THE THERAPY ROOM: Self-sabotaging behaviors and weight loss goals

Posted on 21 June 2018 by LeslieM

Self-sabotaging behaviors create problems and interfere with goals such as dieting. Do you repeat the same patterns of behavior over and over again expecting different results? You might be demonstrating self-sabotaging behavior.

Weeding through endless weight loss or dieting information can leave a person feeling lost, desperate and overwhelmed since losing weight means you must invest time and understand what health, nutrition and fitness means specifically for you.

Many people jump from diet to diet to include ones endorsed by medical and mental health experts, celebrities and professional athletes. Such qualified and well-known people would never think about steering us in the wrong direction? Or, would they be promoting a diet because they are rewarded for agreeing to associate their celebrity to a weight loss diet program? The simple truth is that we need to truly comprehend what dieting or fat loss, and the physiology of metabolism, means specifically for us.

According to The Bulletproof Diet by Dave Asprey, 90 percent of people who work out in gyms do not train properly and people who join fitness clubs on average quit after 3-4 months. It is humbling to face the fact that, when it comes to a successful health and fitness lifestyle, one must demonstrate daily motivation and commitment.

Why do we give up so easily on our diet goals? Why do we blissfully indulge in many self-sabotaging behaviors? One must reprogram thinking to make harder choices and that can be very uncomfortable.

Saying ‘I will’ allows one to consciously think, feel, behave and move away from doing something one might regret, such as going through a fast food drive-thru to buy a breakfast sandwich versus making a healthy breakfast at home. One must also say no to a midnight snack or getting up in the middle of the night to eat. ‘I want’ is the ability to remember why when temptations strike and one can therefore focus on long term goals and learn to want more than a fast food breakfast sandwich or a midnight, or middle of the night, snack. Leaning into ‘I will’ and ‘I want’ empowers one to look temptations right in the eye and say, “No way, not now…” and those temptations will lose their power.

Stress is yet another factor causing self-sabotaging diet goals. The more stress we feel, the more likely we are to overeat, over-spend or over-indulge and soon we sadly regret such actions. Mental or physical stress drains us and anything we can do to reduce stress in our lives will help eliminate the potential of self-sabotaging diet goals.

Becoming conscious of any self-sabotaging behaviors that interfere with dieting goals can be the beginning of a new and successful journey in achieving weight loss goals. Remember, change is always possible!

Dr. Julia Breur is a licensed marriage and family therapist with a private clinical psychotherapy practice in Boca Raton. Further information is available at www.drjuliabreur.com.

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