Body Weight is a very Complex issue that goes further from counting calories, exercising and positive statements.
My personal journey since my teenager years to my late thirties was a struggle with body Weight and Body Confidence. I never felt happy with my body, in my body. Even though I was very sporty and there were times where my fitness and body shape was excellent, sadly I did not think so, I did not feel so. I tried a lot of diets, protocols, trainings and weird things to lose weight and I did, but the secret for body confidence is not in body weight, shape and level of fitness.
I decided to embark in a different journey of inner transformation that started with the yoga practice, this practice took me to mindset transformation and it was followed by studies in nutrition and healthy eating. I also have used and have as part of my life different detoxification protocols as support for body health and to keep a healthy body weight.
Here you will find a summary of three main aspects that I consider play important role in keeping a healthy Weight. This approach allows us to see the body weight in a wide spectrum far beyond counting calories, following standard diets, NLP and other strategies that can work for a while but in general do not serve in the long term. From my personal experience and working with clients I have come to the conclusion that Body Weight Loss can become a life transformative process if we combine tackle overweight in a holistic way and acknowledgement the connections between body and mind and acquiring the needed information to nurture and detox our bodies.
I summarize these aspects in this way:
1. Mind Your Mindset:
The way how we see our body, what we think and feel about it are all messages that the body receives and gives feed back to. These messages are constructions that usually do not belong to us (they are not conscious), they have been given by our parents, society, school, social media and so on. We build body self-image in our first 7 years of our life. Although we keep adding and changing aspects, the core of our self-image is built when we are very young.
We become used to think, refer and see our bodies in certain ways. These create patterns and behaviors towards our body. Another part of the story is that these patterns are not always positive, often they are very negative and undermining of our body’s unique beauty and potential to change.
When this happens, we behave -unconsciously- in a way that is detrimental; we overeat, under eat, we put the body through stress and or overwork, we neglect our needs of rest, sleep and nurture. The subconscious mind overpowers our will power, good intentions and deep desires. It happens a lot to people who keep dieting and over exercising, but at some time, their subconscious beliefs through the inner saboteur, expresses itself in breaking of diets and exercising routines. This is a common hamster wheel that makes the person comes back to where he/she was and very often in a more challenging place. This is the pattern of yo-yo dieters.
Having in consideration our body Paradigms is fundamental when we commit to any program to lose weight. When there is a positive perception and feelings around the body, a healthy body self-image, the body physiology follows making the losing weight process a natural path, the hormones accommodate to the new belief system and finally the body finds a balanced and lasting weight.
How can you release or change limiting beliefs and improve your body self image?
-Start noticing your thoughts and feelings around your body. Are they negative? Which kind of messages are you delivering? In which ways do you criticise, judge, avoid, reject, fear your body?
-Which connections between these current beliefs and your childhood can you find? What associations are there between your body talk with your upbringing, school events, family statements, emotional shocks or traumas? Bringing these subconscious situations into the conscious mind, can be very useful to connect to primary emotions and access the releasing of them, transforming limiting beliefs, towards more allowing ones.
- Become aware when you compare your body with other bodies. Not two bodies are the same, Any time you become aware that you are comparing your body with other’s, make it an opportunity to shifting the attention towards self- acknowledgment and appreciation of what your body does for you. Give yourself permission to feel good now through acknowledging your uniqueness.
- Look at your body on the mirror - as an observer- without judgement. Watch the first thoughts that come into your mind. If you can, look at areas of your body that you avoid, neglect or dislike. Start with accepting what ever you see and also whatever you feel about what you see.
-Practice gratitude towards your Body. When we exercise gratitude, we acknowledge body’s power and wisdom; we detach of judgement and negativity and engage with more positive emotions towards the body and life in general.
- Practice Forgiveness towards yourself and others for the way you and others have treated, abused, neglected your body. Forgiveness is a powerful tool to heal and release negative beliefs that block a healthy relationship with the body. When there is unforgivingness there is room for shame, disappointment, embarrassment and guilt. Negative emotions trigger stress hormones which at the same time can trigger cravings and set the ground to hormones unbalances which make the fat storage very efficient.
Apart from these tips for you to work on your mind set shifting, there are some systems and protocols that can support you to achieve a healthy relation ship with your body towards an ideal body weigh.
