If you’ve struggled to lose weight in the past, or if you’ve lost weight and then gained it back, it’s important to remember that what you’ve done before just doesn’t work – if it did, you'd be at the weight you want. If you want this time to be different, you have to do things differently, even if it means you lose weight more slowly.
Our diet tips provide daily motivation and problem solving to help you stick to your diet plan. It’s an extra bit of motivation to help you start your day right.
Sabotaging Thought: I have to eat whenever I feel hungry.
Response: In reality, I really WANT to eat when I’m hungry, but I don’t need to eat [because I don’t have any medical problems]. While experiencing hunger may not be pleasant, it’s not so uncomfortable that I can’t keep doing what I’m doing. I can handle it!
If you think, “It’s okay to eat this one unplanned food, it won’t matter,” remind yourself that slip-ups usually have a more lasting effect on the rest of your day. If you allow yourself to get off track in the morning or afternoon, you’re much more likely to continue making off-track food decisions later in the day. It does matter!
Many dieters find that once they gain control over their eating, it helps them feel better, and more in control, in general. Feeling in control and on track can have a positive spillover effect into so many other areas of your life!
If you think, “It’s the weekend, I don’t want to think about healthy eating. I just want to relax and enjoy,” remind yourself that if you choose to not ‘think’ about it now, you’ll definitely think about it Monday morning when the scale has gone up and your clothes don’t fit as well. So think about it now, or think about it later, either way you’re going to think about it.
Remember, cravings are like itches. The more you pay attention to them, the worse they get but the moment you get really distracted is the moment the craving starts to go away. You NEVER need to eat to make a craving go away. Turning your attention completely to something else is just as effective.
Sabotaging Thought: When I’m dieting, there are good foods that I should eat and bad foods that I should stay away from.
Response: There are no good foods and bad foods, just foods that I should eat more of and foods that I should eat less of.
Often dieters say things like, “I had such a hard week.” In many cases, however, it was really only hard for a few hours on a few days, but they tend to let the memory of one or two hard times color their perception of the week as a whole. It’s important to maintain a clear perspective so you don’t get discouraged by circumstances that aren’t an accurate reflection of reality!
Cutting out all desserts never works for the long term because you’ll eventually eat them again and, when you do, go way overboard. Because of this, it’s actually IMPORTANT that you work treats into your diet to prove to yourself that you can eat them in reasonable portions. Desserts are a necessary part of rest-of-your-life eating!
If you eat out this weekend, go in with a plan! And, remind yourself that you don’t need to eat everything on your plate (because eating it won’t bring the money back), and that just because everyone else is having something doesn’t mean you should (because your body doesn’t know or care what anyone else is eating).
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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