If you are someone who has been on a diet your whole life then you probably do not have a loving functional relationship with food. You probably know more about nutrition than some professionals, however, you just cannot seem to release yourself from the obsession of food and body. Through my practice I have seen common mindset issues, which often sabotage even the most diligent efforts.
Dieter’s Mindset #1: “Eating something just because it is healthy.”
This may sound like the ideal plan to lose weight however, it often backfires! When you eat something “just because it is healthy”, you may be positively reinforcing some negative core beliefs like, “I don’t deserve to enjoy my food” or “I deserve to suffer”.
You may unconsciously think you have to suffer because you have this over weight body. In reality, you have the over-weight body because you are suffering.
Although you really do love food, and why not, it is a good thing and it does keep the body alive; often when you eat there is a blanket of shame and tension attached to every bite. This emotional charge often leads to feelings of insecurity and acting out in sabotaging ways, like mindless grazing.
Dieter’s Mindset #2: “Ignoring or not listening to your body’s natural hunger signals.”
Often times, when I interview a client for the first time they tell me they cannot understand why they are over weight because they really aren’t that hungry, most of the time.
When you do not have a healthy relationship with food; i.e. one that is NOT laced with shame and frustration, you will try to ignore the hunger signals in an attempt to control your appetite because you are trying to “be good”. This behavior allows for an unhealthy length of time to lapse between meals or worse, you may skip meals altogether.
This is usually an attempt to trying to get away with the fact that the body needs food. It is crucial to come to terms with the fact that the body needs to eat in order for the mind and body to function optimally.
It is always most effective to develop a balanced rhythm of eating. Eating every three to four hours will balance the blood sugar and therefore set up the natural conditions for the body to release weight.
Dieter’s Mindset #3 “Not eating enough food during a meal”
Once again, this behavior stems from having a dysfunctional relationship you’re your food and body. As a life long dieter you may have actually become afraid and maybe even very angry at food, as food has become the necessary evil.
Mealtime denotes a certain level of conscious eating; therefore when you are more consciousness you can fool yourself into thinking that you eat like a slim person. This tactic will backfire in either of two ways.
The first way this backfires is you will unconsciously give yourself permission to eat empty calories later on. The second way being, there is never a sense of closure on a meal. In this scenario, food becomes the open-ended focal point, thereby leading to even more obsession and frustration.
In contrast, if you would fill up on real food, while giving yourself permission to enjoy every bite, and feeding yourself from a place of self-love and self-care, it often leaves no room for empty calories.
The sooner you participate in a mature relationship with food, the quicker you will release yourself from the food prison and begin to commit to a healthy lifestyle which will ultimately give you the body you desire.
In short, the quicker you can release what you think you know and focus more on what you feel in your body, the sooner you will create the body of your dreams.