Posts

Weight Loss - Think Yourself Thin, hypnosis, hypnotherapy, CBT books

10 Mental Strategies For Weight Loss – Think Yourself Thin

Weight Loss - Think Yourself Thin, hypnosis, hypnotherapy, CBT books

One of the most common issues I help clients with is weight loss. Generally, when someone comes to see me it’s after several attempts to lose weight. They’ve tried various diets, exercise regimes and weight loss plans but haven’t been able to keep up with them and the weight has crept back.

The reason for this is often a combination of unrealistic expectations, unsustainable weight loss plans, and entrenched self-defeating habits and behaviours that make losing weight and keeping it off even harder.

In modern day society, people like to feel instantly gratified and tend to lose interest if losing weight takes too long. But most people lose weight slowly and keeping to a diet plan is a difficult and a lengthy process. Normally it is advisable to lose 1-2 pounds of weight per week and if we lose weight fast we lose lean tissue and water but not fat.

Keeping to a weight loss plan over time is hard. This is why it is really important to address what’s going on in your head, as much as what’s happening to the rest of your body. If you can change those self-defeating habits, how you view food and install some positive behaviours that will help you stick to your plan; you’ll have much better chance of losing the weight for good.

Weight Loss Strategies: Install Positive Habits And Behaviours

So here are 10 mental strategies for weight loss so you can achieve your weight loss goals and think yourself thin.

  1. Imagine yourself thin. Visualise yourself being thin 3 – 6 months in the future and how great you look wearing the clothes you want to wear. Find photos of you when you were your thinner self and this help motivate to achieve your ideal goal weight. Make a list of the different ways you can incorporate this into your life. Think or imagine you are eating less and not indulging in unhealthy foods.
  2. Break your old habits and see a positive image of yourself. Choose activities like a new yoga or Zumba class that will distract you and give you a new focus and a new you.
  3. Have realistic expectations. When setting your weight loss goals make sure they’re realistic and achievable. Losing a lot of weight quickly is not healthy and is often incompatible with daily life. If your exercise and diet plan does not fit in with your lifestyle, you’re more likely to fail. Of course, any weight loss plan involves making adjustments and compromises to your unhealthy lifestyle, but a balance needs to be achieved to ensure you can stick to it.
  4. Set small goals that are (SMART) specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. Make a list of these smart and small goals that would improve your health and lifestyle and change your attitude to weight loss completely. Eating healthier meals with fruits and vegetables, getting 30 minutes of exercise per day, drinking less alcohol, eating healthy snacks, eating a salad instead of potato chips will help you to succeed in your goals.
  5. Accept support from your family and friends. Enlist friends and family to support your weight loss plan and help make you accountable. Even better lose weight with a friend so you can both motivate and support each other. Alternatively get an app that will send motivational messages and keep you on track when you have cravings. If you do have a day where you have indulged in a naughty treat then don’t beat yourself up but think of it as an off day and start again. Make this your one splurge of the week.
  6. Setting your action plan in motion. Create a programme for your exercise regime and a weekly healthy meal plan and you will see results. Make this a priority so can start building healthy behaviours from the offset so these become second nature.
  7. Give yourself a reward. A massage, a day at the spa, movie with a dear friend, this will help you feel good and grow your confidence. Reward yourself for accomplishing your goals you will feel good about your weight and celebrate your healthier self.
  8. Get rid of old habits of eating junk food if you want to succeed in losing weight. Identify the times when you are most likely to eat unhealthy foods such as cakes, biscuits and crisps. Swap them for healthy alternatives like a glass of water, fruit or nuts. Clear out the unhealthy snacks and replace them with better choices so you have less temptation to reach for the things that will cause you to put on weight.
  9. Keep a record of meals and snacks. Make a note of when and what you eat so that you can see how well you’re doing and also spot any triggers that cause you to eat unhealthily. For example, you may notice that if you haven’t eaten a proper meal at lunchtime you end up snacking on unhealthy food later in the day. With this information, you can plan your meals better, and avoid those unhealthy habits. By keeping a record you will also stay accountable so you less likely to go off track.
  10. Visualise you have a magic pause button inside you that stops you from reaching for the junk foods. If you feel like indulging in naughty foods ‘Pause and Think’ for at least 5-10 minutes before you make that decision to eat the chocolate bar. By not immediately giving in to your cravings you will realise that you do have the willpower to take control of your diet and weight.

