How Journaling Creates a Strong Mindset for Long-Term Weight loss

  Saturday, February 19, 2022

When the first blooms of spring appear, it's a sure indicator that bathing suit season is just around the corner. While it's impossible to avoid the need to work out and eat a healthy diet, long-term weight loss begins in your mind. According to experts, having the appropriate attitude can help you think and believe in healthy practices. When it comes to losing weight and striving to become healthier, we often concentrate on our activities and routines, such as what we consume and how we move. However, reducing weight is also about our attitudes and beliefs — in other words, it's a mental and physical game.

According to Pamela Peeke, MD, author of Fit to Live, if you want to lose weight, you need to "reduce the mental fat, and that will lead to lowering the waistline fat." "Take a look at the patterns and habits you're carrying around in your life that are getting in the way of your achievement."

Everyone has their own set of justifications. Most people succeed in improving their lifestyle and nutrition until something goes wrong — whether it's work pressure, family concerns, or something else. Whatever your own problem is, if you want to succeed, you must break the pattern.

Why Mindset Matters

The term "mindset" relates to your self-perception and beliefs, which shape your behavior, outlook, and attitude. For example, if you consider you are doomed to fail, you are more likely to abandon a weight-loss program when you experience setbacks. This is because self-defeating thought patterns might make weight loss harder.

On the other hand, if you feel you are capable of successfully adapting to change and adopting new healthy habits, this may help boost diet motivation. One component of a beneficial weight loss mindset is ensuring that failures and problems do not negatively impact your positive attitude toward your weight reduction quest. 

Weight loss desire and success can be influenced by your thinking, according to CSIRO behavioral scientist Dr. Emily Brindal. "When you're trying to change your behavior, your mindset is really important. And the great news is that it's something you can change," she says. "It's something you can improve, you can feel better about yourself, you can feel better about your environment. And we know that when people feel happier and more positive, they're more likely to try harder to reach their goals and continue along a challenging journey."

5 Ways To Create A Weight Loss Mindset 

This challenge is not directed at you to lose weight in five days because we agree that it's foolish and impossible. This challenge is directed at you to find the easiest and most efficient way to develop a weight loss mindset that will aid you in your journey further to being your healthiest self. These five days are wrapped around a journaling challenge, where you face everything standing in front of you as a hurdle to losing weight. In your journal, you'll write down everything you've learned each day by answering the questions we provide you. We'll also provide you with further information for the topic each day in a Youtube video. For each day, we will discuss an important aspect of your life that may be stopping you from becoming healthier and how to overcome that problem. 

Weight loss journaling is essential since it allows you to perform a few things:

  • It keeps your thoughts focused on your weight loss goals regularly.
  • It assists you in setting an aim for your daily health practices.
  • It allows you to become more aware of your thoughts and feelings.

The first benefit of weight loss journaling is that it allows you to keep track of your feelings and ideas. This is critical for sticking to your good routines and staying motivated. We sometimes need a reminder first thing in the morning to remind us why it's so crucial to put in the effort to lose weight. You can keep track of your progress by signing up with JournalOwl.

Step 1: Ask Yourself What the Endgame Is 

Wanting too much too soon is a key mental roadblock to weight loss. Weight reduction is too sluggish for most dieters to be satisfied. Blame it on our instant-gratification society with instant messaging, PDAs, and digital photography. "Losers are looking for rapid results. Even though it took them years to build weight, they have little patience with the recommended weekly weight loss of 1-2 pounds," Cynthia Sass, MS, RD, an American Dietetic Association spokesman, agrees.

However, you'll see the finest results if you reduce weight gradually. Sass reminds them that they're likely losing water or lean tissue, not fat when people lose weight too quickly. "When you lose lean tissue, metabolism slows down, making it even harder to lose weight," she adds.

