So, you want to lose weight. You might be 20 lbs. overweight, 50 lbs. overweight, or 100 lbs. overweight. Whatever the case, you’ve finally reached that point where you’ve said “enough is enough.” It’s now time to change. It’s time to lose the weight, for real this time.
But, do you know why?
I mean, the real reason.
The answer might seem obvious. You simply don’t want to be overweight anymore. But, why?
Before we go any further, let’s get clear on why we need to go where we’re going. Countless people every day start on a journey to lose weight. Most of them give up at some point before losing all of the weight. The reason is simple: their motive for losing weight wasn’t strong enough. They didn’t really know why they wanted to change. More than likely, they did have good reasons in the beginning. There are plenty of good reasons out there: to look better, feel better, be healthier, live longer, move better, and others. More often than not, despite how noble the cause, those reasons don’t hold up so well under the stress of eating less and exercising more consistently.
So, there must be something more — a deeper reason to stick with things when it gets hard and you want to give up. Well, there is…and we’re going to find it.
Here are three steps to getting crystal clear on your real weight loss why.
1. Start with the obvious stuff
What’s the first thought that motivated you to START the journey to lose weight? What inspired you enough to want to change?
Sometimes we see a transformation that someone else has gone through. It’s the before and after picture effect. We want what the after picture is telling us. It’s not just about losing weight. We want whatever it is we think losing the weight will do for us.
Anyway, back to your reason. Why did you decide to lose weight? What do you hope to get from it? Whatever it is, write it down. Get clear about your most obvious reason by putting it into words (most people never actually do this).
2. Go back to the beginning
Where did that “obvious” answer come from? Why did you come up with that particular thought and not others? That thought didn’t come out of thin air. It was cultivated. It’s the expression of something deeper, something in your story. Let’s go back and find its origin — back when the excess weight first started finding its way on your body.
To start, try to remember the first time you were aware you were overweight? When we see an overweight version of ourselves in the mirror, it’s a reminder of who we were when things started to go wrong. It may not be something traumatic, but something was off. Something caused you to make choices that negatively affected your body — enough that you want to change it.
Maybe you were coping with the effects of stress. Maybe you were lonely, sad, or hurting. Maybe you have always been overweight because it was just an effect of your normal life (family, friends, etc. were also overweight.) Maybe you were just busy. Whatever it was, it directly affected your health. Seeing a less-than-best version of your body in the mirror is a reminder of that — of subtle mistakes made as a result of trying your best to cope with something.
3. Ask WHY until you can’t
This may seem too simple, but it’s profoundly powerful.
You might have a little bit clearer picture now of what caused you to gain the weight. This next part is going to be a bit difficult, but not impossible. It’s just going to require you to find answers to deep questions and put them into words — probably for the first time.
With the thought of why you first gained weight still in your head, ask why? Why did you gain the weight? The answer may be something along the lines of “I ate too much”. With whatever answer you get, ask why again? “I ate too much because I was stressed”. Ask why again. (“Why was I stressed?” And so on.)
Each answer is going to be a little more difficult to answer because now you’re venturing more into the subconscious. You’ve probably never put these thoughts and feelings into words.
Ask until you can’t. Ask until you end up somewhere deep in your heart, because that’s where these questions ultimately lead. The real reason you want to lose weight is found there.
The Real Reason
What you’ll find there, deep below the surface, is the reason — the real reason. At some point, things changed. “You” began to change. Pain happens. Disappointment happens. Stress begins to have a stronger effect. Other negative emotions make their way in and your brain tries to help ease the damage they can cause. Again, all this is happening below the surface, almost never consciously obvious. But we feel it.
So, we eat more. We eat things that make us feel better in the moments when we don’t feel good. We avoid feeling uncomfortable. We don’t exercise. We train the brain to treat the symptoms of this deep thing. Time goes by. We gain weight as a side effect.
“You” started to change and become someone different, with a different body, too. When you look in the mirror now, you see this new person — this person that you know deep inside is not the real you.
And there it is. The real reason.
Your goal is not just to get a better-looking body or to live longer. The real goal is to become “you” again. You need to lose the weight because the real you is not overweight.
This might seem too simple, but it’s what we are after at the core of who we are. We want a body that reflects the person we know we are, deep inside. The real you is not overweight.
Become the real you again. You CAN do it. You WILL do it.
For real this time.
Originally published at forrealthisti.me.
Originally published at medium.com