One of my clients told me she believed that when she judged and chastised herself and called herself names it motivated her to be better. But, she had to admit that she wasn’t getting the results she wanted with this process. I asked her – how is being miserable and hating on yourself helpful? I asked her to start recognizing that voice within – her inner judge.
I told her the truth: you can’t hate yourself thin. You can’t force yourself to be something you’re not today or any day. You can’t judge or castigate yourself to be someone or something else. In order for you to get to your weight goal (or any goal) you need to STOP hating where or who you are and decide to LOVE YOURSELF RIGHT NOW.
Why does hating your body sabotage weight loss results?
When you have the volume on your inner judge turned way up, you will sabotage your goal whether it’s weight loss or some other goal. Why? it’s really simple…judging yourself and hating on yourself causes STRESS, INSECURITY and ANXIETY and what do many of us do when we feel these things? We over drink or we overeat (many times both).
Is this you?
Do you criticize your body? Do you find little flaws and think about them all day or just wish you could be thinner or different in some way? That is your inner judge and she works full time. You have probably been listening to her for 20, 30, 40 years or more. You can’t expel your judge but you can begin to coexist peacefully with her (and turn her volume WAY DOWN).
Judging is what the brain does – it keeps you alive
Never judge yourself for your stressful thoughts – that is just another sneaky way to judge and feel bad about yourself. Your inner judgmental voice is TOTALLY NORMAL. It comes from a part of your brain that is keeping you alive.
There is a way to peacefully coexist with your judge with the most powerful tool you have: mindfulness.
Notice when you are having self-critical thoughts. They might sneak up on you. You might find yourself wondering “is my butt too big?” or “why is my hair so flat today?” or thinking thoughts like “everyone else in my exercise class looks so much thinner than me.” You might even go into full-blown self hate. First, STOP and take 2-5 deep breaths and notice your thoughts. Remember, these are your thoughts. They are not proven facts. Then start the inquiry, the questioning of your thoughts. How are these thoughts making you feel? Are they are causing feelings of stress and insecurity or feelings of calm, confidence, happiness, love? Then decide to feel amazing about yourself RIGHT NOW. Yes, decide. If that feels false to you tell yourself that you are WORKING on feeling amazing about yourself. Or give yourself love and appreciation for aspects of your body (internal or external) that you really do love. How about “I love that I can breathe so deeply.” Find one thing today that you appreciate about your body. This is such an amazing and effective process and you can do it anytime or anywhere – in your car, at work, in the dressing room, really anywhere. I promise you that feeling good about yourself right now will not decrease your motivation to lose weight. It will help you stay on track to get to your goals.