Change your thinking and change your life. Your life is a result of your daily decisions. Perceptions can be changed with a single thought. You must believe that cognitive behavior weight loss is indeed possible. What does that mean? Keep reading…
What is your motivation?
What is your motivation to change your life? When you reach the point where your weight is unacceptable, you will make changes in your lifestyle.
To make sustainable lifestyle changes you must:
- Change your thinking
- Manage your environment
- Take a long-range view
As a diabetes care and support manager, I am trained in how to maintain sustainable changes in your life. What does sustainable mean? It means that you can continue it on an ongoing basis. Diabetes is directly related to excess weight. It is a chronic disease, so it is important to manage your weight gain over a lifetime, therefore, by sustainable means.
We have all tried to lose weight on diets. We can deny ourselves for a while, but we give up and go back to our old eating habits. Then we feel like failures.
We need to change our thinking by identifying your why and focusing on it every day. Have you taken the time to evaluate what motivates you? That is the first step.
Be realistic! When you go on a low carb diet, you are going to crave carbohydrates. Your body’s main fuel supply is carbohydrates. So when you reduce your carbs, you feel tired. But carbohydrates are not your enemy.
There are limits to our energy to deny what we crave. Don’t try to change all your bad eating habits at the same time. Make a list of your cravings and prioritize them.
Pick one to focus on. For example, potato chips. Look at the serving size and measure out one serving. Put the chip bag away. Enjoy your one serving of chips once a day. Celebrate your ability to control your cravings. When this is an automatic behavior, pick another one or two on your list. Don’t try to deny all your poor eating habits at the same time.
Manage your environment – Plan ahead.
Out of sight = Out of mind
Make it harder to do what is bad. You are going to get hungry. Set a bowl of fruit or nuts where you can see them and put away the bag of chips. When you are hungry, eat the fruit.
Another way is to not purchase the bag of chips, thereby controlling your environment.
In-sight = in mind
Plan for healthy snacks like yogurt or cheese sticks. Keep in mind sweet snacks are digested quickly leaving you hungry again. Snacks with high fiber like nuts and seeds or protein snacks protect against hunger longer. Plan ahead for your snacks and stick to it.
Plan ahead for non-food rewards
I encourage everyone to journal daily. Record your successes and reward yourself with non-food items. Consider a massage, a date night, maybe even a trip. There are a wide variety of ways to reward yourself with non-food items. Celebrate your victories!
Write about your failures. You will have failures. It is important to take time to evaluate what went wrong. Learn from your failures.
Take a long-range view – expect setbacks
Record in your journal your feelings. Many people do not have good coping skills. If you have a bad day, know that tomorrow is a new opportunity. Forgive yourself and learn from your setbacks. Research healthy ways to cope with stress. Practice what works best for you. Promise yourself to try harder tomorrow.
Focus on the times when things went right. Celebrate your victories. Each evening (maybe when you are watching television) review your day and journal your successes. Feel good about your progress. Having a written record is important to remember your growth. Your journal will help you realize how much you have grown.
Cognitive behavior weight loss
My ebook, Parent’s Guide to Healthy Kids, emphasizes cognitive-behavioral dieting. There are many tricks to making sustainable changes. Previously I suggested journaling while watching television. This is called stacking habits.
Stacking habits is setting up cues for remembering healthy habits. My ebook goes into more details and more suggestions! I hope you’ll check it out!
If you know of anyone who could benefit from cognitive behavioral dieting, be a good friend and share this blog post with them! If you have questions that aren’t answered here, you can email me at Julie@kidsatriskfordiabetes.com.