For more support with losing weight download my eBook 10 Simple Steps To Weight Loss Success.

Learning To Keep The Weight Off, weight loss goals

Learning To Keep The Weight Off And Change The Way You Think About Food

Learning To Keep The Weight Off, weight loss goalsHave you had trouble with losing weight? Learning to keep the weight off is difficult, isn’t it? Does it sometimes feel like your weight fluctuates more than the stock market? Do you feel you could write a ‘diet’ book all by yourself but for some reason, even though you ‘know’ what to do, you just don’t do it?

The effects of ‘diet quick fixes’ are not long lasting as many of us have tried dieting to lose weight and failed. Sometimes we see short-term successes, but let’s face it, more often than not the diet fails, lowering our self-esteem and making us feel like failures.

Whether you have a few pounds or a few stones to lose or just want to cut out junk food, you need to make long-term changes and stick to them. When it comes to losing weight, the good news is this needn’t be difficult!

Keep The Weight Off By Changing Habits

Beating yourself up about being lazy and calling yourself harsh names is not motivating, and actually makes losing weight harder. Note-to-self: You are none of these things, you are worth it, and you are beautiful!

So why isn’t your diet working? Changing your diet is necessary but sometimes it’s not enough on its own. The basic formula of ‘eat better + exercise more = weight loss’ is correct, but the problem is the psychological aspect of changing unhelpful patterns that we may have got stuck in.

Tips for keeping the weight off:

  • Start with a healthy eating plan: a protein-rich meal will keep you feeling fuller for longer and you will snack less between meals. This will help maintain your weight loss;
  • Make a weekly meal plan and shop accordingly. Even if you go out or have a change of routine such as holidays, keep to your plan and stick with it;
  • Eat a healthy breakfast. You can control your weight if you are eating regularly and don’t snack, so start the day as you mean to go on;
  • Exercise and stay active. Build your exercise slowly by doing a gentle jog or more vigorous walk, and then increase the amount and intensity gradually. Build your activity slowly and keep at it;
  • Get your friends and family to support you so that you stay on your plan to eat healthily and keep you activity plan;
  • Try different things so if you get bored you don’t slip back in the old unhealthy eating pattern. Buy a new cookbook or do a cooking course with your diet in mind and try a new exercise class that is fun and motivating;
  • Set some SMART (simple, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely) goals and motivate yourself to not give up.

Why Does Hypnotherapy And CBT For Weight Loss Work So Well?

Hypnotherapy with CBT (cognitive behaviour therapy) can expose hidden reasons that you have not previously been able to lose weight. This process allows a person to break through the barrier that makes it difficult for her/him to achieve their weight loss goals. During the session, you will go into a state of deep relaxation and you are able to link what you think and feel with your actions, to put things into perspective. When the mind and body are in the relaxed state, you are given suggestions that will help you with your weight problems and change your way of thinking about food. After a series of sessions, you can be successful in achieving your weight loss objectives and regain your self-confidence again.

Ever heard your mind thinking and saying, “I just can’t stop eating. The more I try the harder it is?”  This is because the ‘unconscious’ is still making you think about food, making the battle of Mind vs. Food – Food: 1, Mind: 0.

Also, if you have the wrong diet your body may lack the right nutrients and so be driving you to eat more food in an urgent attempt to meet its nutritional needs. When you have a healthy natural diet, there is much less need for willpower because your body stops craving sugary foods.

In combination with eating healthier, the therapy works with the unconscious mind, changing your inner feelings and thoughts towards food. By resolving conflict, the ‘unconscious’ becomes aligned with the conscious, to bring about change on all levels.

You will come to learn how powerful your thoughts are and then harness that power to focus on what you want. Your unconscious mind will direct you to the healthier outcomes you desire and will change your behaviours to reach your goal, making permanent weight loss a reality!

Hypnotherapy and CBT help by:

  • Removing your desire to eat sugary foods or overeat.
  • Forming a positive self-image, using visualisation techniques.
  • Producing a more robust feeling of determination and strength.
  • Providing you with the motivation to exercise and lead a healthier lifestyle.
  • Improving your confidence, self-esteem and positive thinking.
  • Giving you tools and techniques to cope with the stress.
  • Resolving any past events which may be connected to weight gain

Hypnotherapy together with CBT is a safe and effective method of embedding the habits that will allow you to lose weight. Through this process, you will feel in control of yourself, your weight and your life.  Why wait any longer for the weight to drop off and live the fulfilled life you wish for?