To begin any journey, you must have a clear idea of what you want to accomplish. Do you have a dress or a pair of pants in mind that you'd like to fit into? Do you want to lower your blood pressure, so you don't have to use medication? Make your vision specific by writing down why it is essential to you.

"Write it all down on a piece of paper," says Accredited Practising Dietitian Pennie McCoy. "You need to be really clear on what it is you want to achieve, and you need to have a strong, clear focus on why it is important to you without comparing yourself to anyone else."

You can have health professionals, your doctor, and your dietitian telling you what you ought to be doing what goals you should be attained. Still, it is extremely difficult to stay motivated unless you truly want to make the changes. This is the perfect start to journaling down your answers to:

  1. Why is it important for me to lose weight?
  2. What is the extra weight I have costing me in my life right now?
  3. What are my weight loss goals?

Step 2: Figure Out Your Relationship With Food 

It's time to address one of modern society's most troublesome relationships: people and food. People frequently feel as if they are engaged in a perplexing and humiliating war with their food. We are haunted by food-related childhood memories. This is how one book claims to stop food cravings, while another asserts something completely different. One celebrity food blogger deemed these dishes harmful, but they are deemed healthy by another. It's no surprise that many of us have a distorted idea of what constitutes a healthy dinner. You'd want to find a way out if you were in a dysfunctional relationship with someone, right? The same may be said for food.

You can be using unhealthy foods as an emotional crutch if you crave chips when you're sad or eat chocolate cake when you're joyful but not hungry. Your relationship with food may be on the rocks if you link shame with particular foods, especially when you eat them in public. Because of years of judgment from others, inaccurate messaging in the media, and a collective misunderstanding of unhealthy meals, many of us have been taught to have these bad associations.

It's normal in our fast-paced society to eat a meal while watching TV or even standing over the kitchen sink. Before you eat, take a moment to check in with yourself: are you eating to satisfy your hunger or fill an emotional void? Also, don't eat when multitasking. Make eating a meal a relaxing ritual where you can relish each bite and detect the first signals of satiety.

If you routinely seek unhealthy meals when you're stressed, you should consider finding an alternative way to cope with your feelings. Understanding why you turn to food in difficult situations can help you change your entire eating perspective. After you've sat a while with these thoughts, ask yourself: 

  1. How do I want to feel about my eating choices at the end of the day?
  2. What relationship do I want to have with food?
  3. What have I learned about my eating habits?

Step 3: Reset Your Fitness Mindset 

If you connect gym class with dread, embarrassment, or a sense of failure as a youngster, it may influence how you see your own physical talents years later — and how likely you are to get off the couch as an adult. According to a recent major study from Iowa State University, people with dreadful gym memories were less inclined to exercise as adults. Those who remembered gym class warmly were more likely to keep active years later. Shilagh A. Mirgain, Ph.D., a noted psychologist with UW Health's Department of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, says this isn't surprising. 

You might think exercise means being on the treadmill for a certain period, but those kinds of assumptions can be a barrier," Mirgain explains. "Exercise is just moving your body." Consider the full spectrum of activities that can get you moving, whether it's dancing to music in your living room or doing tai chi in the park.

Holly Beach, MD, Banner – University Medical Center South in Tucson, Arizona, is a primary care sports medicine specialist. People of all fitness levels, she said, might struggle to find the motivation. "It affects everyone," she said. "Even the most elite athletes struggle to motivate themselves from time to time. The important thing is to not beat yourself up over it. Take a little time and then revisit your reasons for exercising and get back on track."

We've all got that one friend who can't stop running. They've never felt more free and happy than when jogging along the city route. But it hurts no matter how hard we lace up. The same sport will not appeal to everyone. Get imaginative in your fitness quest, and keep in mind that exercise can be a lot of fun. Grab a pair of cross-country skis, enroll in a boxing class, kick a soccer ball with your kids, sign your dog up for an agility lesson, buy a used couple of rollerblades... You can attempt as many different sports as you want. It'll click when you locate the proper sport (or sports!) for you, in the same way, that your friend discovered running.

