promise once repaired.
Now let me tell you a different story. The one about the diet industry.