One of the things that we explore in my groups and indeed in one-one therapy is whether we actually want to lose weight. I know. You’re probably thinking, of course I want to lose weight! Why else would I be here? The truth is, we say we want to lose weight – and in fact many of us feel deep frustration about not being able to control our eating behaviours, or even more frustration at doing everything ‘right’ but still seeing no result – but very often the reason we cant lose weight is because on a subconscious level we are holding onto the weight because it GIVES US SOMETHING.
What would our weight be giving us, besides low self esteem, a lack of confidence and shame?
I’d like to tell you a story. I worked with a client a year or so ago, we’ll call her Becky. Becky came to see me because she wanted to lose weight. She had put on 20 kgs gradually over the past 5 years and in that time, she had not been in a relationship. Becky had always dreamed of having a family. She was now 36 and single and was telling herself that once she lost weight, she would be able to get into a relationship and start a family. Yet for some reason, she just couldn’t seem to shift the weight and move forward with her dream.
When we explored more deeply we found that Becky had a number of limiting beliefs, but two of the ones that were most important in this story were ‘I am only loveable if I am slim’ and also ‘I am not worthy of unconditional love’. This last limiting belief was the most damaging to her dream of love and a family. Becky felt that she couldn’t date until she lost weight. However, if she didn’t believe she was worthy of unconditional love, then why would she want to lose the weight anyway? Her weight was being held there by a subconscious mind that wanted to make these beliefs right (it is important to note here that the subconscious mind will do anything in its power to make itself right, as this ensures it feels safe). So on a conscious level she was ready for a family, for unconditional love – but on a subconscious level she didn’t want this because she didn’t believe she was worthy of it. And her weight was the way of making these limiting beliefs true for her subconscious mind.
So how do we shift weight that doesn’t want to be shifted?
There are two ways to help shift limiting beliefs that are holding us back.
1. Help the unconscious mind to let go of the belief altogether. We do this through a combination of learning techniques and Hypnotherapy (where we access the subconscious and offer it a different perspective).
2. Create the end result first. The fastest way to help the subconscious shift a belief is through what we call ‘exposure therapy’. Expose the subconscious mind to the very thing it is afraid of enough times, and it will start to un-believe the limiting belief it created in the first place. For example if you are afraid of dating for fear of rejection, start dating and putting yourself out there anyway and see what happens. Remind yourself that if someone rejects you for your size, you don’t want to be with someone that superficial anyway. It’s all about feeling the fear and doing it anyway.
Every unwanted symptom (weight included) and behaviour (eating included) is a message from the body
When we can unravel what is holding YOU back from getting what you want, thats when the real change happens. Becky and I worked together for 6 months. By the end of our time together her weight was slowly starting to drop and she had started dating. She hadn’t found true love yet, but in her words ‘For the first time in my adult life I am starting to feel comfortable in my own skin and my weight does not define me’. This is what makes this work in the world so incredibly worthwhile. if you’re prepared to dig a little deeper, you’ll find the hidden treasure that can be truly life-changing.
If you’d like to explore a little more deeply your own relationship with food & weight, then I am offering 10 free 30 minute Food-Body Breakthrough Sessions throughout January on a first come first served basis. Please email [email protected] with the subject line a Free Food-Body Breakthrough Session
Here’s to a transformational 2018!
With love, Louise