Physiologically, weight loss comes from exercising and minding what you eat. However, there is a huge mental component to it as well. Losing weight and keeping it off is a lifestyle change and it requires some mental agility as well as tenacity.
There are at least five key mental challenges to weight loss, but they can be overcome to move you toward a happier and healthier life.
1. You Have to Want it
The first great mental challenge to weight loss is that it has to be something that you want. No one can lose the weight for you and losing weight and keeping it off takes time and dedication. It’s much easier to put in that time and dedication if losing weight and keeping it off is personally important to you.
2. Social Stigma
Another mental challenge comes, at least in part, from the social stigma that is associated with being overweight. The way that most people talk about weight gain and weight loss, it can be easy for the individual to feel like carrying extra weight makes them bad people.
When people feel like others are chastising them for things, we get defensive. This can make us not want to do things even if those things are good for us.
The best way for people to get over this mental challenge to weight loss is to have their own reason to want to lose weight. If an one has one’s own reasons it becomes easier to ignore those around them. This can make it feel like the individual is working for their own good rather than because someone else thinks that they should.
3. Breaking Bad Habits
One mental challenge comes from the fact that most people who carry extra weight do so because of habits that have made it easy for them to gain weight and hard for them to lose it.
In order to lose the weight and then keep it off, these habits need to be broken. This can be a very difficult step.
4. Building Good Habits
A closely related mental challenge comes from building new good habits. Just like weight gain often results from unhealthy habits, losing weight is best done through developing healthy habits.
Developing these new habits can be very difficult. It will take effort, dedication and commitment, as well as earnestly setting your mind to do so.
5. Facts and Figures
A final mental challenge has to do with the fact that, if you aren’t used to eating right and exercising, it can be mentally tasking. It’s much easier to not exercise and to eat poorly than it is to make careful decisions about what to eat and to exercise in a healthy way without overexerting.
The good news is that in many cases, individuals begin weight loss plans because of their health. That their health is a problem is, of course, bad news, but it also puts them in close communication with health care experts. These health care experts can help them to navigate the complicated worlds of diet and safe exercise.
Further, information has never been more prevalent and readily available. While it is good that this information is so readily available, sorting through it and absorbing it are still difficult tasks.
There are some pretty significant physical challenges to lasting weight loss. However, there are also some key mental challenges to weight loss as well. Understanding these challenges can help people struggling with their weight to understand what they can do to achieve weight loss. It can also help those who have a loved one that is trying to lose weight to understand that this is a more difficult challenge than many realize.
It can be far too easy for people of a healthy weight to take their health for granted. This taints their understanding, but it also makes things harder on individuals trying to lose weight and putting up with social stigma and a lack of understanding.