Some of these systems can help you to establish a healthy relationship with your body.:
-PSYCH-K Facilitation Coaching: A system combining Neuroscience and Spirituality. It is a quick and very effective way to shift limiting beliefs.
-Emotional Freedom Technique: Tapping acupressure meridians to release blockages
-Shadow Work and Inner Child Work Implies diving into our subconscious material that shapes our beliefs, emotions and behaviors, which can come from emotional experiences and traumas.
2. Move your Moving Body.
Movement is necessary if you want to lose weight. The reason is simple: When you move, your metabolism is activated, your body is encouraged to burn calories more efficiently and towards hormonal balance. When the metabolism is activated, detoxing and de-inflammation happens faster as well. Inflammation and fat storage are mechanisms the body has to store toxins in the body, therefore the more toxins the body is in need to build up more body fat.
Human Body has been designed for movement, but with the comforts of this civilization, we forget it. When we reconnect with any kind of movement, the body taps into its ancestral condition and design, therefore the body starts looking for a balanced body weight.. The more often you move, the easier and more natural is the process of going to the natural body weight.
How Can we Access an adequate Body Practice?
- Move your body simply: Which kind of movement does your Body like to do? Walking, dancing, swimming in the sea?, stretching, Yoga?. It is paramount that when we exercise, we enjoy it. Give yourself the chance to try different exercising options. Do not limit yourself to the most common or the ones you know/have practiced. Exercising is a very effective way to improve the code of communication with your body. The way how you feel while exercising and afterwards is your body feeding back to you, informing more effective and pleasant ways to achieve your weight goals.
-.Challenge your Body with love and Compassion: The Body loves to make physical effort because it is a way to become stronger, healthier and more resilient. It is important when you choose your exercise, not making it too easy that you get bored, or too difficult that you don’t want to do it again. Look for the right balance, the middle path.
-. Make it Consistent: When we exercise doing a little every day or every other day is much better than having just one long weekly session. Our ancestors used to exercise every day, this is the place we want to get to, a place when moving become natural and part of the routine, like brushing your teeth, Some thing you can not live without.
-. Do not compare your fitness level with anyone or with you in the past. Remember You are unique and fitness is something that your body builds up through intention and action taking. Also acknowledge that your body is different every day and depending on circumstances. If you respect and honor your body’s unique/present needs and level of strength your body will pay you back with strength and resilience.
3. Inform your self around Food/ Nutrition/Detoxing
When we have Weight Problems we tend to go for standard diets and or diets that work for other people. Researches show that people who go on diets usually are overweight and keep repeating the yo-yo pattern well known in the dieting industry. People who go on diets are more prompt to have ongoing metabolic problems such as diabetes and hypoglycemia that make body weight a live long problem.
When we trying to lose weight, the counting of calories is only a very small percentage of success. Losing weigh is a complex issue and food itself is much more complex than calories in calories out. Food is basically information for the body in form of micro, macronutrients and water.
Food and nutrition is of course a very important part of any program aiming at weight lost, however as our body is unique, accessing information about our nutritional needs is crucial, since with better information we can improve our eating habits, therefore it increases the like hood of success in body weigh loss programs.
The food offer that we have at the moment is immense and the information that we have about nutrition is limited. Very often the way how many food products are marketed distort the information of their qualities and ingredients; hiding data about the negative effects or the way how they are prepared. It makes us going for certain foods that affect our hormones and increase our cravings. The body gets used to certain food out of habit/emotional estate. It has been actually well proved that we become addicts to certain food and this is well known and managed by the food industry which manipulates our psychology through their adverts.
Another important aspect to consider around nutrition is our fluid intake. Most people do not drink enough fluid. The food that we have access at the moment is much dried that it used to be, it means that we are not getting enough fluid from our food intake: we used to eat more fruit and vegetables. Very often when we feel hungry, what we are is in fact is thirsty. Increasing water intake is fundamental when we are trying to lose some weight.
How to be more aware of your body nutritional needs?
-Drink plenty of plain water.
-Observe your eating habits: What/ how much do you eat, when do you eat, is there special food that you crave? When do you crave them? Are you addicted to a specific food/drink? Make a list of which food your body receives well, feel satisfied with and you can stop eating and also which food you keep craving after eating them. Observe with no judgement. The more inquisitive and judgement free you are with your body, the more information it will give you.