Changing the Way We Look at Weight Loss

Although so many seek permanent weight loss, our efforts towards this would be better served even more if we weren't so fixated on it, obsessing over it, or constantly getting on the scale. It's just purely self-defeating. There is no question that weight loss remains a very hot topic and a great influence in our lives. It's not that the phrase should not be used, it's just that we should be more aware to not allow it to debilitate us and cause unnecessary stress which acts to sabotage our weight loss goals.

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If we look at how the dictionary describes the state of losing, to lose, lost, we see the phrases-"To be unable to find: mislay; To be deprived of; To be unable to maintain or keep; To fail to win; be defeated...To rid oneself of: lost five pounds." So we're already starting with a very disempowering word, connected to defeating terms like fail, deprive, and unable. Even in its direct reference to weight as something "to rid oneself of", the word "loss" is still negative in nature, because we normally tend to want to rid ourselves of painful, hurtful, and harmful things. Again all defeating and disempowering word associations.

On the other hand, when we look at the word management in the phrase "weight management", we see the definition as "the act, manner, or practice of managing." When we are managing we are essentially "directing, controlling and handling". Therefore weight management is much more of a power giving term than weight loss. Having to lose weight is a very anxiety, stress producing process in and of itself, because it creates a sense of urgency.

Instead of continually tallying the pounds you've lost, it's better to focus on the end result-the weight you want to be-rather than the over emphasis on losing weight and how much more pounds you still need to lose. I'm not asking that you not desire losing weight. I'm just suggesting a different way of approaching it. Certainly, losing weight is a definite component of weight management if someone feels overweight, as gaining weight would be a component if they were underweight. How much weight they lose or gain will however eventually level off, while their weight management will continue. So weight management is more of a long-term, lifestyle change.

When you are managing your weight you are acquiring lifelong skills which serve to put you more in a position of control, which reduces anxiety and keeps you level-headed and focused. And because the term already has such powerful word associations like "directing" and "handling", you don't feel as defensive about it. Because you start off at a point of "managing your weight", regardless of how much weight you want to lose, you already have positive expectations about reaching your weight goals. You are already in control. Being so focused on pounds and the scale creates the idea that: "I am not there yet", "Why haven't I lost ___ lbs by now?". " I'm never going to loose 20 lbs by Christmas." "Who am I kidding, everybody can see I'm still fat".

All of this are components of a diet mentality. There is a reason why 95% of diets don't work. For goodness sake, please stop beating yourself up and hand over that 'pesky whip of condemnation'. Then begin approaching weight loss and WEIGHT MANAGEMENT in a brand new and refreshing way. There are so many non-diet options out there which promote sustained weight loss and weight management in ways that are healthy and natural. On the occasion when diets do work, they don't teach you how to maintain the weight you have lost. You need approaches which empower you to maintain your desired weight for more than a limited duration of time.

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