When it comes to weight loss, often we are either looking everywhere for someone to give us a set of rules that will help us succeed or we are in complete rebellion of the rules we already know are proven to work.
Either way we are left feeling disempowered and defeated.
The truth is this: Diets don’t work because dieting is a psychologically temporary situation—the minute you go on a diet you are waiting to get off it. The fact that you are painfully “sticking” to a diet is a recipe for failure because there is no doubt that ultimately you will succeed in breaking free from its perceived tyranny and revert to unproductive eating habits.
However, if it weren’t for that psychological flaw, dieting, in fact, would work, because what we are needing to succeed in living at our ideal weight is balance, structure, and I’m sorry to use the dreaded word: rules.
In fact, studies point out that it doesn’t even matter which diet you are on—if you stick with it, you will lose weight!
Think about it. Don’t you stick to rules in all the areas of your life where you are successful?
We may not like it, but if we don’t want to get hurt, we follow the rules of the road when driving. Because we want to keep our jobs, we adhere to office policies, whether we agree with them or not. Even though we may feel like punching someone who makes us angry, generally the rule that warns against physical aggression holds us back.
So how can we think that we don’t need to follow rules if we want to live healthfully and at our ideal weight? If we choose to eat whatever we want, whenever we want, without consistent, sustained activity despite the fact that we know that the only way to lose weight is to eat less and exercise more, we are going to get results that are the opposite of what we want.
It’s funny that many of us will spend years researching weight loss, seeking weight loss advice and even resorting to bariatric, gastric bypass or lap-band surgery, even while having the full, conscious understanding that weight loss is only achieved by one means: eating less food than you are burning off.
There is no other formula. The issue then becomes, why is it that you know this to be true and yet continue to look for some mysterious solution or answer to your problem of carrying around excess weight?
The answer is that you have not accepted the undisputable facts because you are certain that if you ate less, selected healthier foods and increased activity, you would feel deprived, denied and unhappy.
What if that assumption were false? I have worked with thousands of people all over the country to help them lose weight, both with Gastric Bypass Hypnosis Surgery, private hypnosis weight loss sessions and my at home weight loss system. I can’t tell you how many times people who have lost even over 100 lbs. told me the process was easily and effortless!
How is this possible? Losing weight is easy only when you change your thinking about yourself and food. When your thoughts about food and yourself change, your behavior naturally changes, and it doesn’t have to be a struggle.
Success is only possible when you follow certain rules. The difference is that once your subconscious thinking shifts, following the rules you already know, consciously, will work becomes second nature.
The reason why some people describe their experience with self-hypnosis and weight loss as a “miracle” is because there is seemingly no effort when it comes to following the rules.
However, you can be assured that they are only losing weight, not because any “miracle” has occurred, but because they are eating less and exercising more.
The only way, I have found, for rules to be effective, is when you decide on them yourself. If they come from outside of you, most likely you will want to rebel against them. I encourage you to make rules for yourself that fit for you, your lifestyle and your health condition.
Here are some basic rules that work for skinny people that you may want to adapt or make your own:
1. Eat only when you are physically hungry.
Your body is a holy temple, not a garbage pail. Think of putting food in your body the way you put gasoline in your car. Food has a purpose and that is to give you energy. Never overstuff yourself or eat when you are not physically hungry.
How do you know when you are hungry? Some people hear their stomach growling, but many others experience symptoms such as irritability, weakness, dizziness, feeling spacey and shaky, or having an inability to focus or concentrate.
Honor your body’s wisdom and listen to the way it is communicating with you. Never eat for emotional reasons. Let yourself feel your emotions fully but don’t eat to numb them.
Write them out, talk to a trusted friend, or use music, art, movement or gardening to calm yourself, but never eat because you are bored, lonely, tired, angry, worried, sad or afraid.
2. Eat the foods that nourish you but that you enjoy, in a balanced way.
Food is meant to nourish and sustain you. However, that doesn’t mean that the food you eat should taste bad. On the contrary, food is one of the pleasures in life. The good news is your taste for food can change.
Julie and her Mother, Carrie, used my hypnosis program as a jumpstart to losing 113 lbs and 55 lbs. The next day after starting the program, Julie told me she was craving spinach and Carrie was craving carrots. Those new cravings broke their usual eating patterns!
I never thought that I’d prefer a salad to a pizza, but I do. The important secret is that I prepare the salad so that it tastes REALLY good – there’s no “diet” food there! I use my favorite lettuces and chopped vegetables, home-made olive and flax seed oil dressing, topped with fresh roasted chicken thighs, blue cheese or goat cheese, delicious roasted nuts, herbs and sea salt.
The key to success is never deprive yourself. Make sure the foods you select are healthy foods from the earth with high quality protein, but prepare them in a way that makes them scrumptious to you!
Minimize or eliminate processed, empty-calorie foods and liquids that only increase hunger and perpetuate food addiction.
3. Do some activity every day.
You may enjoy going to the gym and having a good work out, but if joining the fitness center isn’t for you, don’t use that as an excuse to be a couch potato.
No matter what your health condition is you can probably do something. Most people can manage water exercise and that’s a great place to start.
Reframe your thinking about exercise. You don’t have to struggle and suffer. Instead, remember how when you were a child you used to love to run and play? Were you upset when the bell rang for recess? Of course, not! You wanted to move because you were intuitively connected to your natural inclination to shake off stress physically and recharge your battery with activity.
Now you simply need to get back in touch with that natural joy of movement. Think of something you enjoy: perhaps a walk in nature, or dancing to some of your favorite music. Maybe you’d like to be more social and play tennis or go bowling. Are there some kids in your life that would like to roller blade with you? The possibilities are endless! Instead of forcing yourself to exercise, you can begin to look forward to the time of day when you “get to move your body!”
There’s no way to get around following rules when it comes to being successful in all areas of your life. The key to losing weight and keeping it off lies in changing your thinking. There is no “miracle” out there—no pill, no surgery and no diet that can do it for you.
Even people who have had gastric bypass surgery and had their physiology actually altered can grow their stomach right back if they don’t first change their thinking.
When you change your thinking about yourself, food and your life, you can create weight loss rules that work for you. Then you can stop searching for that “miracle” weight loss gimmick, and realize that any weight loss aid whether it’s hypnosis, an eating plan, a support group, or a gym membership, is only a tool to help you attain the key to success: a new mind-set that allows you to love and value yourself enough to make the necessary shifts to lose weight permanently and change your life!
Get my program here: Permanent Weight Loss
Rena Greenberg has had the privilege over the last 25+ years to work with over 100,000 people in 75 medical centers to help them lose weight without surgery.