25 Jul 5 Things You Must Give Up If You Struggle With Weight Loss
You might think you have to give up certain foods if you struggle with weight loss.
It’s not the case.
You need to give up certain beliefs and perspectives.
Having the right mindset before you start a weight loss journey is going to help set you up for success rather than failure.
This article is going to explain 5 ways of thinking that you need to give up if you struggle with weight loss.
Ps. When I refer to weight loss I’m also referring to fat loss. They are not the same thing but for the purpose of keeping this article simple, they are. If you want to know more about why they are different you should read this.
5 Things You Must Give Up If You Struggle With Weight Loss
1. Expecting Overnight Results
Disappointing yourself is the worst feeling ever.
When you do, it’s easy to think you’re not good enough or you can’t do it.
At the start of your weight loss journey you’ll be extra motivated to go all out because you think that your results are around the corner and you don’t need to go hard for too long.
This is only setting you up to be disappointed.
When you don’t see the results you think you should be getting based on the work you’re putting in, you’ll start to lose hope.
You’ll make up some excuse like you don’t have enough motivation. And you’ll probably give up too soon.
You don’t need motivation. You need to set yourself up with realistic expectations.
Fat loss takes time. It’s very unlikely you’ll see the results you want to see in a week, and it certainly won’t happen overnight. No matter what kind of diet you put yourself on, it’s going to take weeks to months.
You may as well start with gradual changes to your current routine that are achievable. Once you know you can do these, start adding some more changes if needed.
If you struggle with weight loss, it’s not usually a matter of needing to do more to speed things up. You simply need to have more patience.
2. Chasing Perfection
You don’t need to be perfect to lose weight.
Having the best diet plan or exercise routine isn’t essential.
You don’t even need to stick to the plan perfectly.
You’ll get results if you’re 80% consistent or if you’re 100% consistent.
There’s no need to chase perfection.
Focus on all the small forms of progress you’re making.
These are what will add up to the big results you want to see.
Progress might be getting all your workouts in for the week even though you didn’t feel like it.
It might be skipping your workout and not feeling guilty about it.
Progress could be choosing to have a chicken salad for lunch instead of a burger even though you were out with friends and everyone else was getting a burger.
It could be staying on track and not going on a binge when you had a bad day.
All these little changes in behaviour and how you respond in certain situations matter!
They matter even more than what the scale says. They’re what will help you not only lose weight, but keep it off too.
If you’re too focused on being perfect, the first thing you’ll notice when you fall off track is your lack of perfection. You’ll feel bad about yourself, probably miss out on seeing progress that’s meaningful, and you might even give up.
Your imperfection doesn’t matter. What does matter is if you see yourself as a failure from one moment of being imperfect. That’s when you’re more likely to sabotage yourself or quit altogether.
3. Black and White Thinking
No one wants to feel guilty when they eat an ice cream. And you don’t have to.
There’s no such thing as a good or bad food. Or at least, they’re only bad because you’ve attached that meaning to a particular food.
It’s better to see food as calorie dense or nutrient dense. You should probably eat mostly nutrient dense foods for weight loss. However, including some calorie dense foods in the right quantity isn’t going to make you unhealthy or ruin your weight loss progress.
When it comes to weight loss, you’re not just working with your body, you also have to work with the environment it’s in.
Your environment is always changing.
Black and white thinking doesn’t allow for you to accomodate these changes.
You need to be able to adapt your diet or exercise routine to changing situations in your life.
Then you’ll be able to keep making progress towards your weight loss goal regardless of what’s happening around you.
For example, if you suddenly come under a lot of stress at work and have a tendency to stress eat, rather than staying in a calorie deficit, it could be a good idea to come back up to your maintenance calories for a period of time.
That will help to reduce some of the stress load on your body (dieting is a stress too). It will also allow you to fit more food into your diet without going completely off track.
It’s better to eat at maintenance and maintain your weight for a bit. If you feel pressured to stick to your calorie deficit and overeat one day, then you’re going to feel like a failure which might not help you.
There’s no right or wrong way to lose weight. But you do want to use a method that will work for your body and allow you to feel as empowered as possible throughout the process of changing yourself. What this is exactly will depend on you.
You need to be in a calorie deficit for weight loss- that’s a principle. But there are various methods you can use to get to that result. If counting calories isn’t for you, you can try any of these methods mentioned in this.
There are shades of grey that exist between black and white.
Aim to start working in this region. You’re more likely to achieve things here than what you are at the extreme ends.
4. Jumping To Conclusions
Getting into a habit of pausing before you react is going to help you with all aspects of your life including weight loss.
Jumping to conclusions is reactive.
Often it’s based out of fear and will lead to an undesirable outcome.
You need to give this up if you struggle with weight loss.
For example, if you freak out every time you see the scale go up, that’s not going to help you.
Rather than jumping to conclusions like “OMG I shouldn’t have eaten that donut yesterday”, then restrict yourself for the next few days until your weight drops again, you’d be better to pause and think about why the scale might have gone up.
It’s probably not because you’ve gained fat. It could be because you ate more carbs than usual yesterday so you’re holding onto extra water and glycogen. There are so many reasons it could have gone up, which are detailed in this.
If you’re an emotional eater, rather than reacting straight away to your emotions, aim to get into a habit of pausing and observing your thoughts:
Where are they coming from and are they reasonable?
Is eating that really going to make you feel better after?
By pausing, you’ll give yourself a chance to distract yourself with another action that is more aligned with your goals (like going for a walk instead of eating).
There will be moments in your weight loss journey where things aren’t moving as fast as you’d like. You have to push through these moments and stay consistent anyway.
If you jump to conclusions like “it never works for me” or “this is pointless”, you’re more likely to give up, and that’s when something doesn’t work. If you kept going, you’d probably find that you were making progress all along- just a lot slower than you thought should be the case.
5. Playing Victim
Instead of being that person where “nothing works for me” start being that person that makes things work for you.
You have to start showing up for yourself even when you’re having a bad day or you don’t feel like it.
Just because you haven’t been able to lose weight in the past, doesn’t mean it won’t work for you ever. If you eat too much one day, it doesn’t mean you’ve ruined your progress and you need to feel bad about yourself.
What you focus on grows.
If you skipped a workout or went way over your calorie target, accept it, learn a lesson from it, and then move your focus back to what you’ve done right or what you can do right the next day.
You have the power to change your life, no matter who you are.
Start believing in yourself and make it happen.
Having the right mindset is going to help you stay consistent and be patient enough to achieve weight loss results that last.
If you struggle with weight loss, you need to give up the search for quick fixes and instead work on improving your mindset.
Reflect on your thoughts and behaviours around your own weight loss journey. Hopefully this article helps you see areas you can start working on.
If you need any advice you can reach out to me here.