You’ve been trying to lose weight for what seems like forever.
You hit your stride then BAM! Self-sabotage.
After lots of anger, some tears, and a few bingeing episodes, you go back to square one vowin that this time it will stick.
You’re sick and tired of “falling off the wagon” and you have to get a grip on the food situation.
Then it happens again. Self-sabotage.
You even KNOW you’re doing it! You know that you’re sabotaging your hard work in the gym and all the healthy eating you’ve been doing and can’t understand why this keeps happening.
We’re about to get real here. So take a deep breath……
It’s because there is some part of you that feels undeserving, like you’re not worth it. Some part of you the feels like you can’t actually do it.
I see this happen all the time with my clients in relation to relationships, work and especially with fat loss.
They finally start dating someone wonderful after waiting for so long and then list all the things they don’t like about the person and the reasons why it probably won’t work. And guess what? It doesn’t work. Self-sabotage at it’s finest.
They think they’ll never get the promotion or raise so why bother asking? After all, it’s easier to just stay where they are, where it’s comfortable, even though it kinda sucks. Self-sabotage strikes again.
Self-sabotage is also never more apparent than when someone embarks on a fat loss journey. They join a program or start a diet all gung-ho that THIS will be the one that sticks, but there’s also the lurking thought in the back of their mind that it probably won’t work, so it doesn’t. Or they hire a personal trainer only to finish their session, go home and binge on pizza and ice cream ( <– this was my past life).
Why? Because their thoughts are not in line with the desired outcome.
When I tell you I was the QUEEN of self-sabotage, I actually look at that as a gross understatement. I would hire a trainer, buy supplements, spend hours in the gym, hours prepping food, hours reading and studying up on the latest weight loss tips and tricks. I had all the best tools right at my fingertips.
So I’d hang in there for a few weeks, follow my diet, do my workouts, get some results, then….pizzawinechocholatecandybagelsmuffinspoptartscerealtrailmix
Then start the cycle all over again. All the while waiting for the other shoe to drop…waiting for my next binge. THIS WAS THE PROBLEM! More than I wanted to lose weight and more than I loved being in the gym, I was filled with self-doubt that I could actually achieve what I was setting out to do.
By waiting for the other shoe to drop, I was indirectly telling myself that eventually I would binge again and I’d have to start over.
I certainly wasn’t an overnight success in changing my thinking (hint: no one is) but I can’t stress how important this is if you want to achieve your goals. If we have even just an inkling that we can’t, then we won’t. You’ve heard that quote “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right” right? IT’S TRUE. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty here and talk about HOW to tackle this beast!
How to Change Your Thoughts
1. Become aware of your thoughts.
Sounds simple, right? But when we have literally hundreds of thousands of thoughts going through our minds at any given time, it can be tricky until you’ve practiced. At this point, you might not even be aware of how you think about yourself.
Let’s say for example, you’re someone who struggles with nighttime eating. Every day you promise yourself that you won’t snack your face off after dinner and you even get your roommates or partner on board to help you stop. Yet when you make that promise and get your army ready to help, you have that quick afterthought of “I know I’m just going to find a way to do it anyway.” This right here is what we need to be aware of. We can have every plan in place, have every tool at our disposal, we can have people watching our every move, but if we don’t believe that we can actually stop the behavior, we won’t.
Start listening really closely to that quiet voice of doubt and simply become aware of what its saying. Once you identify your thoughts, you can then begin to challenge them.
2. Challenge your thoughts.
“I don’t know why I bother trying. I’m just going to fail again.”
“I’m going be this weight forever. Even if I lose weight, I just gain it all back and end up back here all over again.”
“Everyone in my family is overweight.”
“It’s going to be too hard.”
“I don’t do mindset work. I just need a meal plan and exercise routine.”
How FREAKING FAMILIAR do these sound?
When I have these thoughts- because it’s not all Positive Polly 24/7 in my universe! – and when I had them in the past (especially the one where I thought mindset was bullsh*t) I started simply saying “Stop it” either out loud or in my head. Then I’d challenge it.
I remember thinking: “Having a treat every day can’t possible help me lose weight. I can’t have chocolate, peanut butter and wine and lose these 20 pounds.” Then, I’d challenge that with “Stop. What you were doing before (which was the restrict & binge cycle) wasn’t working AT ALL. You’re going to try this for a while and if it really doesn’t work then you’ll find something else to try.” Low and behold….it worked :o)
We have to get really good at having these conversations with ourselves and I think it’s incredibly helpful to talk to ourselves like we’re talking to someone else. In a way, you’re kind of separating yourself from the thought and getting another perspective on the situation.
In The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz he says “It is through the word that you manifest everything…what you dream, what you feel, and what you really are, will all be manifested through the word” and this is 100% truth.
Want to finally lose the weight? Want to hit that PR in the gym? Want to land that promotion? Want to find “the one”? Then you’ve got to believe whole-heartedly that you will. There’s no room for self-doubt when it comes to you reaching your goals. If you do the work, believe you’re worth it and become your own biggest fan, nothing can get in your way.