How to Ditch the Diet Mentality
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Ever wonder how to ditch the diet mentality? What even is a diet mentality? It seems that everywhere you look, someone is either going on or getting off of a diet. It’s like a roller coaster ride but it’s not quite as fun.
What is the diet mentality?
Diet mentality is a something many of us get caught up in. It’s all about our thought process and how we have viewed the whole “diet” world in the past. Most of us go on a diet to lose weight. It’s pretty much what we want the end result to be.
A diet is a meal plan, a set of rules, something that dictates what, when, how, and why you eat. It has a bit of control over us when we allow it. It gives you “structure”, a false sense of security and control. It’s generally never something that is sustainable.
A diet can be so restrictive that it is impossible to follow and can sometimes bring us to the point of almost losing our sanity. When that borderline of our sanity comes about, we tend to “fail” at one little thing in our diet and then we feel like we have failed. We give up only to feel defeated and frustrated, once again, that our diet didn’t work.
So basically a diet mentality is one of thinking we MUST follow a “diet” a certain way and if we don’t, we have completely failed and we give up until something new comes along.
How to ditch the diet mentality!
So how the heck do we ditch this way of thinking and move forward with being able to successfully lose weight? You KICK THE DIET TO THE CURB, ditch the diet mentality!! Stop “going on” diets only to “go off of them”!
Here’s why going on a diet doesn’t work:
- Diets are temporary
- Diets can be overly restrictive
- Diets can make you over obsess about food
- Diets are often unhealthy
There is a definite difference between “going on” a diet and HAVING a diet. This is where the ditching the diet mentality comes in. It’s all about how you think about the word diet. you can look at in a restrictive way or a healthy way.
Make Healthy Food Choices
In order to ditch the diet mentality, you need to look at food differently. Take into consideration that food is fuel for your body. It allows you to do the things you do each day. It gives you energy and nourishes your system. When you look at making healthier food choices instead of counting every darn calorie or making sure it all fits the “diet” you’re on, it makes life a bit easier.
If you eat like crap, you feel like crap. When you have a DIET instead of “go on” a diet you look at food in a healthier way and tend to make healthier food choices. Educate yourself about your food choices and choose what is best for your body.
The more you learn about the nutritional value of food and the benefits it has for your body, the more inclined you will be to make healthier choices. Making healthy choices gives you confidence and motivates you to make even more healthy choices. One baby step at a time you’ll start ditching the diet mentality.
Think Long Term
I always say, if what you’re doing now to lose or maintain your weight is something you can see yourself doing 5 years from now, you’re good. If it’s not manageable, realistic, or long-term sustainable you’re setting yourself up for failure. You have to keep your health in mind, that’s the difference you’ll see when you ditch the diet mentality.
To achieve sustainable results of any kind, the changes you make in your eating habits need to be ones you can do regularly for life. The changes you make should be ones you can easily come back to when life gets in the way.
Ask yourself if you will be eating this way a year from now. If that seems like no big deal, awesome! However, if your instinct is, “ I hope I can make it 30 days!”, this is not a sustainable change for you. Make the changes something you can do long term.
Look at your goals and priorities
I always ask my clients what their goals are. I like when they give me realistic goals like, “I want to be healthier for my kids”. That is a goal with a huge priority attached to it. Be realistic with your goals and prioritize them accordingly. Don’t go “on a diet” to lose weight or fit into certain size jeans. For the love of all that is holy, please realize every size 6 jeans are all different and you may fit into one brand and not the other…and ya know what, THAT’S OKAY!!
Don’t make it a priority to fit into something or look a certain way. That’s old school diet mentality. You should look at the food you eat as something that will improve your overall health and wellness. Make it a priority to feel better, to have more energy and to live a longer healthier life. And ya know what, that weight loss comes along as a side effect and you may just fit into those jeans but please don’t make that your focus. You are so much more than a number on a scale or a dress size.
Quit making yourself wrong
With the diet mentality, we tend to make ourselves wrong with every little mistake we make because we think it is supposed to go a certain way. We beat ourselves up when we don’t do everything according to the “rules”. If we slip up or fail, we immediately internalize it and blame ourselves. We may feel like we are failures, lazy, or incapable of reaching our goals. None of this is true!!
Stop making yourself wrong by judging. It is not wrong to be human and make mistakes. We’ve all done it and I can tell you there is no rulebook that I have found that says we are all wrong.
What I do know is this…we must be patient with ourselves and have some compassion. This whole changing from the diet mentality to simply having a diet is a process and if we apply the tips above, things will get easier over time. I teach this to my clients all the time. Look to make small daily improvements that will put you on the right path to improving your overall health and wellness and you’ll do just fine.
It’s time to ditch the diet mentality and focus on simply becoming a better version of yourself one day at a time.
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