3 Ways Serial Dieting Devastates Self-Esteem
You hate your body. You hate that you are fat.
You look in the mirror and wish that you looked like the women in the magazines.
You wish you looked like Jo at work.
You wonder what people must think of you?
You decide (yet again) that you are going to lose weight.
You buy in lots of fruit and vegetables and crispbreads…..oh and a cauliflower to make some rice (??!!?)
You have a light breakfast, and a light lunch.
You still feel slightly hungry.
You feel virtuous.
You’ve been so ‘good’!
At 4 o’clock you are even hungrier and eat an apple……and a couple of cookies.
Now you feel awful.
Why did you eat the cookies?
You wish you had more willpower.
You hate that you just can’t seem to do this weight loss thing anymore.
You wonder what’s the matter with you?
How come she gets to eat cookies and still be slim?
How comes it’s you that’s lumbered with the fat body?
You hate your stupid body. You hate yourself.
You’ve ruined it all again.
You wonder why this happens every time.
What’s the point in even trying?
You’re such a failure.
You can’t get anything right.
You’re fat and ugly and a waste of space!
(Or words to that effect)
Maybe you don’t need to imagine?
Maybe you’ve lived this many times yourself?
And maybe as a result of being a serial dieter, you have even lower self-esteem than you might otherwise have had?
Here are 3 reasons why this is the case for the majority:
1. As a serial dieter you have chosen to buy into the idea that your body is not good enough as it is. This makes you feel bad. It make you feel like there is something wrong with you.
It’s hardly surprising that so many of us feel this way given the disproportionate amount of visual images and messages out there, promoting the super slim ideal. We have been conditioned to believe that super slim is the normal way for a body to be.
But is it?
In the UK, more than 50% of women are a size 16 plus. So in reality, if you are a size 16 or above, you are in the majority. Surely that means you are the norm?
(Please note: there is an alternative way to think about your body. You could choose to think that your body is a good body and that it does it’s best for you. You could decide to accept it as it is and treat it well in lots of ways. Just saying…..)
2.Being a serial dieter means that you are spending a lot of time thinking about your body (and your whole self) in a negative way.
Obviously not conducive to high self-esteem.
This can also lead to social anxiety; worrying about whether you’ll be the fattest person in the room. Worrying about what people will think.
Will they think you are greedy or lazy or stupid? And maybe the bigger problem is that your own internal voice is telling you similar.
We have to remember that the stuff we are telling ourselves, is simply not true.
We are definitely NOT stupid (My proof? 4 out of 5 of the Chasers in the UK general knowledge quiz show are in larger bodies. And they are super brainy!).
Most fat people I know are no ‘greedier’ than slim people- in fact if anything they have spent more of their lives restricting the amount of food they eat. This implies ‘not greedy’ in my book.
Studies show a link between dieting and binge eating disorder; it seems that it’s the act of dieting itself, which warps our relationship with food.
Anyway, I hope I’m beginning to convince you to be less negative about yourself? It’s not your fault.
3.There is no surer way to feel a failure than to repeatedly try to lose weight and repeatedly fail! And there’s no surer way of lowering self-esteem, than feeling a failure!
And here’s the thing: the HUGE majority of people who do try to lose weight……fail!
Not because they are failures, but because the concept of dieting fails them.
Now I could go on to quote the statistics (95% of those who lose weight put it back on again within 5 years if not sooner), but do I really need to?
Look around you…..how many people do you know that have lost weight in the past, only to regain what they have lost? It’s not that they haven’t tried, is it? So listen folks- it’s NORMAL to regain the weight. You are in the majority. You are NOT a failure. Full stop. Period.
In conclusion – as far as self-esteem goes, being a serial dieter gives you yet another stick with which to beat yourself.
Maybe now would be a good time to put the stick down?
Boost your self esteem and change your life for the better
I am running a 3 week online programme called Self-Esteem for Serial Dieters
It starts on June 24th 2018 and will be jam packed with ideas, techniques and support.
If you are ready to believe that you are more than good enough just as you are, then this programme is a no-brainer.
Click >>HERE<< for more info or to sign up.
(Offer-only £47 for the first 12 to sign up)