You have set your biggest goal for 2013. You want to finally lose the weight and really feel healthy once and for all. You start counting calories and you increase your exercise. You are excited because you are seeing a change in your body, and you feel motivated. You have cut out sugar and foods that trigger your cravings, and you feel certain that this time your plan will work.
You do lose weight, and your confidence increases, but by mid- February you are sick of grilled chicken and steamed vegetables, and you are far less motivated. You feel deprived, and defeated, and you wonder how you will ever reach your goals. You slowly add the sugar back in, and you find yourself eating convenience foods, rather than focusing on nourishing your body. Slowly the weight creeps back up and you give up, angry at your choices and your body. Then someone suggests you evaluate what is missing and your life changes.
For many, weight loss is like an oasis in the desert, unlikely and just a mirage. People struggle their entire lives trying to understand their body’s subtle cues. They try every weight-loss plan and pill and yet they are still unsuccessful. Why? For one, everyone’s body is very different and oftentimes people treat their nutrition like a “one size fits all” plan. Food allergies, metabolic rate, deficiencies and more can play a role in the body’s ability to lose weight. Forget the science, let’s talk about the soul.
Why are you eating in an unhealthy way to begin with? There is a huge connection between the brain and the gut and what we feel and how we eat. Maybe certain foods provide comfort. For example, dairy is usually equated with mother’s milk and chocolate raises the body’s serotonin, creating an instant mood boost.
Why do you need to use food as an antidepressant? Well first off, you may feel lonely. Today’s society functions in a solitary fashion where human interaction is few and far between. You may eat your meals alone, or behind your desk, or in front of the television. So food fills the void where conversation and connection should be. As a result you eat larger quantities, because you are completely unsatisfied.
You also may be using food as a way to numb your feelings. Maybe you are in an unhealthy relationship, maybe you despise your job, or maybe you just feel lost. You are not alone. Millions are suffering from similar issues, yet instead of talking, you eat or connect to your electronics rather than a human being. If you think about it, when your body is using all of its energy to digest, it is in a sense distracted, and your emotional state almost becomes secondary.
If you really want to lose weight you need to evaluate your entire life. How often do you have quality conversations with a person you are close with? When was the last time you really discussed how you felt? Can you remember the last time you felt absolute bliss or you laughed really hard? Do you enjoy your job? Are you in a healthy relationship? Do you want to be? Do you have an outlet for creativity? Do you meditate or spend time sitting in silence? Do you believe you are living the life you envisioned for yourself? You see, these things measure the weight of your life and are even more important than what you put into your mouth. These elements create balance, harmony and lasting results. The calorie counting and the deprivation can often be a distraction from the core issue.
This year I encourage you to try something new – a bliss diet. Stop removing things from your life and, start by adding more in. Begin with joy and really feel it. Search for happiness in your job and expect it. Do something that makes you feel alive. Look for a partner that adds value to your life. Practice self- love. Laugh more. Treat your body with care. Take a mental break and learn the meaning of unwind. Take up a hobby. Dream big and believe in the power of your manifestations. Most of all, stop putting a Band-Aid on your body and start living. Now watch your body change, this time for good.