Your Greatest Weight Loss Challenge Solved!

What creates the greatest challenge when it comes to weight loss?

It’s a question I ask people in consults.

Want to know what they say?

Consistency.

Most people know what to do, but they don’t feel they are creating motivation consistently.

So how do you go from hitting or missing days on your meal plan to staying on track every single day (even when it’s Valentine’s Day)?

Commitment.

How is it possible that simply shifting your thoughts to being committed can help you lose weight?

Think about all the things in your life you commit to: your marriage, your kids, your job, paying your mortgage.

Do you show up to your marriage only as you feel like it?

Is your child’s call for help disregarded unless you’re in the mood?

Do you let the mortgage default because you’d rather buy on new shoes?

In all instances, you do what is necessary even when you don’t feel like it.

Why? Because you made a commitment.

Want to know what 100% commitment to weight loss transformation looks like? 100% results!

What does 100% committed to your weight loss transformation look like?

What is different for you?

Will you practice more consistency? Patience? Compassion?

What will you change today if you go all-in and are 100% committed to your goal?

Many times people think its the right program they need that will “fix them.”

While awareness of what you’re eating is important, the magic pill you’re waiting for is in feeding your mind and feeding your body.

Take some time to answer the question for yourself today: What is one thing you will change today to honor your 100% commitment to your goal?

It’s waiting for you.

You just have to decide you want it.

If this is an area you struggle with and you like what you hear, but feel you need support, then click the link to schedule your free breakthrough session with me here.

Have a great day!

Coping with Anxiety and Depression

The other day, my friend Madison asked people on Facebook about how people are coping with anxiety and depression in these insane times.

I posted a somewhat brief response, and read through the 46 comments to see if there were any common threads.

Faith, mental health support, finding activities, limiting news, baking, drinking, and connecting with others were all popular answers.

People also acknowledged they are still working through it, still struggling, still needing support.

I was really moved by the encouraging words people had for one another, so I asked Madison if she wouldn’t mind if I wrote about it, and she agreed– thank you πŸ˜‰ .

This post really got me thinking because sometimes when life happens, especially in the way it has recently, it can feel seemingly impossible to pull yourself out of the pit.

Before I dig into that, I think it’s important to acknowledge this:

Life is 50% positive emotions and 50% negative emotions.

I know this because it is reality. And as Byron Katie says, “when we argue with reality we lose, but only 100% of the time.”

People think that because I’m a life coach that I go around telling people to be happy all the time. And while there certainly is enormous value in being positive, it is misaligned for times when real hard life happens.

Think about it for a second– do you WANT to be happy when someone dies or your child gets injured? No! You want to choose, in that moment, to have a feeling like sadness or fear.

This is clearly a time when emotions are running high, and people are growing weary of quarantining, face mask wearing, social isolation, and all the things, so I won’t tell you to be happy, instead I will tell you this…

  1. Allow the ugly feelings to surface.
  • Feel sad.
  • Feel bummed.
  • Feel lonely.
  • Feel whatever is coming up for you.

It’s ok. It’s totally normal.

When we allow feelings to emerge we can process them. Many people have a fear that if they sit in boredom or sadness that they will implode. You won’t. Or that they will be uncomfortable. You will. But being uncomfortable is okay. Nothing is wrong with being uncomfortable.

Let me say this again… nothing is wrong with being uncomfortable.

I reiterate this because discomfort was a feeling I used to deeply battle, and whenever I felt any uncomfortable feelings (loneliness, frustration, sadness) I would binge eat.

I got so good at coping with discomfort by binge eating, that as soon as an uncomfortable feeling emerged, I would automatically get a gnawing sensation within me that felt incessant– like I had to do something immediately– I had to silence it! And to bury the feeling, I would stuff it down with food until I literally felt sick.

Learning to allow uncomfortable feelings to surface without trying to bury them was the key for me in breaking my binge eating habit, and creating transformation in my own life, which is why I now help other women overcome their weight struggles in this area as well.

2. Focus on what you can control

Many people want to argue about what is happening right now as a right/wrong/should/shouldn’t situation. We want to blame someone or something right now, but all of “the things” happening right now are out of control for the large percentage of the population.

Instead of fuming about what you can’t control, focus 100% on what you CAN control. Our perspective is everything right now. You can be the victim, or you can be the victor– you get to chooose.

3. Manage Your Autoplay

If you’ve been telling yourself terrible thoughts over the last several months like:

  • This is the worst time of my life!
  • Things will never get better!
  • 2020 can suck it!
  • I can’t do anything right now!

