Weight loss transitions: How to shake off the ‘fat person’ inside

February 25, 2014 - Psychology

fat person insideKeeping your weight loss up isn’t just about what goes into your mouth – it’s also about what goes on in your head.

After your weight loss, no matter how happy and excited you feel about your new shape, it can be hard to let go of the person you used to be. These insecurities, if left unchecked, can come back to haunt you and perhaps cause you to slip back into your old habits. Here, we look at how to shift the focus from weight loss to long-term weight management.

Embrace change – gradually
As you will have learnt on your weight loss journey, change doesn’t happen overnight. Even if we have grand plans and ideas about the direction we want our lives to take, more often than not, when it comes to the crunch, actually turning our goals into reality and embracing change can seem overwhelming – so we give up trying altogether.

‘You’ve already come a long way – you’ve proven you have the strength and determination to lose the weight. Change doesn’t have to be difficult. It is just about finding ways to cope, to deal with the lows as well as the highs, until that change becomes habitual,’ says psychotherapist Mandy Cassidy.

With LighterLife, your journey doesn’t stop when you hit your new, healthy weight. The Management groups are there to guide you through this process of change – where you say goodbye to unhelpful old habits and embrace positive, new ones.

Learn the value of ‘you’
If you’ve started a new job or been promoted in the past, you may well have felt stress and anxiety at the start – but you persevered because there was something really worthwhile that you valued at the end.

It may help to think of your weight in similar terms; if your health and wellbeing is something you value, you owe it yourself to work at maintaining your healthy new weight.

Dress for who you are now
Your clothing isn’t just a superficial indicator of your tastes and preferences – it can also have a psychological impact on how you feel about yourself. You may be used to hiding yourself behind baggy clothes. Now that you’ve reached your goal, it’s time to shed those layers and start investing in yourself. If you’re not sure how the ‘new you’ could look, why not take some time out with a personal shopper to have a chat and think about styles that you’ve never tried before? House of Fraser offers a free personal shopper service.

It’s not just about changing your outfit – it’s about considering your outlook as well.

Speak up for yourself
Before your weight loss, you may have shied away from the spotlight, allowing others to make decisions or comments that affected you. Now that you have reached your goal, it’s important that you assert yourself. If people are reacting negatively to your weight loss, it might be that they don’t understand what you’ve been through. Explain to them how you feel

Listen to yourself
Next time you have feelings of guilt, anxiety or hostility around food, don’t dwell on them as negatives and be tempted to undo all your good work. Instead, recognise how you feel and view this as a sign of progress – gradually you’ll accept that you are capable of changing and you’ll be able to move forward.

For more information about the LighterLife Management programme, click here.