Many persons kick off a diet or fasting program with huge motivation and determination and, indeed, lose large amounts of weight. But, unfortunately, many end up gaining it all back because they have not addressed the psychological aspect of fitness, weight loss and health.
In this article, we will discuss How Our Brains Work, specifically as it relates to keeping the weight off for good through re-programming subconscious belief systems. This way the mind supports begins to support your progress rather than sabotage it.
As I have said in many other articles, most diets do not produce long-lasting results because they are often seen as temporary and not as a permanent change in lifestyle and eating habits. The key phrase here is “permanent change.” That is what these articles aim to help you accomplish.
I spent years in that see-saw of losing weight, gaining weight, losing weight, gaining it back; ad infinitum. Let me tell you, being trapped in this type of vicious cycle – as the years go by and by and by – is extremely crushing and disheartening. It affects the individual physically, mentally and emotionally to the point of hopelessness and total despair.
That is why, after so much trial and failure, I have concluded that my thinking is by far one of the most important elements to successful weight loss. All the fasting in the world will not produce lasting results if my thinking and self-image remains one based on negativity and defeatist belief systems.
Beyond Positive Thought
Positive thought is far from being a new concept. Nor is imagining or visualization. A movie came out recently called The Secret which talked in-depth about this process. It is very interesting and offers good information and motivation.
In short, the premise is that keeping a sharp mental image of what you wish to accomplish can in fact attract the desired result into your life. Now believe me, I am not one to simply bring up a nice little tool I learned and offer it as a frothy solution or panacea.
What we will be looking at here is a combination of tools and techniques that saved me from 15 years of obesity, suicidal behavior, self-loathing and total hopelessness and isolation. So we will dabble into a variety of topics and issues so that, you too, can effect powerful changes in your life as they relate to food, eating, as well as physical and emotional health!
Visualization is one of those tools that, through consistent and stubborn practice, have helped me to break very destructive thinking patterns. For example, take some time and visualize yourself in that particular dress or pant size you want to get into.
Spend some time daily perfecting this mental image – preferably at night before going to bed. One technique that worked very nicely was to put-up pictures around the house of myself when I was younger and thinner.
Other times I would browse through magazines and cut out pictures of sleek and fit male bodies. I then cut out my head from some other picture in my family album and paste it to the fit body image from the magazine. He, He. This actually is very powerful.
I was a chronic food relapser, and just looking at my face in the thin body from the magazine kept me from binging on many occasions. Try it! Paste the pictures in locations such as, the bathroom mirror, the nightstand or desk right next to your bed ( so it is the last thing you see at night and the first image you intake upon awakening), and – of course, the refrigerator door.
Every morning when you get up look at the photos and tell yourself: “This is me. This is how I want to look physically. I can do this.” Build a collage of fit persons taking part in a variety of athletic and recreational activities. Then stick your head into the bodies!
One book that made a huge impact on my life was Shad Helmstetter’s What To Say When You Talk To Yourself
It taught me that I actually have the ability to re-program my subconscious mind and give it direct and to-the-point instructions to support the changes I want to make in my life. I must admit that at first I thought this to be very silly. I am a born skeptic. But pain eventually made me humble and I became willing to try it with an open mind. The results were life-changing.
This is what you can do: *Go to the pharmacy and purchase a package of flashcards. *Fill at least 20 of them with positive affirmations about your weight, health and image. *Write in the present tense so that your mind absorbs the statement as a done deal and not a pie-in-the-sky wish distant in the future.
Here are some examples:
*It is now always easy for me to control my appetite at all times. *It is now always easy for me to say no to _____. (fill it in with your specific trigger foods). Mine was pizza and donuts. Oh, gosh! He-He. *I now lose weight easily and effortlessly at all times. *I now always have supernatural will power to achieve all of my goals at all times. *It is now always easy for me to keep the weight off and I always and easily resist all temptation.
Evaluate the different areas of your life that you wish to change, and form statements directly related to them. These can include self-esteem, spirituality, lifestyle etc… For example:
*I now and always feel great about who I am and am constantly filled with intoxicating passion for life at all times. (Self-Esteem) *I always receive powerful spiritual guidance and discernment to overcome all problems at all times. (Spiritual) *I always am filled with energy and motivation to live and love to be outdoors and active at all times. *It is now easy for me to talk to others and I always feel great about myself in every situation.
You can, of course, add your own. . Once you have them ready, pull them out in the morning in a quiet place and read them to yourself out loud. Allow each word to enter into your mind and imagine the message penetrating into the center of your soul. If you receive negative feedback like: “Yeah, right! Poppycock!” just let the thought pass and continue.
The mind MUST eventually adhere to the directions you give it! If you practice a specific religion, end the session with the prayer of your choice and whatever other inspirational reading you are accustomed to reading. Repeat the process during the day when the mind starts to fill you with opposing thoughts. Culminate the day by doing a final reading immediately before going to bed. Make sure that the very last message your brain receives is a positive one.
If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes
The point I am trying to make in this article is: DO NOT start fasting or dieting and go through all of the detox and hunger pains, yet allowing the mind to just sit idly. In other words, dieting and/or fasting while continuing to feed your mind with negativity will lead you back to where you started which is: weight gain.
Make sure that, while fasting and/or dieting, you also are fasting from negativity and giving your mind a constant feeding of powerful thoughts that go against whatever mental blockages you find have always led you to gain all the weight back.
In psychology, the Bombshell Theory says that If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes. So the message I want to drive to you with all the force I can muster is that: You can fast for 100 days and emerge clean, thin and feeling great.
But if there are no inner changes in the way you think and believe, then it is very likely that the mind will sabotage your progress and take you back to where you started, or worse. Please, dear reader, do not take this message lightly. If you were anything like me, then you are reading this article because you have health and fitness goals that are important to you.
I learned many years ago that Freedom Carries Sacrifice. Fasting and a proper diet are huge parts of the process. But to maintain the freedom gained through these positive changes, it is imperative to directly and forcefully address those internal voices that attempt to destroy your dreams.
Robert Dave Johnston helps persons interested in fasting for weight loss and fitness, having himself recovered from obesity and food addiction.
He is author of The Anti-Prevention Nation e-book – The Obesity Epidemic – How the US is Eating Itself to Death