Notice how you have been feeling.

Our thoughts create our reality, so (as I mentioned before), I’m not going to tell you to be happy, but notice that when the autoplay comes up, and your thoughts start looping on a negative track, that you have to intentionally shift your focus elsewhere if you want a different result.

Our brains like to avoid pain, seek pleasure, and be efficient, and if the story you’ve been telling yourself since March is that this is the worst year ever then you will take subconscious action to ensuring it is the worst year ever for you.

Instead, you can take this opportunity to notice when your brain offers you thoughts like “this is the worst year ever” to hit pause on the autoplay, and start a new track that sounds something like:

  • I’m going to take this opportunity to call an old friend I haven’t spoken to in a long time.
  • This is a good time for me to start on that great business idea I’ve had.
  • Since I don’t have to commute to work anymore, I can start going for a walk and cook healthy food.

See what I mean?

We all get to choose how we are being in this time.

We all get to create the results we want.

So let me ask you this?

What is the reality you want to create now?

Whatever you want– it’s waiting for you.

You just have to consciously choose it– on purpose.

If you’re curious about going deeper with this work, set up a free 30 minute solution session with me, by clicking here.

Ending Your Lifelong Weight Struggle

Today I wanted to talk to something near and dear to my heart, and that is ending your lifelong weight struggle.

According to Bray, George A et al, “Overweight and obesity are worldwide problems that affect >100 million Americans or 68.5% of the adult population.”*

Obesity has been called an “epidemic,” and studies from Harvard report that there have been $190 billion spent on obesity-related illnesses and the treatment of obesity itself, but there remains to be a single, defined cure for everyone.

So what do we do?

Even if a cure-all drug or diet were released, the challenge of offering a blanket recommendation to the world is that every human is different, and what works amazingly well for one person may work terribly for someone else.

If you are like most people who have struggled with your weight for your whole life, or even a decade or two, you are likely frustrated. You may feel like these statistics support your conundrum, and you may want to blame fast food chains, availability of highly palatable foods, your metabolism, your mother, you name it.

I get it– I wanted to blame people, too! I didn’t want to think it was my fault for creating a body that felt foreign to me– I just felt like I was trying to cope with this life and this body just happened.

The truth is, we can blame a lot of people and some intense life circumstances for wherever we are, but that only serves to keep us stuck.

In order to make progress, we have to desire the freedom in transformation more than we find comfort in the story keeping us chained.

Jack Canfield’s first of his Success Principles (in the book with the same title) is to “take 100% responsibility for your life.”

So, what if we just decided that …

  • We no longer focus on who or what to blame!
  • We figure out the solution for ourselves starting now!
  • The solution is actually finding the cure for ourselves, and not waiting for someone else!
  • We are willing to take 100% responsibility in this area of life!

When I asked myself these question on my own weight loss journey it really broke my brain because it made me realize that I actually have all the answers that I need– I just needed to start testing, have some patience, and create a format for myself that would confirm I was on the right track.

This is why I am beyond excited for my Holiday Fat Loss Challenge October 26th-30th.

In these 5 days, I am going to training you specifically on how to create a plan for YOU that gets results.

Whether you’ve been struggling with your weight your whole life, a decade or two, or have noticed that since you hit 40 you keep gaining weight, I can assure you there is a solution… and it’s not what you think.

If you’d like to join the challenge, then go to my website and sign up for your free guide: How to Stop Overeating When Working From Home, and I’ll let you know as soon as the challenge opens up.

ACTION FOR TODAY: For those of you who don’t know, I am a big fan of accountability. If you are ready to start your journey today, then download the My Fitness Pal app and start tracking your food. You don’t have to hit any goals or targets, just start noticing what you’re eating. Awareness is the first step, so if you are ready to make some progress, then click here to get started.

*Bray, George A et al. β€œThe Science of Obesity Management: An Endocrine Society Scientific Statement.” Endocrine reviews vol. 39,2 (2018): 79-132. doi:10.1210/er.2017-00253

Why Am I Quaranteating and How Do I Stop?

Quarantineating?

Let’s be honest, the Quarantine Fifteen is becoming a real thing, and if you are like most people, you may have had more than one day over the past 6 months where you’ve found yourself plowing through snacks like a maniac.

No judgement.

But if you’ve found yourself in a place where you are realizing that living in your Lulu’s has led you to outgrow your work pants, then I want to share with you some insights that may help you better understand what is really going on.

But first, some woo…

Our throat chakra is the center of communication.

It’s where we speak, we feed ourselves, and express our desires.

