Ah, a new year is here and with it an array of New Years resolutions. In my line of work, this is definitely the busiest season of the year. Everyone is keen to keep their resolution of finally losing those extra few pounds that have been piling on in the last year(s). If this is your goal too, let me destroy your dreams right now. 85% of people will give up on their efforts by the end of January. How sad! Another 14% will not make it through the rest of the year. Why is it so hard for most of us to fulfill our weight loss resolutions? Mainly it is because the setting of our resolutions is already flawed.
Weight is just a number, a number that is most often completely useless. Yet so many of us define our self worth through this number. I used to think being 60kg made me huge, but being 59.9kg made me feel super skinny. Seriously? A 100g difference made such a change to my mood and how I felt about myself for the day. That difference is a sip of water! I mean, I think of myself as a smart, educated woman, and yet, when it came to my weight, my brain would shut off completely, and I would try the most ridiculous things to get to that 59.9kg: a few jumping jacks before stepping on the scale to burn off some more weight (yeah, it does not work like that!!!), definitely no clothes and an empty bladder, weighing every single piece of food before it entered my body to check how much weight would be added to me (it also does not work like this!), eating only cabbage soup all day before, skipping a meal, living on caffeine instead of food (my drug of choice was green tea since I don't like coffee), exercising at night, and going to bed hungry. I mean, name it and I have probably tried it to some extent! There were times I would change my strategy daily, not willing to wait and see if there were actually any results. If the results weren't instant, I would give up (think bingeing on pizza and chocolate while watching Bridget Jone’s diary for the umpteenth time) or change strategy (piles and piles of gossipy magazines were my inspiration for this).
We all have a number we would like to get to. Often this number is completely unattainable, since it was a number we used to weigh in high school or we read that [enter your favorite celebrity here] weighs that much. And hey, if she can do it, so can we, right? You probably forget that you don't have a staff of personal chefs, fitness trainers, beauticians, and that you don't get paid to look like this. You probably have a real job you need to get to. You may have a partner, you want to spend time with, perhaps even kids, who need attention, love, and time. And you don't want to give up on the vital part of socializing with your friends. You have a whole life to live, and that life should not be revolving around your weight.
Focusing on weight is instant gratification we are all looking for, but hardly anyone is willing to put in the work for it. And even if you do, getting to a certain weight does not necessarily make you happier or healthier. It takes real, lifelong changes of your lifestyle, a complete shift in mindset to get to a point where you are happy with yourself and your body. Weight is just a number. Don’t let setting your New Year’s resolutions for 2016 make you go crazy and focus on a number so much, you forget the rest of your life.
Here is to resolutions you acually want to keep - like traveling the world or trying that new chocolate shop down the road!