I would like for you to join me in creating a mindset shift around what the process of weight loss truly is. Weight loss for most people is an addiction recovery process. A process that isn’t going to be perfect and one that is going to be met with a lifetime awareness of how your unique emotions, behaviors, habits and genetic wiring impact how you eat, why you eat, and how your body responds to that.
When we create this shift of thinking around dropping excess weight and maintaining it, you can now better understand why relapses (weight regain) might happen. There are many metabolic situations that aid in a relapse (I’ll save this for a future column) but from an addiction recovery standpoint, simply stated, relapses happen. The most important thing to recognize is that if you have regained weight from a previous weight loss experience, it is nothing to be ashamed of and is simply part of the learning and adjustment process. A relapse is not the end of the world and only needs to be a brief setback. It doesn’t mean that you have failed and it doesn’t mean that you will never succeed in the future. It does mean that you have fallen back into old habits and behaviors that don’t serve you. If you have regained weight, you need support and accountability to learn from it and to help you move forward in the direction you know you want to go. You must also take serious measures to correct, but with this action and mindset in place, weight gain relapses will diminish in frequency and duration over a period of time.
According to Dr. Brooke Feinerman, PhD in psychology and a part of the PHD Weight Loss advisory board, the most important thing to remember is that change does not happen by simply not eating specific foods; long-term change happens by committing to creating a new life that reflects your values and goals of living healthy in a peak state. If you do not make changes to overall lifestyle and practice them daily with fortitude, then the things that originally contributed to unhealthy habits and that addiction, will eventually catch back up with you.
Remember, you can make change and maintain it if you want to, for the rest of your life, simply because you made the decision to.
Failure lies not in falling down. Failure lies in not getting up.
– Chinese proverb