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How to Stop Self Sabotage – Coaching Lesson #1

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You have all the motivation in the world to lose weight. You’re doing everything right: you eat healthily, avoid carbs and mini-malls with tempting FroYo counters; you even take some exercise.

Then the weekend hits. You’ve promised your friend you would drop by her party. You ate before in preparation—you will avoid the dessert table. You make a point to engage in conversations away from the food. You’re doing great; you’re on the right track.

And then…

Hours later, after your third cocktail, you lock eyes with the chocolate mousse cake. A little voice in your head reassures you that, “Just one bite won’t hurt.” You are tantalized by the spoonful of mouthwatering moussey delight only to realize minutes later that you’ve just scarfed down a great big chunk of cake. Your first thought is, “Oh God, I can’t believe I ate the whole thing!”

Then guilt logic kicks in. “Well, I already blew it, so I might as well have another piece. I’ll get right back on track tomorrow.” After more chocolate cake, you go on to a “sampling” of everything on the whole damn table. By the time you get home, you’re so overwhelmed with guilt that you continue to binge until you’re absolutely stuffed.

Sound familiar?

Why is it that one minute you are determined and resolved and making all the right choices, and the next moment you’re sabotaging yourself by overeating?

This inner power struggle results when two competing parts of you want different things. One part wants to lose weight, and the other part keeps you from shedding those extra pounds for some underlying, compelling reason. Perhaps that reason is concern that you’ll feel deprived, or your friends will treat you differently if you look better, or maybe you feel afraid of a big change and are comfortable with the status quo. This part of you actually benefits from the extra weight.

Once you resolve this internal conflict, it will be easy for you to lose weight. So let’s examine the positive intention of the part of you that is against you losing weight.

Action Step #1: What’s Your Truth?
In this section, you are going to use something called a truth statement. A truth statement is simply a way to measure a belief you have about yourself.

For example, if you live in the United States, say out loud, “I live in the United States.” See what it feels like to say that. This will be your baseline of what a 10 feels like. (If you do not live in the US, use where you live to complete the statement.)

Now say out loud, “I live on the moon.” See what it feels like to say that out loud. This will be your baseline of what 0 feels like.

To rate feelings on the 0‒10 scale, I always tell people to use their intuition. The right number will just pop into your head.

In the comment box below, write down your answers to each of the following statements. At the end of your answer, rate how true the statement is for you on a scale from 0‒10. 0 would be not true at all and 10 would be absolutely certain.

What does this extra weight do for you?
Examples:
It protects me from unwanted attention. 8
It gives me an excuse for not applying for the job I really want. 10
No one can reject me if I reject myself. 7
I can blame it for my not living up to my full potential. 6

Complete this sentence
If I were thin, I wouldn’t be able to:
Eat ever again. 7
Hide from the attention of men. 10
Feel afraid anymore. 5

What stops you from losing weight?
I don’t want to deprive myself. 6
It’s going to be too hard. 8
Everyone in my family is overweight. 9
I want to feel safe. 7

What did you learn about yourself? I’m sure you came up with some compelling reasons to keep the extra weight. These are not conscious reasons, but they stop you from reaching your goals.

Change can be scary. Stepping outside your status quo can bring up a lot of resistance in you and from the people close to you.

In the next lesson, I’ll show you how to reprogram these limiting beliefs with a few simple steps.

xo

Brittany

PS: If you think this could be useful to a friend, pass it along!
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24 Comments

  1. Maria
    Maria03-06-2013

    Thank you; very helpful, I’m looking forward to your next lesson.

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-06-2013

      Youre welcome Maria! Glad to help. :-)

  2. Heather
    Heather03-06-2013

    It brought up a memory of something I was not expecting and haven’t thought of in years. I’ve been doing WW for a year now and I am finally within 10 pounds of my goal. Every time I dip under that, I start self-sabotoging. You gave me something more to think about. Thank you.

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-15-2013

      youre so welcome heather! :-)

  3. Barb
    Barb03-06-2013

    I have a comment on this blog, which is–I’ve seen things like this before about “what does the extra weight do for you?” and I wonder… is it always the extra weight which is a “benefit” for us, or could it just be the eating itself?

    I don’t think I get a whole lot out of being overweight, but I do get a “benefit” from overeating–it calms me down, helps me deal with fear, anger, stress, and depression–and it’s a substitute for not feeling loved. For me, I think the overweight isn’t what I unconsciously want, but I want to have the comfort of food in large quantities, especially sweet, fatty foods. What do you think about this idea?

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-07-2013

      Hi Barb, thanks for your question, its a very good one.. Heres my answer: if there was no need for extra weight, there wouldn’t be any… Although you might not realize it consciously, unconsciously there is a very good reason for extra weight. You might have a belief about needing more protection to help you with stressful moments, or the extra pounds may feel like a warm blanket of love… Everyone is different, but I invite you to explore it.. More to come :-)

      Hugs,
      Britt

  4. Susan W.
    Susan W.03-15-2013

    Oh, truth hurts! I have a head injury from a car accident in1988. Since being out of my coma, I have no control over the amount of food I consume at mealtime. What should I do?

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-15-2013

      yikes! talk to your doctors first, then try the craving technique when you notice the urge.

  5. Jo
    Jo03-15-2013

    Brittany, thanks for the post. I’m not too overweight, I just need to lose about 10 pounds, and no one in my family is overweight, so most of the reasons you mentioned above don’t seem to apply to me. Do you have any other insights/ideas to help me?

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-15-2013

      There are lots of reasons people carry extra weight, Ill talk about it more in the coming weeks. Meanwhile check the blog for many more articles that can be helpful.

