- My diary: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight
- A reader named Tonina shares a personal fear
- 3 solutions to CHANGE the story of: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight
Last week I got an email from a reader named Tonina.
If I hadn’t burned all my diaries years ago—to punish myself after breaking a diet—I’d swear Tonina had found my you-need-a-key-to-read-me books. Pried one open. Typed out a paragraph. And sent it to me.
Avoiding this scenario wasn’t the reason I burnt my diaries.
I destroyed them because I wanted to be certain I couldn’t change my mind in the morning and retrieve these precious pages from the garbage.
So after my parents left for a dinner party,
I kneeled in front of our fireplace with a stack of
& One Line A Day books.
Then I ripped the pages out in chunks and threw them into the flames.
I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight
My hope was that if I did something irreversible, it would trigger dramatic change.
I wanted to wake myself up from what I *thought* was a lack of willpower, so I could stick to my next (ridiculously restrictive) diet.
I thought that’s how you lose weight.
(Truth: Some healthy eating and exercise info and a little support was all I needed to reach my happy weight, naturally.)
As I watched my words become enveloped in orange and then shrivel into ash, I told myself if losing my diaries hurt:
Why I said: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight
At the end of Grade 9 I said: Don’t ruin another year, Kelly!
Then I said the same thing after Grade 10… and until the end of high school.
Same for each year in university, and so on.
“I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight” was something I worried about All. The. Time.
So I knew losing my diaries would be nothing compared to the regret I’d feel if I didn’t sort out my 30-extra-pounds situation and get on with my life.
The aim of burning my diaries was to show myself what it felt like to not be able to get something back.
I was sure the longer it stung, the more I could sustain the desire to be disciplined.
And the reward of doing something drastic would outweigh the pain.
Back then I didn’t know the Greek myth about the phoenix rising from the ashes. But that’s what I was trying to achieve by burning my diaries.
I was always looking for a more dramatic way to make the stakes higher while drawing a line in the sand to mark the start of a new diet I’d stick to perfectly… a diet that would change my life.
Tonina’s email said: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight
So the other day I opened my email, clicked on the name Tonina (who gave me permission to use her real name “…anything if it will help other people” she said) and this paragraph popped up:
I have lost my way a little….a LOT!!! I just can’t seem to get any momentum going. I desperately want to lose this weight and cannot accept myself at this weight…so I continue to obsess about how I can lose this weight soon! I have ashamedly been jumping from plan to plan but can’t seem to sustain anything…. I am worried I am destined to be fat forever 🙁 Every time I find a new book I hope that this is going to be the one that finally helps me to lose weight- the goal still alludes me…..
Next I want to break down this I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight paragraph to share solutions.
…I was thinking this 20+ years ago in Canada and Tonina is thinking it in Australia now. There must be countless people EVERYWHERE who say to themselves: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight.
The good news?
There’s a solution!
And it’s available to anyone ready to learn.
I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight TRUTH
Sadly I didn’t come across the information (that follows) until years after I torched my diaries. And unfortunately my diary fire incident wasn’t the last of its kind.
But eventually I did STOP the food chaos, reach a healthy weight and get back to everything I love.
You can too.
Here’s what to do if you’re thinking: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight.
I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight Solution #1:
“I desperately want to lose this weight and cannot accept myself at this weight…”
What helped me:
When I stopped following diet rules, tips and tricks and started focusing on health, I lost 30 pounds.
The healthy choice helps you lose weight!
A lot of people think “healthy” means eating tasteless food and being boring (!)
But being healthy means doing stuff your body LOVES.
So what kind of stuff does your body LOVE?
What foods work best with your body?
A variety of NATURALLY full-fat foods like whole milk (3.25% fat), olive oil, avocado and whole eggs. Fresh food like tomatoes, oranges, apples and bananas. Carbohydrates like potatoes, whole grain rice and bread. And the occasional treat, like chocolate.
We’re conditioned to think weight loss is hard. And that you need willpower, discipline and to make sacrifices. But when I let go of the dieting mentality, got good information and was kind to my body, I found reaching a healthy weight such a rewarding + exciting experience.