For a chat about how you can learn to keep the weight off, contact me on 07967 151790 for a free consultation.

Weigh Loss Men vs. Women

Losing weight: Men vs. Women (The Difference Hormones Make)

Weigh Loss Men vs. WomenThe differences between male and female bodies are obvious in one glance. Along with having different body shapes, there are other differences that impact on weight loss, such as men generally enjoying high-protein foods such as meat, while women love to eat carbohydrates. These important differences are often ignored in information about healthy eating and weight loss, but there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution for men and women, both sexes need a weight loss plan designed just for them.

Generally, when people get into their thirties and then forties, they struggle to keep off the pounds – the middle-aged spread. Women especially have difficulty with weight loss, and this is because of the difference between how men and women store fat – and the hormones that influence this.

Women store their fat in their breasts, thighs and hips. The hormone oestrogen causing the storage of fat in a woman’s thighs and hips and there is an impact on a woman’s breasts due to both the hormones progesterone and oestrogen. Men tend to store fat around the middle of their bodies due to the hormone testosterone and have lean arms and legs. Women have a monthly cycle (menstrual cycle), which fluctuates their hormones and there is an impact on how they function during this phase: how they look, feel and this can cause them to overeat. This then determines their fat storage and whether their bodies lose weight or gain weight.

How Hormones Affect Weight Loss

Hormones – oestrogen and progesterone work in conjunction with each other and influences a woman’s ability to burn fat and the areas that this fat will be taken from. This fat storage is not an intake of calories but a hormonal balance issue.

There is a myth that a diet with low-calorie foods and exercise will cause a woman to lose weight but stress is an important factor too in weight loss. This is due to a high oestrogen level as it increases storage of fat in a woman around thighs and hips. Progesterone combined with oestrogen stops the storage of fat, but if you are in a high-stress situation there is less progesterone action.

Testosterone is an important hormone that helps men with the fat loss, muscle building, bone density and tone of their skin. When men are at their peak they tend to lose weight easily. Many men have to just cut back on what they eat and they tend to gradually drop their weight while women find this process harder. However as the testosterone levels in men decreases, weight loss gets harder and their bone density lowers, this can also impact on mood and may cause feelings of depression.

Weight Loss For Men And Women

Instead of prescribing a diet, exercise plan and weight loss tips for both men and women, we must take into account the unique action of hormones each sex. Here are my individual healthy eating tips for women and men:

Women, you should.

  • Try to eat healthier and smaller portions,
  • Exercise consistently and regularly; include weight training (3 – 5 times a week),
  • Sleep well, eat foods with a good source of protein,
  • Try and cut back on the coffee, carbonated drinks like coke, sprite,
  • Eat green vegetables, increase fibre foods,
  • Take supplements (Vitamin D, fish oil and calcium),
  • Lower intake of dairy and grain foods,
  • Drink plenty of water, green tea.

Men should…

  • An exercise regime designed to strengthen muscle mass and strength. They should do some weight training,
  • Eat plenty of protein rich foods and healthy foods,
  • Reduce their stress levels that increase a hormone cortisol (which is important for fight or flight response) in their system but lowers their testosterone level,
  • Sleep well every night 8 -10 hours,
  • Try to cut back on the alcohol consumption.

Psychological Impact On Weight Loss

Apart from the physiological differences, psychologically men and women are different too. Generally, men don’t see their obesity as a problem and refuse to view themselves as overweight even if they are. They are not dissatisfied by their bodies and weight like women are. They tend not to see their weight issues and assume if they really wanted to they could achieve their desired weight.

On the other hand, women turn to food for comfort and eat due to emotional reasons. They have cravings and their mood with stress triggers them to overeat. If a woman is happy about her shape and size/weight she will feel confident about herself and achieve her goals. A woman will plan a healthy eating programme, shop according to that and will be strict with her weight loss and exercise regularly.

One of the most common reasons that men and woman are different is a woman needs a lot of support from friends and family (social support) and psychological support. While men don’t seem to need the same kind of support, they have a simple plan and will stay on the weight loss programme longer than a woman.

If you are a woman of 40 years and want help with your goals to lose the weight you are struggling with Download my free: 10 Simple Steps To Weight Loss Success.