In a usual situation if we dislike something we use our voice to acknowledge it, to meet our needs.

But right now that voice may be making requests for needs (for things like getting back to normal life, desiring clean air, walking freely without a mask, traveling wherever you want to go), but due to our current circumstances, the requests are not creating freedom.

We may be voicing our needs audibly or internally, but it’s like the universe is saying, I hear you and no.

When those beautiful words are not allowed to get out in a way that provides relief we are seeking, the emotions we experience get repressed; they go inward and start looking for an outlet within the body.

Welcome, discomfort!

We all know that a quick resolution for discomfort is eating– particularly eating highly palatable foods that taste really good.

When we eat, we dull out the vibration of emotions because our body switches focus from feeling emotions to gaining pleasure from food.

Essentially, we’ve given our body a new job: disregard emotions– focus on eating.

While eating may feel pleasurable momentarily, it does not resolve the fact that we are still silenced, so what happens?

More eating. We then train ourselves to follow the dopamine hit we get from eating rather than feeling the discomfort of energy running through our bodies.

So what do we do???

  1. Pause & Breathe: Take a deep breath- nothing has gone wrong. Your body is simply responding to a stimulus it wasn’t prepared for.
  2. Feel: In your pause you will notice that there may be something else going on– there might be some kind of static, gnawing or discomfort that you want to escape from– if you are super uncomfortable then you are right on track.
  3. Explain: Take some time in your feeling to explain to yourself what is happening. Do you have tightness in your chest or neck? Is there a pulsing or a fluttering?
  4. Identify: If this motion in your body were a feeling, what would it be? If you have a hard time identifying emotions and feelings, then use a tool like this wheel below to start identifying what that motion feels like.

Once you’ve identified your feeling, I want you to notice it, and continue to explain it to yourself, and watch the urgency behind the feeling dissolve.

I also want to assure you that it’s acceptable to feel uncomfortable feelings.

The human experience is truly 50% positive emotions and 50% negative emotions.

Feeling negative emotions or uncomfortable feelings doesn’t mean anything has gone wrong. You just have to decide how you want to show up when those feelings surface.

You may not be able to control circumstances, but you can control how you show up for them.

So the next time you notice that you are showing up for an eating event that is not aligned with your goals– mindless snacking in the pantry or eating a whole meal of whipped cream from a can while standing in front of the fridge— take the pause, and go through the steps above.

30 Days of Gratitude

Our brains love to have something to focus on. Believe it or not, our brains like to work– to have a job. For the last two months, the job our brains have been doing a lot of work processing information about a virus we don’t know a lot about. Every day there is something new, so we have been glued to live updates to learn more. This is our brains new job- learn the things, stay safe, don’t die. Got it.

While I am with you in this, I think we can do better. He’s how.

If we create more of whatever we focus on, when we spend all of our energy focusing on the pandemic, we create more thoughts and feelings about the pandemic.

Thoughts like “this is the end!;” “who is getting it next?;” “am I going to die?”

Guess what these thoughts create? FEAR! TERROR! ANXIETY!

Instead, I wanted to offer your brain a new job. For the next 30 days starting today (April 4th), join me for 30 days of Gratitude. This means that if you are in the bay area, where we are sheltering–in-place. Each day between now and the end of the order (May 3rd), you will have an opportunity to find something you are grateful for. Think of it as your Gratitude-in-Place order instead.

When we focus on gratitude, we bring more amazing feelings into the world. Feelings like LOVE! COMPASSION! GENEROSITY!

Each day, I will post one of the prompts from the Gratitude Challenge, and share with you what I am grateful for. I offer this because the more we can focus on what we are grateful for, the more gratitude we will share with the world.

I invite you to join me on this journey, and share it with your friends as well.

Let’s see if we can not only shelter-in-place, but Gratitude-In-Place as well.

What to do When Your World Feels Like it’s Spinning out of Control.

Do you ever feel like when a few things are out of your control that it’s easy to let EVERYTHING feel like it’s out of control?

My hand is raised!

As soon as I heard that a shelter-in-place warning was issued, I had a sudden urge to eat ALL OF THE FOOD.

I thought things like:

  • This is the end.
  • I have to get it now while it’s still here.
  • There may never be X again. And when I say x, of course I mean fro yo.

So what did I do when I heard that I would be confined to nowhere but my home for the next two weeks? I did what every other human in the world did, ran to my favorite shop and got a frozen yogurt the size of my head… and I ate it.

Then I got home and started thinking about how I want to be in this situation.

