For years I stopped weighing myself. Not a home and not in the doctor’s office. I flatly refused.
Secretly, I imagined I had gained around 10-12 pounds. While that may not seem like a lot to you, to me it was a source of nagging mental static.
“That’s not too bad,” I tried to reason. Yes, I was only up a size or two. And, when I looked in the mirror, I could still see my shape.
But I started hating looking in the mirror. Well aware of my apple shape expanding, I was always looking for “slimming” tops to wear over my black pants or leggings.
Photographs, although I tried to avoid them or strategically positioned myself behind others, revealed the bitter truth.
I used to joke that I had the reverse affliction of people who thought they were never thin enough. I always thought I was thinner than I actually was.
And then my brain got something I equate to a mild electric shock when I say my body reflected back at me.
Now photos, mirrors, plate glass windows all conspired to tell me what I could no longer deny, I was overweight.
Scale anxiety kept me in the dark.
I knew my brain would freak out at the sight of the number, whatever it was. It had a long history of freaking out when the number was higher than I wanted/hoped.
Why would I ever intentionally step on the scale only to make myself miserable?
My inner critic had plenty to say about what my weight meant about me.
In the past, critical thoughts about my weight and size would gnaw at my brain throughout the day.
A lingering sense of despair would disturb my equilibrium and I’d feel off kilter.
So for the sake of my mental health, scale avoidance was my number one go-to strategy. And it worked.
I know this all may sound over-dramatic. We’re not talking about a hundred pounds.
But, the truth is that at any weight when it is at odds with what you want, your brain creates disturbing noise.
I hadn’t weighed myself since 2011, when I was only trying to lose a stubborn 2-3 pounds above my Weight Watchers maintenance weight right before my wedding.
In 2018, I hit the brakes.
After the shock of seeing myself in a Mother’s Day family photo, I finally decided to lose weight once and for all.
A switch flipped and I was ready to do whatever it took.
I had no idea what lay in store or what my weight journey would end up teaching me.
Negative thinking is the most misunderstood component undermining weight loss efforts.
As an accomplished cook, licensed personal chef and owner of the Healthy Kitchen Coach cooking business, I knew a lot about food, recipes, nutrients and food preparation.
What I hadn’t yet grasped was the degree to which my thoughts, beliefs and judgements about food and eating were sabotaging my own weight loss efforts.
After seeing that Mother’s Day photo, I could feel my brain finally crying out for help.
Since I had already discovered thought work, I decided the best next step was to hire a life and weight loss coach to solve the conundrum of weight loss once and for all.
How I overcame my scale avoidant ways.
I almost backed out of coaching because I dreaded facing the scale.
Who would have ever thought that a successful, accomplished, intelligent woman like myself could feel threatened by a bathroom scale?
Of course my rational mind tried to reason with me. But without much success.
My inner critic had a field day threatening to launch a huge anxiety attack. I hemmed and hawed, all the while knowing I would have to establish my starting weight at some point.
I tried bargaining with my coach. She helped me get over myself.
Here’s what she advised that helped me step onto the scale without scale anxiety hobbling me.
- Imagine that you are research scientist collecting raw data.
- When you stand in front of the scale, picture yourself donning a white lab coat.
- Imagine picking up your clipboard and taking your pen in hand.
- Next, see the scientist watching the subject (you) standing on the scale.
- As the scientist, record only the last 2 digits of the number the scale registers.
- Remember that you are standing on a small, inanimate square made of metal, plastic and glass. It is not a fortune teller, a character analyst or an arbiter of your worth.
- Allow the anxiety to stand next to you. Welcome this normal human emotion to accompany you on this data gathering project.
I could feel this approach ratcheting down my anxiety.
I took a deep breath.
“Alrighty then. Here we go,” I whispered to myself.
And then I did it! I stood naked on the scale for the first time in many years.
I didn’t feel great about the number, but I didn’t feel panicky either.
And, as I had already planned, I comforted myself with a compassionate inner voice.
I thought, “It’s okay. It’s just data. A journey of 1,000 miles begins with a single step.”
The thought “It’s just data.” could work for you too.
Dispassionately recording the last two digits made it easier to weigh daily.
To be completely honest, now, even several years later, I still may take a breath before stepping on the scale. Especially if I have eaten a planned exception that, from experience, I know will cause the number to rise.
Sometimes I still need to imagine myself standing there in my white lab coat, clipboard in hand.
But ever since that first weigh-in, I weigh myself every morning, like clockwork. It’s been almost 2 1/2 years now.
I blew past my original goal of 10-12 pounds and lost 25.
I’ve maintained that weight loss within a planned 3 pound range with ease.
I’m here to help you lose all the weight you want.
I want to teach you everything I learned about how to manage my mind around weight loss.
I want to dispel common weight loss myths that could be sabotaging your efforts.
Learning the skills, tools and tips that made it possible for me, a post-menopausal Baby Boomer, to lose weight and keep it off will give you peace of mind and freedom which today may seem unimaginable.
I’d love to help you.
Let me know you’d like to hop on a FREE Strategy Call with me to discuss your goals and what’s possible to achieve working with me as your weight loss coach.
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