Ask yourself this: 

  1. How will I get some exercise today?
  2. What have I learned about my exercise habits?
  3. What activities can I take up to get more exercise? 

Step 4: Break Your Bad Habits

Shreya Katyal, Nutritionist, Dietician, and Founder of Diets & More, says," The problem with everyone who is trying to lose weight is 'unawareness.' Many of us don't know that certain eating habits which we are following are doing more harm to our body than any good. Old habits die hard, but if one is serious about eating healthy and losing weight, first, they need to understand unhealthy eating habits and then ditch it completely."

Whether good or bad, Habits are repeated patterns of behavior that we do without conscious thought, says Jo Anne White, Ph.D., a life coach, and professor at Temple University in Philadelphia. Taking conscious control is the key to altering habits and keeping them changed, according to White. To begin, decide to break the negative behavior and select a date for when you'll start. Then, write down and think about why you want to change. "Once you've physically done something -- in this case, writing it down -- your action gives power to your mental commitment," says White. "It tells you: Now you're serious."

Habits are hard to break, but you can't keep doing things the same way you always have if you want to lose weight. "Slowly but steadily, attempt to discover where you're engaged in weight-gaining behaviors and reverse them with small actions that you can do without feeling deprived," Sass advises. For example, if you're an evening couch potato, start by replacing your snack with a piece of fruit instead of a bag of cookies or chips. Try drinking only a calorie-free drink the next night. You can eventually start doing activities while watching TV.

Another strategy to start breaking poor habits is to get rid of your kitchen's enticing, empty-calorie meals and replace them with healthy alternatives.

After your day of introspection, answer these questions: 

  1. What are my bad habits? 
  2. What is 1 healthy habit I'm willing to improve by 1%? 
  3. How can I substitute those bad habits for healthier choices? 

Step 5: Love Yourself To Lose Weight 

It may seem contradictory to try to love oneself while losing weight. After all, if you're working so hard to change your physique, it's safe to assume you don't like it as it is. It is unnecessary to choose between striving to get healthy and loving your current physique. Begin by considering your weight in the light of your overall health. That means seeing beyond the digits on the scale, the fit of your pants, and, yes, even what you see with the mirror.

Starting a healthy weight-loss program should motivate, excite, and make you feel good about yourself. It also necessitates patience and time. This may seem like a large order, but remember that when you approach weight loss from self-acceptance and love, you are more likely to establish realistic objectives and allow for the small failures and frustrations that are a common major hurdle for many people.

Start each day by telling yourself that you will do your best no matter what happened the day before. Thinking of each day as a new beginning will help you avoid getting caught up in the pattern of negative self-talk that leads to many people abandoning their weight-loss objectives early on.

It may appear ridiculous, yet it can assist in the natural development of self-kindness (and limit self-doubt, which can lead to self-loathing). Remembering what you like about yourself puts you in the correct frame of mind to care for your body as well.

Consider the benefits your body has provided you. It got you to the finish line of your half marathon and delivered you two wonderful children. The body in which you may feel depressed has definitely provided you with many opportunities and joys. It's crucial to appreciate yourself when you're losing weight by reflecting on those events and everything that's yet to come. Here are your final questions to answer: 

  1. What did I do in the past that I doubted I could, but I did it anyway? How can I apply that to my weight loss?
  2. How do I feel about my ability to lose weight? Why?
  3. What negative thoughts do I have about my ability to lose weight? How can I make them positive?

Health Disclaimer

JournalOwl is not intended to be a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis, medical treatment, medication, or therapy. Always seek the advice of your physician or qualified mental health provider with any questions you may have regarding any mental health symptoms or conditions. JournalOwl is not authorized to make recommendations about medication or serve as a substitute for professional advice. You should never disregard professional psychological or medical advice, or delay in seeking treatment, based on anything you read on JournalOwl’s website or platform.

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