I realized that I may not have control over the government, or orders to stay in one place or the other, but I can sure as hell control what I put in my mouth, what I choose to focus on, how I nourish my mind, and how I use my body.

I decided that instead of freaking out and spinning on all the negative thoughts I just listed above, I would instead to decide to choose calm and balance in this time.

For so many people, times like these feel like all or nothing. We think that because we can’t have access to gyms, or because we can’t get the brand of almond milk we are used to that we may as throw the baby out with the bathwater.

But what if instead we focused on all we DO have access to:

  • Fresh air
  • Clean Water
  • YouTube videos with home workouts
  • Free meditation apps (I use insight timer)
  • A hair brush and shower (don’t let working from home bring out your funk πŸ˜‰
  • Pen and paper to write a letter to a friend or relative

What if we focused our time on what we can accomplish?

What if we started actually doing things on our to-do list?

If you are spinning, then I encourage you to stop right now and ask yourself this question, “what is 100% within my control today?”

Now write down your answers and make a list of everything you CAN do!

Changing your thinking changes everything, my friends.

If you’d like to schedule a free 30 minute solution session with me to discover how you can get back in control, click here to access my personal calendar.

Are You Either Restricting or Bingeing? Here’s Why, and How You Can Stop.

I used to feel crazy around food all the time– like something was wrong with me.

I was either dieting, white-knuckling, undereating, over-exercising, or bingeing.

I wanted to lose weight and maintain my weight loss, but …

The obsession just never stopped.

If you can relate, then I want to tell you why this is happening.

In 1944, Ancel Keys ran a study called the Minnesota Starvation Experiment.

Essentially he took 36 conscientious war objectors during WWII who were willing to starve themselves in lieu of signing up for service, and starved them for 6 months during a 12 month experiment.

The first three months the men were fed what would be considered their maintenance calories (3200 per day), then for 6 months the men were fed 50% of their maintenance calories, averaging 1600 calories a day, and then for 3 months after, they were rehabilitated with increased calories (different groups had different caloric levels for rehabilitation).

So, let me tell you about some of the symptoms the men in the study experienced…

  • Obsessive thoughts about food
  • Desire to lengthen meals/eating times so their food would last longer, add water, volume to their food to be more filling
  • Fascination with collecting recipes about food when they had never been interested in food before
  • Dream, read, talk and fantasize about food
  • Licked their plates (ummmmm– guilty).
  • Noise during mealtimes was bothersome and disturbing
  • One man reported chewing up to 40 packs of gum a day
  • One man cut off three fingers and later didn’t remember why.
  • Subjects experienced severe emotional distress and depression.
  • And the list goes on.

I’m sharing this because while there were over 400 men who volunteered for this experiment, only 36 were considered to be in well enough mental, physical and emotional state to participate.

Men who had never had issues with food, suddenly became OBSESSED!

Here’s where it gets even more interesting.

In the rehabilitation (refeeding) phase, men reported eating in excess:

  • Multiple milk shakes a day.
  • Eating caloric loads in excess of the planned 3200 per day. In some cases men ate up to 11,000 calories a day for many days of their rehabilitation.
  • 12 men stayed for an extra 8 weeks to continue to be monitored, consuming 5000 calories a day steadily.
  • Many participants reported feeling a sensation of hunger months after the rehabilitation.
  • Unsatisfied cravings even when their stomachs were filled.

The fascinating thing about this study is that the collective “we” as a culture don’t identify dieting as starvation, but look at the number of calories they were eating in a “starvation experiment” compared to what would be eaten on a diet.

I know many women who think they should eat the equivalent for their bodies (1200 calories) to lose weight, and then beat themselves up for not being able to stick to it.

In fact, we applaud people when they lose weight by starving.

“You did the HCG diet and ate 500 calories a day and lost weight (and your period)– Good for you!”

So you decide to take a day off because it’s your birthday, or you hit your goal weight, and your body is rejoicing “YAY! The famine is over!

It eats (more than you think it should) because it is feasting to both compensate for the past restriction, and it is preparing for the next famine, which you train it to do by restricting again the next day.

Poor body. It just wants to be fed, so it can keep you alive.

So, here’s where we go wrong…

We tell ourselves that something is wrong with us!!!

We blame our willpower, and suddenly we label ourselves as “bingers” or “emotional eaters.”

We think our bodies are broken for not behaving how we want them to; for not being sated on air, and keeping us youthful, glowing and skinny so everyone will love us, think we are fabulous and beautiful, while on the inside we are starving and going to punch the lady in accounting for bringing in donuts– don’t you know flour and sugar are the devil, Karen!?

