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We think we can will ourselves into actions that will help us lose weight, but insidious thought patterns we’re unaware of dictate our actions at the end of the day.
Here are five thought patterns that doom us for weight loss failure 9 times out of 10.
1. We fall into “black and white” thinking patterns.
We’re either on the wagon or we’re off. And when we’re off, we’re off to the races. Black and white thinking will always sabotage us when it comes to food. Our behaviors around food need to be flexible, or they will never be sustainable in the long run.
2. We think willpower is a thing, when it’s really not.
Dieting is the ultimate test of “man versus nature.” (Hint: nature always wins.) We think we can control our own momentary biological needs with a meal plan or dietary regimen, but our biological instincts almost always overcome willpower eventually.
3. We resist dealing with feelings.
If you find yourself eating for emotional reasons (e.g. I had a bad day at work, get me a donut), willpower is even more of a joke. No amount of willpower will overcome a strong emotional need for food if we’re not addressing the underlying feelings head-on.
4. We obsess about our weight.
When we’re focused on our weight as the goal of healthful eating, we inadvertently tell ourselves that we’re “not good enough now,” and that we don’t deserve to enjoy ourselves in the present moment. When we don’t fully love and respect ourselves “in the now,” we eat piles of macaroni and cheese for no reason.
5. We think eating well is a chore and that it’s the pleasure in food that causes us to sin, so to speak.
WRONG. Pleasure and enjoyment are required for healthful eating. We are biologically programmed to enjoy food, and denying that causes huge problems for us mentally, emotionally and physically.
Here’s the thing that no tells you:
Pleasure actually guides us toward making choices, especially when we have emotional or volatile relationships with food. If this concept seems totally counter-intuitive and you don’t believe me, check out my guide “How To Not Eat Chocolate Cake,” which explains how learning to enjoy food (and life) will end your struggle with weight once and for all.