Tomorrow marks the beginning of a new month. Don’t wait until the New Year to start making resolutions. Make them NOW and think about how much better you’ll feel, physically and psychologically, come January!
Drinking water throughout the day is good for you in so many ways. We buy reusable cups with big plastic straws attached, which makes drinking water so much easier. They also come in different designs so get one you like and bottoms up!
Sabotaging Thought: My life is so busy, I just don’t have the time to diet correctly.
Response: I don’t have time because I’m not making time. If I had to get dialysis every morning I would make the time for it NO MATTER WHAT. Dieting takes a lot of time in the beginning so I have to make it a top priority it or will not happen, but as it gets easier it will take less and less time. It’s all a matter of priorities.
Being healthy and maintaining weight loss is a combination of a healthy diet AND exercise. Since 5 minutes of exercise a day is better than 0 minutes, there is no excuse for not finding at least a few minutes each day to get moving.
So often we hear from dieters, “I felt so good when I stayed in control,” and “I felt really bad when I ate way too much.” When dieters finally learn to gain control over their thinking and eating, dieting feels GREAT, not terrible.
If you eat out this weekend and stay in control, give yourself a lot of credit. When you get home make sure you don’t say to yourself, “I was so good, now I deserve to treat myself,” because you will undo all your hard work. Losing weight is the best treat!
Dieters can eat a slice of cake in 5 bites or 20 bites. Either way it’s the same amount of food, but they get to enjoy 15 more bites when they eat slowly and in smaller pieces, which greatly increases their level of satisfaction.
Answer: For a lot of our dieters, the phrase NO CHOICE is extremely useful because it helps them reduce dieting struggles. If they want to give in to a craving, have a second helping at dinner, or eat a bag of chips while zoning out in front of the television, they can tell themselves, “Absolutely not. NO CHOICE. I’m not going have it.” When dieters, even subconsciously, give themselves a choice about something, like eating a cookie they just saw in the break room, it sets up the uncomfortable struggle of should I/shouldn’t I have this, which often sounds something like:
I really want to eat this.
But I know I shouldn’t because it’s not on my plan.
But it looks really good.
But it might jeopardize my diet.
But just having a little bit won’t matter.
But it will matter because it will set up a sugar craving.
But just this one time won’t hurt.
When dieters engage in this struggle, it makes it harder for them to make the right choice, especially if their sabotaging thoughts are strong and they don’t yet have good responses to them. In this way, just ignoring all the sabotaging thoughts and telling themselves, “NO CHOICE,” is very helpful in getting past the difficult situation.
However, some of our dieters don’t like the No Choice phrase and sometimes find themselves rebelling against the notion of not having a choice, so we don’t use it with them. Many dieters in this camp prefer thinking about it terms of actually having a choice that they are making. “I choose not to give into this craving,” or “I choose to not have any of those cookies because my weight loss goals are much more important to me.” Sometimes the phrase, “I choose,” can be just as powerful as the phrase, “No Choice.”
The advantage of dieters using the “I choose” phrase is that it cuts down on any rebellion because it reminds dieters that they are doing this because they want to, and because it will enable them to reach their goals for themselves (and not the diet coach’s goals for them). That way they don’t have to feel like their diet coach is the one pushing them to do something unnecessarily or taking away their free will in any way. Because, after all, dieters are ultimately the ones in charge of everything that they do or don’t eat and it is up to them to choose what that will be. For some dieters, a possible disadvantage of using “I choose” or not using “No Choice,” is that then they are still engaging in the should I/shouldn’t I struggle if they initially forget why it’s worth it to make the choices that will get them to their goals.
So the answer is no, this is not necessarily something that you have to work on or accept. We understand that each and every dieter is unique and will respond differently to each thought and response. While some phrases and responses are helpful to a great number of dieters, that doesn’t mean it is true for everyone. If “No Choice,” isn’t right for you then you just need to figure out what other phrases or responses will be helpful to you in those moments when the sabotaging thoughts are the strongest. For every sabotaging thought there is a helpful response!
Sabotaging Thought: I just don’t care.
Response: While it’s true that I don’t care right at this moment, I’m going to care A LOT a few minutes from now if I jeopardize my diet and weight loss. I can’t let this one moment of not caring influence how I act because I know I will care again, and when I do, I’ll be SO happy and proud I didn’t give in.
In life, everyone has to do things they don’t want to do, like turning work in on time, paying bills, and getting up early with their kids. People are able to do so because they don’t give themselves a choice about it. We teach dieters to not give themselves a choice where dieting is concerned, too.
The Beck Diet Program was developed by Dr. Judith S. Beck with Deborah Beck Busis, LCSW.
Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy is a leading international source for training, therapy, and resources in CBT.
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