Be good to your body and it will be good to you.
Get rid of your rice cakes, low-fat food and diet drinks.
Eat ROUGHLY balanced meals made MOSTLY of whole foods!
I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight Solution #2:
“…so I continue to obsess about how I can lose this weight soon!”
What helped me:
I always wanted to lose weight by the school dance, a holiday, when I returned from holiday, before a date on Friday… and so on.
When I’d think: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight I felt an urgency to lose weight NOW!
But trying to lose weight FAST requires unhealthy choices, like restricting what you eat.
And when you cut back on the energy and nutrients your body needs you end up getting hungry.
Eventually you’ll get so hungry it’s easy to overeat.
Then you try to make up for it by skipping the next meal.
Soon you’re caught in the starve-binge-purge cycle which slows down your metabolism and makes you gain weight.
You can break this vicious cycle when you STOP focusing on losing weight FAST and start focusing on building healthy eating and exercise habits.
Lasting weight loss happens when you turn unhealthy habits into healthy habits.
And… whenever you’re making a change in your life, checking in with someone you trust at a regular time each day or week, to report back on your progress (wins, slip-ups and areas for improvement) helps you stay on track and reach goals.
The American Society of Training and Development (ASTD) did a study on accountability and found that you have a 65% chance of completing a goal if you commit to someone. And if you have a specific accountability appointment with a person you’ve committed, you will increase your chance of success by up to 95%.
I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight Solution #3:
“I just can’t seem to get any momentum going… I have ashamedly been jumping from plan to plan but can’t seem to sustain anything… Every time I find a new book I hope that this is going to be the one that finally helps me to lose weight…”
What helped me:
Whether it’s knitting or weight loss, if you start a new pattern or method each day you’ll never get results.
You have to stick to something for it to work.
This kind of behavior often stems from panic.
Like earlier this week I had 4 things I was desperate to get done for work. And instead of methodically doing each job I jumped from one to the next and found myself going in all different directions (it’s been a tough week, hasn’t it?) …But not really accomplishing anything.
It wasn’t until I picked one task, sat down with a cup of coffee (I LOVE coffee!) and worked on it for a few hours that I made progress.
So… focus on building one healthy habit at a time.
And when you get off track get up and try again.
Make Today Count
What’s one thing you can do TODAY that brings you closer to your goals?
-Eat a balanced breakfast full of whole foods?
-Ask a friend if you can touch base once a week to share your progress?
-Carrying on toward your goals after a “mistake” so you don’t turn something small (eating a cookie) into something big (eating all the cookies.)
STOP punishing yourself. When you’re kind to your body you’ll reach your happy weight naturally.
Build healthy eating and exercise habits. A healthy weight will follow.
You can get everything you need to know about these 3 life-changing steps here. I took about 3 years to write this book but you can read it in the same time it takes to watch a movie!
Pick a person to check in with. Choose a friend, sister, neighbor, parent or me… who you want to have a standing date to report on your progress. Building in accountability made all the difference for me. You can meet for a coffee each week, talk on the phone or get on a zoom call or Skype! I hope you’ll share what you’re going through with someone you trust. Not only does it increase your chance of success by a whopping 95% but… you’ll likely find that by opening up this person will share something with you too.
Walk away, walk away girl, if you know what’s good for you.
Walk away from dieting by building habits your body LOVES!
(The bit in the above video, that goes down at 0:55 seems unnecessary… perhaps he’s xitd abot Crismis.)
The orchids & books were all found over the last 3 years on dog walks. Please donate rather than send things to the landfill!
I got the little money chest that’s painted with a tree at a garage sale this past summer. The artist found the box in the garbage.
And special thanks to a reader named Kathy who sent me the beautiful lion mosaic she made.
Do you think: I’m afraid I’ll never lose weight?
Has this post helped you feel more optimistic? What’s your biggest take-away?
Thank you Tonina for emailing me. xoxxo Whatever anyone’s going through so many other people are too.
Sharing what I learned makes the 10 years I STRUGGLED worth it