  6. Jo
    Jo03-15-2013

    What does this extra weight do for you?
    It protects me from unwanted attention. 0
    It gives me an excuse for not applying for the job I really want. 2
    No one can reject me if I reject myself. 8
    I can blame it for my not living up to my full potential. 9

    Complete this sentence
    If I were thin, I wouldn’t be able to:
    Eat ever again. 4
    Hide from the attention of men. 2
    Feel afraid anymore. 6

    What stops you from losing weight?
    I don’t want to deprive myself. 9
    It’s going to be too hard. 9
    Everyone in my family is overweight. 1
    I want to feel safe. 6

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-15-2013

      Thank you jo- sounds like youre using the weight to hide your true self…

  7. Jo
    Jo03-15-2013

    What does this extra weight do for you?
    It gives me an excuse to be unsuccessful 9
    It gives me a reason for being miserable 9
    It gives me a reason to hide away 8

    If I were thin, I wouldn’t be able to:
    Eat what I want when I want 8
    Do what I want 7
    Hide 8

    What stops you from losing weight?
    Willpower 8
    Fear of what I will have to become 9
    Expectations of others 9

    Please delete my first response which I posted earlier.

  8. Mary T.
    Mary T.03-15-2013

    What does this extra weight do for me?
    It gives me a problem to focus on rather than exploring a new career or trying something new. 9
    It keeps me from taking chances. 8

    If I were thin.
    I would not be able to eat what I want. 9
    I would have to exercise all the time. 5
    I would not be able to relax. 8
    I would get unwanted attention from men. 6

    What stops you from losing weight?
    It will be too hard.7
    I will have to focus on what eat and how much I exercise constantly. 9
    If I did not have a weight issue, what would I would I do/think about. 6
    I will have to give up the way food comforts me. 9

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-16-2013

      Mary- unwanted attention from men can be a HUUUGE block when it comes to weight loss. If youve had any type of sexual abuse in your past youll defintely want to work through that (using tapping of course) with a qualified practitioner. That is likely the source of the other limiting beliefs which dont seem to have a lot of evidence behind them.

      Big Hugs to you!

  9. Dorothy Inzeo
    Dorothy Inzeo03-16-2013

    I have 2 problems which I think keep me from losing weight.

    1. My husband passed away 2 years ago and I put on the weight while being caretaker because I didn’t have the energy to cook 2 separate meals like I had always done. Before I gained weight, I was just on vitamins-no meds. Now I have gained 4 new docs and lots of meds so I don’t consider that as a positive for retaining the weight. I want off of all that.

    2. If I were thin I could move around better and feel better and get rid of the docs & meds I’m on. So no advantage there.

    3. What stops me from losing weight is my bordom in the evening and also my part-time job working with food. I have to taste recipes so I can know whether they are good as a demo.

    Do you have any words of wisdom for me? I’m now in my sixth week of the Gabriel Code and have taken off 8lbs so far. I’m also using tapping to supplement
    my efforts. Thank you for your insight and caring.

    • brittwatkins
      brittwatkins03-16-2013

      Hi dorthy, there is a short and long answer to your question. First, you likely still have some unresolved feelings about your husbands death which will certainly lead to weight gain unless you tap through them. Second, I recommend you follow the naturally thin eating guidelines- you can find more about that here https://www.brittanywatkins.com/naturally-thin-eating/

      Good luck!

  10. Trish
    Trish03-21-2013

    What does this extra weight do for you?
    Examples:
    It protects me from unwanted attention. 4
    It gives me an excuse for not applying for the job I really want. 6
    No one can reject me if I reject myself. 10
    I can blame it for my not living up to my full potential. 2

    Complete this sentence
    If I were thin, I wouldn’t be able to:
    Eat ever again. 0
    Hide from the attention of men. 0
    Feel afraid anymore. 0

    What stops you from losing weight?
    I don’t want to deprive myself. 9
    It’s going to be too hard. 4
    Everyone in my family is overweight. 6
    I want to feel safe. 6

    • Trish
      Trish03-21-2013

      I know no matter what I do it will never be good enough for my grandmother and an aunt in particular. I am working on changing my eating habits and have a fitness plan written out. I have been following the fitness plan since January but adjusting my eating habits is the wild card. I always feel like I’m being judged. Nothing I do is ever good enough, there is always a “but” waiting around the corner.

      • brittwatkins
        brittwatkins03-24-2013

        Hi Trish.. Heres my frank advice: You’re grown now, they are not judging you. YOU are judging you, turn that around by tapping with the video. :-)

  11. google
    google10-07-2015

    Hello! I’ve been following your website for some time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give
    you a shout out from Houston Texas! Just wanted to mention keep up the great job!

  12. google
    google10-09-2015

    You made some decent points there. I looked on the net for more information about the issue and found most people will go along with your
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  13. SARAH TAYLOR
    SARAH TAYLOR10-11-2016

    What does this extra weight do for you?
    Examples:
    It protects me from unwanted attention. 10
    It gives me an excuse for not applying for the job I really want. 10
    No one can reject me if I reject myself. 6
    I have something to blame for my unhappiness: 8
    It gives me an excuse for not being with the partner I want or having the relationship I crave: 8

    Complete this sentence
    If I were thin, I wouldn’t be able to:
    Make excuses for why I am unhappy: 8
    Make excuses for not being able to wear the clothes I want to wear: 8
    Make excuses for the failed relationships: 7
    Hide from the attention of men. 10
    Feel afraid anymore. 8

    What stops you from losing weight?
    My Sub-conscious mind with my safety/security issues: 10
    I don’t want to deprive myself. 6
    I can’t figure out what diet will work for me: 8
    Cravings: 7
    I want to feel safe. 7

    • Brittany Watkins
      Brittany Watkins11-30-2016

      Love this, thank you for sharing your answers. Hugs to you Sarah

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