Here at IdealShape, we believe in positive change
. Lasting change. We believe in identifying and making the very best changes. The ones that are so good that they affect how we do everything. The way we think about everything. Especially weight loss.
If losing weight causes you a ton a stress, you may want to reevaluate your focus. Unhealthy stress often seeps back up to the surface when we’re reminded of past failure. We get stressed when we begin to do something that we’ve failed at before (like losing weight).
Why Am I So Stressed?
Stress may come to you when you get home from work and find yourself stuck in an unhealthy routine of binging after starving yourself all day to lose weight. (A common culprit for the stress-induced as they fall asleep in frustration and anger.) See Why Stress Reduction is Critical for Weight Loss
Stress doesn’t come from overeating alone. Or even the fear of overeating. You’ve probably felt stress by simply thinking about how you wouldn’t be able to eat. Not to mention, there’s just so much to keep track of! How is anyone supposed to get to the gym, buy new running shoes, get a pill, buy a gym membership, drink more water, stop eating dessert, and do everything else without any stress? Doesn’t that just scream stress?
With so many stressful factors on the line, how on earth can you possibly curb them as you lose weight?
When you choose to focus on and change only one unhealthy behavior, fears and frustrations fall to the side. Choose any one behavior and apply it consecutively for 28 days. Our stress builds and accumulates daily if we feel the continuous need to apply every single weight loss tactic we’ve ever heard of, and all at once. Frankly, you may find that slowing down and choosing only one behavior seems counter-productive. But if you really want to actually maintain weight loss after you’re done “dieting,” you’ve got to change your habits. Habits, not simply behaviors.
Make Healthy Habits Instinctive
No one becomes overweight overnight. An unhealthy body lives an unhealthy lifestyle. An unhealthy body must be taught to live a healthy lifestyle if that body is going to undergo a maintainable change. Have you ever wondered how some fit people just instinctively reach for a glass of water instead of a Coke? They don’t seem to miss the Coke either. They’ve made drinking water a habit (something instinctive and subconscious… and frankly, very enjoyable). Then there are others who reach for a water, but they have to think about it, and they really want that Coke. That’s what a lot of dieters do. They lose weight for a little while—for as long as they have the discipline to “wait” for the Coke.
Consciously reaching for a water instead of a Coke is a good behavior. But it’s hard. And that’s all it is—a behavior. The moment they “go on a diet,” though they do indeed make healthy changes, it is presumed that they will “go off it” too. And the healthy changes end. Dieters tell themselves, I just have to wait this much longer, and then I can have my Coke. Ultimately, they lose the weight, and gain it back. Though they lose weight, they still live the lifestyle of their unhealthy, past selves, which obviously causes them to return to exactly as they were. This is why dieting stresses us out so much. How can anyone diet stress-free when they’re constantly worried about the pain of change or sacrifice? The most stressful thing about dieting isn’t going without food. It’s the fear that stresses us out. The most stressful thing about dieting, is dieting. But the pain of change lasts only a second. It is the fear of the pain of change that makes you hesitate and freeze up. That’s when we build stress.
Focusing on Positive Change
Unhealthy stress is unnecessary. If we can focus on the effects of positive change rather than the fear of change, stress falls to the side. That’s why we emphasize visualizing your ideal shape. Focus on where you want to be. Where you’re going to be. Not on the list of things you think you need to check off in order to someday get there.
David Meine teaches his clients to begin to live a healthy lifestyle (in their overweight bodies) as though they were already at the pant and shirt size they desire. Because he retrains the brain to accept healthy habits, clients learn to live healthily and maintain weight loss before they ever arrive at their ideal body shapes. Once they arrive, they’ve already changed their lifestyles. That’s why IdealShape has such a high rate for clients maintaining their weight loss.
David’s 10 habits that prevent individuals from losing weight and keeping it off:
- Eating and drinking too much sugar
- Not drinking enough water
- Not getting adequate sleep
- Allowing mental sabotage from self and others
- Not being able to visualize the end result
- Eating too quickly, mindlessly
- Not eating 5 small meals a day (or three small meals and two snacks)
- Inability to deal with stress
- Lack of exercise
As you understand which negative habits have formed in your life, you’ll begin to identify a single habit that would create results for you. When you work on the habit that is holding you back, you’ll see how everything else begins to fall into place and stress becomes a non-issue.
Allow Yourself the Privilege of Creating ONE Permanent Change
Unhealthy habits are formed deep in the subconscious mind. You’ve got to retrain your body to subconsciously choose healthy behavior over unhealthy behavior. This is how you make healthy habits your lifestyle. You may have a problem drinking soda, for example. (It’s a common one.) Here’s the secret. Begin to break your unhealthy habit by behaving differently for 28 days in a row. Stop drinking soda (or lessen your intake, whatever you feel is best for your situation) for 28 consecutive days. Don’t focus on other things. That creates stress. Just allow yourself to make one solid, permanent change. As you do so, the healthy behavior you adopt (replacing your soda with water or replacing soda with an activity that distracts you) will become a healthy, controllable habit in your life. Say goodbye to soda! Say goodbye to stress! Say hello to a healthy, new you!