Look around and you will see that everything in nature has its own shape and size. The joy of creation, on this beautiful planet of ours, is in its diversity. Yet we believe that there is a certain shape, size and weight that we should be. This is determined by what we see around us, how we judge ourselves against others and what the charts say we should weigh for our height.
Happiness seems to elude us as we struggle to get or keep to the image and weight we believe we should be. This struggle against nature really is insanity! I don't know about you but I fought it most of my adult life and could never win.
One thing I have learnt is that a lifetime of fighting nature, through my dieting mindset, has only succeeded in doing one thing - making me event fatter! At my largest I was over 21 stone and a massive size 30! That just goes to prove that my genetically programmed mechanism for surviving feast or famine is in great shape! You see, our bodies cannot distinguish between dieting and true starvation, so they do what they are programmed for - store fat cells ready for the next famine! The key for people who feel they want to reduce their weight and for dieters', who want to escape the 'Scarcity' Mindset, is to find your natural body's 'Set Point'.
The fact of the matter is that nature holds the ultimate key within each one of us - our body's 'Set Point' - the weight, size and shape we were born to be. Biologically and genetically programmed into our very being, just like our eye colour, height, body shape and hair colour we have no control over what our natural body's 'Set Point' is. Dependant on our age, life changes such as pregnancy, food intake and physical activity, our body naturally changes shape and adjusts this 'fat' thermostat - its set point. Sadly, the more we use a dieting mindset, or the fatter we get the less effective this weight control system becomes, that is until we allow nature to bring it back in line.
If your experience is the same as mine, or if you have put on some weight and were thinking of dieting for the first time, how about this for a new thought process: rather than fighting nature, why not work with it? Research shows that the thermostat "set point" for natural weight can shift gradually over time in response to external factors. For example, eating a high-fat diet tends to raise the set point, while regular exercise tends to lower it.
The key in restoring our original, body's 'Set Point' is therefore creating a balance of the food we eat, the exercise we take and how we think about ourselves - the more we think, the more we shrink. That is the more we switch on to positive thoughts, focus on living life to the full and see all food as a source of fuel (so that we do not restrict and then crave foods) the more we create a balance that suits our own body. Left to its own devices and given time, studies show that using normal patterns of eating - 'Conscious Eating' i.e. eating only when hungry; eating only till satisfied; eating 3 balanced meals a day; leaving food on your plate when full; eating in a balanced and flexible way without depriving ourselves, can lead to weight loss naturally and permanently.
By taking into account the reasons we reach out for food; using it as a comforter; understanding and acting on how to keep our stress levels to a minimum; knowing how to re-programme our 'Not Good Enough' beliefs and most importantly of all taking actions to love ourselves like no-one else can ever do, provides us with the keys to finding the weight we were born to be. Yet, no matter how long it takes - because experience has shown me that it is not a 'quick fix' process - it certainly is a more permanent weight loss solution that gets easier and easier the longer you work at it.
Our minds are far more powerful than we ever give them credit for. We create what we think, and where these are negative thoughts, we reach out for comfort (food) and then we are what we eat! The great thing is that we are in total control of what we think and what we eat. The choice is ours. All we have to do is switch off from dieting that makes us believe food is 'good' or 'bad', takes away our personal power, reduces our choices and feeds our negative thinking; then we are ready to make positive choices about what we think and what we eat.
For instance, plateauing whilst dieting is seen as negative and frustrating, but it is one of the natural and most useful parts of the weight loss process. In fact it should be celebrated not discounted or bemoaned. It's like a consolidation process that allows the body to make 'step changes' to consecutive, lowering of the body's 'Set Points'. When welcomed and understood, plateauing is seen as milestones that help to ensure permanent weight loss. Think of it, if you like, as a line being drawn under each level of weight you plateau at, so that weight gain above this is more difficult the longer you stay at or below that weight.
By linking our positive thinking with actions and by practicing natural patterns of eating - 'Conscious Eating', we gradually have time to focus our lives and thoughts away from food and onto living life to the full. Fear of food, guilt and shame about weight and size become a thing of the past, replaced by a love of life and food that surpasses all expectation. All it takes is for you to think in order to shrink and find your body's 'Set Point'!