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Losing weight: 6 psychological obstacles that prevent you from reaching your goal

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Losing weight: 6 psychological obstacles that prevent you from reaching your goal
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Losing weight is a common topic for our articles at Heath and Wellness. We are often looking for a better and more healthy body whether it is through dieting, knowing the latest food tends or knowing the foods that pose a risk to our health.  However we can also decide to lose weight so that we feel better, more beautiful, more comfortable in our skin and confident enough to tackle anything that comes our way.  These desires can often be thwarted by psychological obstacles that are ingrained inside us.   Let’s have a look at six of the most common stumbling blocks that can prevent us from losing weight.

1/ Fluctuating motivation

Motivation is a strength which encourages you to succeed in previously fixed objectives.  When you start to work on you weight or your heath, your ultimate aim is often to loose weight.  This goal can be formed by multiple reasons and can push you to give everything you’ve got so that you can succeed.  But you can often suffer from a fluctuating motivation that can stop you in your tracks.

When your motivation decreases this can be a very powerful obstacle that prevents you from losing weight.  You therefore need to understand where your motivation comes from and what is causing it to drop?

Now you need to find a way to pick up your motivation so that you can hinder these fluctuations.  The final aim is to develop a way to increase your motivation rather than to halt it.

2/ Choosing difficulties

Choosing is giving up.
André Gide

Choice and giving up are also significant stumbling blocks that can prevent us from losing weight.  Choosing something causes an imbalance as we need to abandon something else.  When you let something go, the grief and separation is not always something that is easy to live with.

So that you an get over this problem of choice, we need to be the actors of our own decisions.  This way, the choices we make are deliberate and we can’t suffer from them anymore. They are made with full awareness and knowledge of the causes and effect, which makes them more acceptable.

3/ Self effectiveness

Self effectiveness is the belief in our own abilities to succeed and fulfill a goal or objective.

When we want to lose weight, self effectiveness gives us the courage to say that “I am able to lose a couple stone so I feel better.”  However if these feelings start to dwindle, we will inevitably fall back into bad eating habits.   Now you no longer feel capable of achieving anything.

This phenomenon is accentuated by the presence of a nutritional specialist. We are constantly relying on their skills. Although this trust is normal and useful, it must not substitute for our own actions. We need to have confidence in our abilities and our ability to succeed in our aims.

There are three main situations where our feeling of self-effectiveness could decrease:

  • Eating emotions: “I’m happy, so I eat” or “I’m sad, so I eat. ” We must learn to manage our emotions if we want to manage our eating habits.
  • Food provision: When we do our shopping, we should avoid all sweet products, fat or otherwise, so as not to be tempted. But these acts of avoidance that do not solve anything. They camouflage problems by making them unavailable and therefore we do not learn to eat with reason.
  • Social pressure: we do not necessarily know how to say no when we are offered something to eat.
se regarder dans le miroir régime poids
© iStock

4/ Emotional management

A person that is overcome by very strong emotions often can’t managed there eating habits appropriately.

Emotions are seen under an angle of addiction.  If the someone is overcome by a strong emotion whether it is anxiety, fear, joy or sadness, they will often seek comfort in the foods they eat.  This is similar to an addict  who finds comfort in dangerous substances or behaviours.

Learning to manage your emotions is again the best way to regulate what you eat.

You can also read: How do your emotions affect your health?

5/ Self esteem and body acceptance

Other stumbling blocks when it comes to losing weight can be your relationship with others and your self esteem.  Without a positive or good self esteem it is difficult to succeed in many things.

Some techniques help to improve and increase your self esteem.  This type of self confidence is linked to the acceptance of our body.  Our body is what people see and can be submitted to cultural, social and media related constraints.

Learning to like our body is often necessary.  Our body helps us to express ourselves so it doesn’t deserve being constantly lead down the wrong route.  Let’s have a look at a surprising technique that can help you to learn to your body.

Take some time to yourself.  Concentrate on your body and thank it for everything that it does for you and that it allows you to do.  A simple thank you can really help!

imc de l'enfant courbe de corpulence
© adrian825 / iStock

6/ Imposing certain types of foods

All of us have thoughts or preconceived ideas about our diet.  The way we have been brought up by our family and the media cultural can give us a precise idea about certain types of food.  From childhood, we have learn to register the things that we can and can’t do when it come to our diet.

“Don’t eat that”, “It is not the season to eat that”, “This food is for adults, not for children”.

All these familiar concepts are ingrained into us. As a result we can sometimes disconnect completely from our taste-bud sensations and have preconceived ideas about what is good and bad for us or what we like or don’t like.

On top of this we can add all the other concepts that are fed to us by the television, the media and books. However we should try and learn our likes, dislikes and desires when it comes to foods and their flavourings.  This way we can breakdown certain psychological obstacles that have been build up since childhood.


Related articles:

Dieting: The risks and advantages of eating one meal a day?

Wanting a flat stomach? These 5 natural foods will help

Nutrition: 4 foods you think are bad for you but are actually good!