I digress.

So how to we stop these extremes?

We open our eyes to the fact that there is a beautiful rainbow of options available to us.

So many of us have our blinders on that we don’t realize that if we just look to the right or the left, we can experience our lives, our bodies, and our relationship with food in a new way.

What this means in practicality is that you have to hit the pause button.

A LOT!

Your brain will love to tell you stories of the past because it’s like “NOOOOO– don’t go do that new thing because that’s a lot of work for me, and I’d rather be safe and wrapped comfortably in this warm, cozy chinchilla blanket from Z-Gallerie, so if you do something that makes me change, I’m gonna stomp and scream like a 2-year old screaming for a Snickers in the check-out stand of the supermarket, mmm-kay?”

Everytime the chatter comes up- hit pause, and ask yourself this question…

If I had balance in my life when it came to food and eating and weight and body, what would that look like?

What are things I can do today to support that change?

What are the crappy thoughts my brain offers me that would get me to turn away from this work?

What would be something empowering to say back to my brain to keep me focused on creating this balance?

After the Minnesota Starvation Experiment, the men went back to their natural body weights. Even the men who ate excessively. Even the men who ate 11,000 calories a day. They all went back to normal.

What if instead of extremes, you just went back to normal?

You don’t have to live in crazy land if you don’t want to.

Choice is yours.

How to Say Goodbye to Food Guilt Forever

If you’ve been in the habit of waking up with food guilt the day after a holiday or special event, I want to let you in on a secret of how to say goodbye to it forever.

First off, guilt is never the key to success.

Many people think it’s motivating to be upset with themselves when they mess up on their diet because then they are determined and focused.

Let me assure you– hating yourself all the way to your goal weight (or any goal, for that matter)- and feeling guilty all the way to your goal, only teaches you to feel more guilt!

Guilt is a feeling that we create with our thinking.

So if we are thinking thoughts that lead to guilt like,

  • I shouldn’t have had that
  • I always screw up my diet
  • I have no control

then we will stay stuck.

Instead, I want you to turn this around.

How I coach my clients on this is, next time you have a special event coming up, think about the thought you have right now that is leading to guilt, and use your thought as a question.

Think about yourself at the end of the day on your special event.

Instead of thinking “I shouldn’t have had that,” ask yourself, “what should I have?” or “what will I have wanted to have at the end of the day?”

Instead of thinking “I always screw up my diet” ask, “how can I be successful on my diet?” or “how can I do one thing better on my diet then I did last time?” Or even “what would it look like if I DIDN’T screw up my diet?”

Instead of saying “I have no control,” ask “what could help me feel in control?”

While these shifts seem subtle, they are powerful because they get you to start thinking differently about the situation.

And when you change your thinking here, you will open a whole new world of possibility.

Have a great day, friends.

How To Accomplish Any Goal

Seeing is believing, right?

Or so we’re told.

That’s why when we haven’t done something before we tell ourselves we can’t.

We use evidence from the past to prove our future, which is crazy!

Would you tell a baby who falls down after a few steps “guess walking isn’t in the cards for you, kid”? No! You wouldn’t.

You would get that baby back up and teach it that when you fall down you get back up.

You have faith the kid can walk. And guess what– they do!

If you’ve wanted to do a marathon would you spend your time wringing your hands that you don’t know what to do? No! You’d get a plan and get running!

What if instead of seeing is believing you tried on the phrase, believing is seeing?

Think about your goal.

Visualize it in your head.

What would the you who already has accomplished the goal tell you?

What would she be thinking about you today?

Don’t wait another minute.

That version of you is waiting.

She wants to show up.

That means you have to show up for yourself.

The wisdom is within you.

You ready?

If you want help visualizing your goal, or you want more, but you don’t know where to start, schedule a solution session with me by clicking here. Your future self IS waiting!

Hoses and Habits

Have you ever had to untangle a garden hose?

It takes work, right?

I tried to wrap up a garden hose this morning, and it didn’t want to cooperate.

I felt like it was working against me- it kinked, it was in knots, and it took a lot of work to get it to a point where I could wrap it up neatly (ish).

As I was working on this hose, it got me thinking about changing habits.

When we want to change, our brains do not cooperate.

It feels like it’s working against us.

We get into knots because we want to do something different, but it’s natural tendency is to hold the kink.

Can we change it? Yes

Can we un-kink it? Yes

Does it take work? Yes

Is it impossible? No

The truth is, that anything we want in life will require us to change the thoughts in our brain. It’s totally doable, totally possible.

It takes work.

The work is worth it.