The world of weight loss is insanely confusing.
Google "the key to lasting weight loss"and there are 1001 different solutions that come up.
Everyone says something different: cut out carbs, don't eat anything processed, use ideal combinations of food, limit food after 7 p.m., incorporate more fat, never eat sugar, go on this detox, try this 10-day cleanse, etc.
And believe me, I've tried them all. Because for about 12 years of my life, all I wanted was to lose the weight that I kept gaining (and losing and gaining again).
For so long, I operated out of this state of desperation; when I lost the weight, I was ecstatic. Yet, I lived in this perpetual fear that the pounds would pile back on (which they did), so I was constantly monitoring it, thinking about it, and obsessing over it.
How many times have you gained and lost the same 10, 20, 30 pounds over the years?
When we constantly fight the same weight battle over and over, something's just not working for us.
In order to truly resolve "weight issues," we have to look in a different place.
The weight loss I'm talking about is more than the "let's just get skinny for bathing suit season" type of change.
It's the "bring your mind, body, and spirit back into balance so that you effortlessly release weight and don't have to think about it every single day" kind of weight loss.
What I'm talking about is resolving all of the baggage underneath the weight: changing your beliefs, learning to cope with emotionally tough situations, being in discomfort, balancing your blood sugar, and all of the "stuff" behind bringing your body back into balance.
Because when your body is in balance on all levels-physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, that is when weight loss occurs.
Not the "Oh, I can fit into this slinky dress for the wedding" weight loss, but the lasting kind.
The kind where you don't have to try so hard, put in so much effort, and punish yourself to get where you want to go. The kind where it "just happens" because our bodies are meant to be at a natural, comfortable weight for our body type. So, how do we lose weight and keep it off? The answer may not be what you think.
The one thing all of the weight-loss programs out there are missing is this: they don't promise lasting weight loss. They expect you to fail, and then you'll come back to use their services again.
With any of these "lose the weight quick" programs-Jenny Craig, laxatives, Slimgenics, diet pills, Weight Watchers, etc, the idea is that you have to keep using the program, the service, the whatever.
Yes, you may lose weight. But then you transition back to "real life" and inevitably gain it back. So, the key to lasting weight loss is twofold:
1. You must go deeper.
Lasting weight loss is never about the outside. Yes, of course, we all want to look good and be at our ideal weight. But it's not about following an exact food plan, counting calories until we're blue in the face, and adhering to some strict regime so we force the weight off.
True body balance comes from the inside. It's about bringing your body back into a state of balance, so it naturally releases weight.
Not from punishment, force, and will-power, but from caring enough about yourself, about what works for your body, and about taking care of your needs, that your body effortlessly releases its excess weight.
Our bodies want to be at a weight where we feel comfortable.
Look at societies around the world (especially ancient civilizations!). They don't have Weight Watchers, diet programs, and obesity problems. They know how to work with their bodies so they feed it, nourish it, and take care of it at the weight it's meant to be.
So, go deeper into your beliefs, examine why you're trapped in the diet cycle, see where you're stuck and why you aren't moving forward.
It's only by going deeper, by looking at what's behind all the "weight stuff," that brings about lasting change.
2. You have to care more about something else than you do about losing weight. When you're obsessed with losing weight, when it consumes your life, and when it's all you think about, you will never achieve lasting weight loss. Trust me, I have been there. It never lasted.
When you let go of the fight, even just a little bit, that's when change begins to happen.
Think about it: how many times have you heard about when someone wasn't looking for love, that's when they found it? Or when they surrendered and gave up on what they so desperately wanted, that's when they got it?
It is the same with weight loss.
We don't get anywhere from pushing, resisting, forcing, and punishing. When we are constantly fighting our bodies, battling ourselves, hating what we see in the mirror, and living in a state of being exhausted from the fight, that's the signal that we must shift gears.
Find something that matters more to you than being thin. I'm not saying you can't care about your body, your health, and your weight. I'm saying it can't be an all-consuming, obsessive fight that you're battling every day.
When you change your focus to something else, when you care more about your life, something amazing happens...
You don't care so much about weight loss, and that's when you lose weight.
Find something that you can care about more than you being obsessed with a smaller size.
What brings you out of yourself? What allows you to focus on something else? Maybe it's getting back into dance classes, trying a new craft, exploring cool museums in your town, working on being more "present" in your life, or starting a book club.
I don't care what it is -- care more about anything -- God, your mom, your kid, watching comedies, writing a book -- something that allows your to shift your focus out of that all-consuming, obsessive desire to lose weight.
Because when you start to care less about your weight and body, when you let go and surrender even for just a day, that initial shift begins to happen.
I know we all want to feel at ease in our bodies, comfortable with our weight, and in love with ourselves.
When we begin to go deeper, shifting our focus onto finding something we care more about, and releasing some of the fight, we begin to bring our weight and bodies back into balance and achieve natural, lasting weight loss.