Overcoming self-doubt and fear
Last week, I said I would share with you some common roadblocks that cause people to have a tough time believing they can win at weight loss. Well, it’s that time and here we go!
Mental barrier No. 1 is self-doubt. William Shakespeare said, “Our doubts are traitors, and make us lose the good we oft might win by fearing to attempt.” Shakespeare hit the nail on the head. Over the years, I’ve witnessed, in many instances, people walking away from achieving weight loss goals because of self-doubt.
When you experience doubt, you experience feelings of anxiety and uncertainty. You see, when you are uncertain about whether or not you are going to win at weight loss, you don’t maximize your efforts and sooner or later you will throw in the towel and give up.
To avoid falling prey to doubt is to first acknowledge what it is that you doubt. To do this, simply ask yourself, “What is it that I am unsure of or concerned about?” Answering this question on a sheet of paper will prepare you to begin the process of discovering a solution.
Dealing with doubt
Valerie, age 46 and 5’2” tall, weighed 275 pounds when I met her. After over a year of coaching, Valerie made little progress in improving her body composition. Finally, one day she walked into my office and confessed to me and to herself that she had doubt that she would ever win at weight loss.
When I asked her why she had doubt, she said, “When I was 26 years of age I had a psychologist tell me that I would never find love until I lost the weight.” Valerie continued to say, “After being fat and single for over 20 years, I am afraid that if I lose the weight I will still be single and alone.” This doubt was doubled sided, as Valerie also felt it would be quite sad to learn that her appearance could be the sole reason she hadn’t found love. Basically, the rebellious side of Valerie helped her to remain overweight because she didn’t want the psychologist to be right.
Four years to the day, Valerie reshaped her body and had released over 100 pounds. During the process of winning at weight loss, she did meet someone and is now happily married. If you were to sit down and speak with Valerie, she would quickly share with you that her success was not an overnight event. It was a process.
The first step of her overcoming her self-doubt was acknowledging she had it. Secondly, she began investing time and energy into her self-worth and importance. At that point, everything else fell into place.
Frozen by fear
Self-doubt may cause you to be cautious or hesitate when faced with opportunities, but it is fear that can imprison you. Little to no progress can be made when fear is part of the equation. Simply put, your drive to win at weight loss is likely to come to a halt when fear is present.