I also offer a free 30 min free consultation to identify the barriers you have to lose the weight you desire. Contact me on +44 (0)796 715 1790 or email [email protected]

Why Is Your Diet Isn’t Working, dieting tips

Why Your Diet Isn’t Working

Why Is Your Diet Isn’t Working, dieting tips

Most people who diet for long periods of time have different stories to tell about why their diet is not working. The general assumption is that they are unable to lose weight long-term because they did not have the willpower to keep dieting, or they were too weak or succumbed to some naughty foods.

The psychology of why some diets don’t work is that people did not know how to keep the weight off long-term. They cannot motivate themselves to keep going on the diet especially if there is a temptation from some foods that they are partial to. They don’t see their setbacks as temporary and they should keep going, not give up. They are unable to control the cravings, sometimes unhealthy emotions overwhelm them and they feel hopeless.

When you start on your new diet it’s really easy in the beginning, but after a period of time, you are unable to persevere.

What To Do If Your Diet Isn’t Working

You can successfully be in control of what you eat and your diet; you just need to know how to. For example, it’s like learning to swim, once you learn how to swim you never forget.

By learning to picture the effects of our behaviour in detail we are able to transform our motivation and change the way we feel and act. We see things clearly in a new light when we think of the consequences of our actions. You see what that behaviour does to you, the full implications of the negative belief.

Some people who diet have misinterpreted their negative thoughts and this prevents them from reaching their ideal weight.

The negative thoughts you self-sabotage your diet are as follows:

  • Justify why you are eating cakes and sweets,
  • Miscalculate the results of eating naughty food,
  • Cheating yourself by saying its ok if I eat this today, I can re-start my diet tomorrow,
  • Rules from your childhood: I cannot waste food because it would mean wasting money and I was taught not to waste food as a child,
  • Not wanting to say no to friends and family when offered a cake or chocolate,
  • Fear of being hungry so eating the chocolate bar or crisps.

Why did my diet not work?

  • You were starving yourself: due to the fact you are not eating enough, you are getting hungry in the middle of the day and then overeating later. Skipping meals means that your body loses its ability to feel full and you feel hungry and fail to burn the calories.
  • You exercise and reward yourself with food: you are possibly not exercising enough for example underestimation the amount of food you have eaten and overestimating your exercise to burn the burn of the calories.
  • You drink unhealthy drinks such as diet colas and no sugar drinks. These drinks can be deceptive and fake sweeteners can trick you into thinking that you are being consistent on you diet. But you might still crave a candy bar because fake drinks do not trigger a dopamine (feel good) release like sugar does.
  • You struggle with your weight due to your friends or family not exercising as well and you all fall in a pattern of eating unhealthy. So if you can make a deal with your friends or a family member to start a new weight loss program, which includes a healthy eating plan and an exercise plan, you will persevere.
  • You have not eaten fast foods or carbohydrates for a long while. This means that your body is lacking in nutrients like essential calcium and vitamin C and you will compensate by eating something that is not good for you and put on weight. Eating a variety of healthy foods, good carbohydrates in fruits and healthy fats is something you need to stick to long-term.

So how can you overcome these negative or self-sabotaging thoughts and behaviours? Owning up to them is a good step in the right direction. If you recognise any of the above behaviour be reassured that you’re not the only one who has these thoughts, many other people are in the same boat.

Here are a few things you can do to help yourself, and underneath where you can get further help and support so that your diet does work long-term:

  • Note down on a card your reasons for wanting to lose weight,
  • Plan in advance what you are going to eat and repeat your positive affirmations over and over again to be in control of your cravings,
  • If you crave foods that are not good for you, take your list out about your reasons for wanting to lose your excess weight, also distract yourself,
  • If you get hungry, eat a healthy snack and the feelings of hunger will go away,
  • Eat a healthy breakfast and lunch, eat a light dinner not too late in the evening,
  • Choose to exercise regularly and keep at it. Don’t give up,
  • If you do eat some naughty foods, don’t give up keep going on your healthy eating plan. Don’t just keep eating those naughty foods all day,
  • Eat slowly and mindfully, chew carefully and enjoy every bite you eat.

Hypnotherapy can help weight loss with Cognitive Behaviour therapy. It can help you to learn how to change your unhelpful and inaccurate thoughts about why your diet is not working and feel good emotionally. By identifying sabotaging behaviour with your cravings for naughty foods and respond effectively, you will reach your weight loss goals.

  • It helps face your weight loss challenges with self-confidence and you will be able to know what to do when you struggle with your diet,
  • Prepares your mind and body for any sabotaging thoughts, and helps you to become strong,

Find out more about hypnotherapy for weight loss here.