By Brad Lamm, Thanks to The Healer’s Journal
I’m sure at one time or another you’ve found yourself reaching for a bag of chips or a pint of ice cream without realizing what you’re doing. Sometimes it’s for no reason other than sheer boredom. Other times you’re on auto-pilot. You grab some cookies when really you’re looking for a way to kill time, or snag a box of this or that to eat instead of thinking about what’s eating you.
Other times, it may be to soothe yourself or detour around uncomfortable feelings. To some degree, we all do this.
If you’re gaining weight because of it, or you can’t stop eating certain foods, or eating is taking the place of building closer connections with the people in your life, it’s a sign that something is wrong.
After many years helping thousands of people change, and after combating and healing my own up-and-down relationship with food and eating, I have come to a vital truth around food and weight—a truth that will help you, as it helped me, finally weigh what you want and find peace with food.
Here is that truth: When you change your relationship with yourself—when you truly begin to love yourself—you will change your relationship with food, too. You will break the cycles of overeating, and you will be more likely to stay at your healthy weight.
I used to regret the time I wasted being unhappy with my body and being self-destructive. Now I use my history and path to teach and help others. I don’t want you to waste another second in the quest to find happiness and peace with yourself. I want to help you let go of a self-destructive, restrictive relationship with food. It may feel like I’m helping you pry it loose from your grip, but you’ll make peace with food and with your body.
You can learn to invite into your life the experience of eating wholesome foods, and doing so in a meditative, loving way with your friends and family. You’ll discover how to heal yourself emotionally and spiritually and bring that power and connective soothing force to others, as a parent does to a child.
STEP 1: Live the Love-Centered Diet
For many people, food is like a drug, which could explain why many of us just can’t stop bingeing, particularly on junk food. The Love-Centered Diet simplifies your eating and gives your body a 30-day break from refined flour, sugar, and junk food.
STEP 2: Start a Moving Meditation
Learn how to go beyond the “sweat mentality” of exercise and experience physical activity in a whole new way: as a “moving meditation.” This can involve any form of activity. It teaches you to reflect on your inside self.
STEP 3: Develop a Daily Practice
What would it take for you to feel less stressed and more in control of your food and well-being all day long? Just 10 minutes in the morning with a “daily practice,” to set the tone you want for your day.
STEP 4: Appreciate Your Body
Research suggests that learning to accept and, yes, even to love your body just the way it is can actually help you lose weight. Reverse those negative mind-sets for good—and reap the slimming benefits.
STEP 5: Love Yourself Thin
Loving yourself is the most overlooked factor in weight management. If you’re stuck in a self-loathing mind-set, then it’s very hard to do something good for yourself.
STEP 6: Maintain Loving Connections
People who lose weight—and keep it off—generally have help. In one recent study, those who participated in a structured weight-loss program that included weekly group support lost more weight and did a better job of keeping it off for two years than did people who lacked group support.
STEP 7: Eliminate Excuses
We all tell ourselves stories that explain—or make excuses for—how we’ve come to be the way we are. The trick is to create a new narrative, one that reflects your goals, and why and how you can effect the change you’re aiming for.
STEP 8: Examine Your Battleground Beliefs
Your battleground beliefs are the thoughts running through your head 24/7. These opinions from childhood are often subconscious. Examine your outlook and form the positive beliefs you’d like to have.
STEP 9: Connect with Higher Source Thinking
How we approach life and spirituality contributes to our overall well-being. People who tap into their spiritual side have a positive self-image, a sense of purpose in life, and better health than those who don’t, according to a growing body of research.
STEP 10: Pay It Forward
Everyone is looking for the magical answer on how to keep weight off once you’ve lost it. I believe the ultimate answer is to pay it forward by helping others. When you bring a little fresh air into someone’s life, expect some of that refreshing breeze to blow back your way.
Brad Lamm is the Founder and President of Intervention Specialists, a family education and crisis intervention group that helps family and friends get loved ones to accept help and begin lasting change. From the foundation of his work with various intervention models, Brad developed the Invitation2Change method of intervention. Brad believes that an identified loved one’s support group is uniquely poised to offer support, accountability and structure from a beginning point of love and honesty–no matter how broken-down, discouraged or troubled they feel. Highly motivated and with long-term sobriety himself, Brad’s approach is no-nonsense and understandable, blending hope with the dynamic nature of his distinctly hands-on work.