Adapted from Caroline Rushforth:
I was a hefty 235 pounds at the age of 14, which wasn’t the best start in life. I could never understand why I was so big. I believed that I was completely trapped in my own body, after experiencing one failed attempt after another at weight loss. I starved myself, yo-yo dieted, and tried all the fad eating plans, well into adulthood, but I could never lose those extra pounds. But eventually I discovered that it wasn’t about just losing a few kilos.
In my early twenties, I began to learn about Neuro-linguistic programming (NLP), which focuses on the link between our language and our thoughts and behaviors. I eventually qualified as an NLP Coach, and had the opportunity to work on myself. I realized the main culprit in my battle with weight had always been my thinking and my habits.
I needed to work on my self esteem, self acceptance, and happiness in my own skin. I thought losing weight would give me those qualities, but in reality, I had to develop them before I could lose the weight.
From my ongoing research and practical NLP techniques, I have learned much about the unconscious mind and the importance of re-framing negative self talk. We all have patterns running inside our subconscious mind, which start at a very early age. We're heavily influenced by our friends and family, as well as our environment. If you were repeatedly given chocolate as a child to make you stop crying, chances are you have a deep rooted anchor to chocolate and associate it with making you feel better when you feel upset in your adult life.
Generally the habits we form at an early age are beneficial to us because they protect us and make us unique, but some can be detrimental to our well-being and cause us to self sabotage (i.e emotional eating).
While the process of understanding how you sabotage yourself can take years to unravel, there are shortcuts you can take along the way which will help you to re-program your thinking. Affirmations are a great way to send positive messages to your unconscious mind so that you start to think and behave in a nicer way towards yourself. (Remember my point about finding the qualities first before the weight loss takes place?)
Going from negative self talk to self love doesn’t happen overnight. However, I can assure you that if you practice these affirmations over time, you'll start to notice your thinking changes. And that's the first step.
- I believe in my ability to truly love myself for who I am.
- I accept my body shape and acknowledge the beauty it holds.
- I am the creator of my future and driver of my mind.
- I let go of unhelpful patterns of behaviour around food.
- I allow myself to make choices and decisions for my higher good.
- I bring the qualities of fulfillment, happiness and contentment into my life as I am now.
- I let go of any guilt I hold around food choices.
- I accept my body for the shape I have been blessed with.
- I let go of relationships that are no longer for my higher good.
- I believe in myself and acknowledge my greatness.
- I allow myself to feel good being me.
- I accept myself for who I am.
- I bring the qualities of love into my heart.
- I have hope and certainty about the future.
- I am grateful for the body I own and all it does for me.
You're welcome to use these or write your own. Give it a few weeks! After practicing them several times day, I guarantee you'll start to feel more wholesome and in control, seeing your body as your friend, rather than your enemy.
***BUT PLEASE remember and consider our previous blog regarding staying off the scale. A number does NOT define you!***