How many times have you lost and regained weight? Have you ever lost only part of the desired weight and never reached your goal? Self-sabotage is usually the reason. An ancient philosopher described it best when he said that the mind of man is like a ship on which the crew have mutinied and locked the Captain in the brig. Each crewmember takes over the helm at whim, and the ships goes round and round, onto the rocks, into the shallows, never reaching its destination.
Get to Know Your Crew
The first step for success is to learn to recognize your own inner sabotaging crew and become aware of the situations in which you let them take over. These are the four key saboteurs whose actions will keep you from achieving permanent weight loss or maintenance.
This is the voice inside you that urges you to eat against your better judgment. It is the master rationalizer. How often has your Indulger murmured: You’ll feel better if you eat something, or Just a little bit won't hurt? That voice also says: Go ahead, you deserve it, or Don’t let it go to waste. The Indulger is usually at the core of every broken diet. It sounds like a loving voice, but it is killing you with love in the form of food. Is that really love?
This saboteur sometimes appears in the guise of the Perfectionist, Fault Finder or Controller. When your willpower falters the vindictive Critic snarls: You blew it! In the Critic's eyes you are never good enough, thin enough, smart enough, or perfect enough. The Critic is the supreme put-down artist. Do you have a Critic that tells you not to get rid of your fat clothes because you know you always gain it back? The Critic is unloving and unforgiving.
The Perfectionist Critic sets goals that are impossible and unrealistic. Diane shared that her Perfectionist demanded that she lose 10 pounds by Friday! No matter how much weight you lose the Perfectionist will not be satisfied. Diane said that her unloving Critic was like the Duchess from Alice In Wonderland who shouts "Off with her head!"
This saboteur eats to spite the inner Critic or other people in your life that act like critics. When the Critic is looking over your shoulder as you scan the contents of the refrigerator and telling you what you shouldn't eat, the Rebel pops up and says, I'll show you! and eats it all. The Rebel also says: I don't care, I want it! You can't make me, and What the Hell! as it gorges. This Rebel can be an exasperating character.
Miriam reported that after her husband made a disparaging remark about her weight, she angrily marched out to the kitchen and downed an entire package of chocolate chip cookies. The only trouble was that she hated chocolate chip cookies! Her Rebel was saying, “You think I’m fat. You ain't seen nothin' yet.” The Rebel is a very angry part of your personality. Many people who are afraid to express their anger will eat at the person they would like to yell at.