If you keep sabotaging your weight loss efforts and don’t know why, read on! Recently, I was speaking to a friend who told me that she has never felt good about her body. She has been teased and bullied about her weight throughout her life. She has also felt like she needed to feel negatively about herself either with her weight or with her career achievements because it would make her siblings feel badly about their own lives if she had success in all areas of hers. This, she said, was her “place”, so she overeats anytime she starts to feel good about herself to keep the status quo. That broke my heart. When I look at her, I see an amazingly successful and beautiful woman. I had no idea she felt so badly about herself. I also recently had a client tell me that they are afraid of weight loss because the people in their life weren’t supportive when they lost weight previously.
Why do we put ourselves down to try to make others feel better about themselves? Why do we settle for less than what we want because other people might not support us due to their own hang-ups? Why do we put ourselves down because we feel like we don’t deserve anything better? It is time to stop!!
The reality is, you are not doing yourself or others any favors by living a life that doesn’t make you happy. If your mother, brother, spouse or friend doesn’t like the healthy changes you make for yourself, that is about them, not you. Weight loss tends to bring up insecurites in other people. It makes them self-conscious about their body and they start to feel pressure to make changes. Just like lobsters in a boiling pot, they will pull you back in until you go down with them. It isn’t usually conscious. I don’t believe most people intend to be malicious in this process, but it can be damaging all the same.
So, take the steps to start feeling like you deserve happiness. By addressing the underlying self-talk telling you that you don’t deserve happiness, it will be amazing what shifts in your life. By identifying and establishing healthy boundaries with those around you, you will be able to separate your “stuff” from theirs. Counseling is a great tool to get down to the bottom of this issue and help you feel better about yourself.