Mind over body: get your head on board to lose weight

Woman Embracing Healthy Food Choices

Losing weight is about burning more calories than you consume. Many times we forget this simple point and end up wondering why we gain all the weight back soon after dieting. Just as important as our daily food intake and energy expenditure are, so too our state of mind is when approaching permanent weight loss goals.

You can have a library full of reference books, or a chef and even a personal trainer at their disposal just like celebrities do. But if you’re not mentally ready to lose weight and don’t have a diet plan that supports the psychological aspects of dieting, the chances for success are next to nothing.

Mind-Over-Body Approach to Weight Loss

Woman Embracing Healthy Food ChoicesIt takes more than just saying “I want to lose 10 pounds” for the mind to be ready to exercise its power over the body. Most people who are overweight or unhealthy because of their diet have a strong desire to be in better shape, yet still can’t succeed. In order to make substantial changes in your weight, you have to get the mind to the point that it controls the body rather than the body telling the mind what it wants.

That’s not to say that you should ignore the signals that your body sends to the brain about what it needs. Cravings for certain foods often indicate a nutritional deficiency and can trigger the individual to intake the needed nutrients. The mind-over-body approach to weight loss means that you have to be mentally strong.

Here are some ways to put your mind to work in your weight loss efforts and stay mentally strong for the long term. Take some time and really think about the following four points and how you approach weight loss. You may find the key that will help you succeed once and for all.

1. Connect to your self-worth

Don’t let your physical appearance define who you are. You are so much more than what you see in the mirror. Take some time to acknowledge your skills, talents and abilities. If you find this hard to do, have a heart-to-heart talk with a friend who really knows you and can help you open your eyes. If you are aware of your self-worth as an individual, then no matter what you weigh you will not feel any different about yourself when you lose weight.

2. Choose the right reasons

Measuring Tape with Weights and AppleMake sure you want to lose weight for the right reasons. If you are trying to lose weight in order to become a stronger, healthier person—and even a better looking person—then you will be successful.

If your only reason to lose weight is because you think it will magically make bad situations in your life better, then your chances of success are not as likely.

Don’t try to lose weight to please someone else. Weight loss has to be for you in order for it to be lasting. Trying to please a parent or spouse might motivate you to start, but it won’t work for lifetime maintenance. As soon as someone or something disappoints you, you may find yourself turning to food for fulfillment. If you want to lose weight because you really care about yourself, you can!

3. Feed on positive thoughts

Give the brain a healthy dose of positive thoughts. Just as you would feed your body healthy food, the brain needs healthy thoughts to be nourished and to thrive. Let your diet feed your mind. If you have started a diet and failed because you couldn’t stick with it, then chances are it was not providing nourishment for your brain. Once you’ve decided you want to make changes, it should be the responsibility of the right diet plan to incorporate support that feeds you mentally as well as physically in order for you to keep your spirits up and stick with it.

If you find you can’t, then the diet failed you. You didn’t fail at dieting. So don’t look back at the past; look forward and align with a plan that feeds your mind as well as your body.

4. Embrace a long-term attitude

Woman Smiling Over Weight LossMany diets claim to offer quick results. That’s okay, but be prepared for a plateau. That is a natural part of the body balancing mechanism. The scale does not tell the whole story. Diets that promise rapid weight loss can get people mentally psyched up in the beginning. When they see the results start to slow as the body fights to keep from starving, it can lead to feelings of discouragement.

Remember, when you support the mind as part of your weight loss approach, you will easily support your body. Weight loss that is healthy and permanent involves a diet plan that feeds the mind as it nourishes the body back to balance.

By connecting to your inner self worth, choosing to obtain healthy weight for the right reasons, feeding positive thoughts to your mind, and embracing your weight loss goals with a long term attitude, you are sure to succeed.