And by weight, I mean the heft of all consequences of unhealthy habits, not merely excess pounds.
It’s no news to most of us that dieting doesn’t work—but neither do countless other risky plans and products marketed to weight loss-seekers. Even if they did safely and effectively promote weight control, the results would last if you failed to address the underlying causes of those added pounds. The solution isn’t focusing on weight loss, but life gain.
Here’s how you do it:
If you focus on added pounds, you’ll likely gain stress, hunger pangs and, eventually, more pounds. Focus instead on what you want—which generally goes for beyond aesthetics.
Rather than strive for slimness, live largely. Get so busy cultivating a life you cherish that caring for yourself and body become a near given, and fixating on your body shape or size, a waste of precious time.
When you respect and listen to your body rather than fight or shun it, your lifestyle habits improve and your weight gravitates to a healthy place. When it does, you won’t likely know the number—because why should you care? Weight control and loads of other benefits are byproducts of a healthy, happy life.
I sat down to write a post on healthy alternatives to the risky goals and practices folks implement near New Year’s, then realized I’ve already written about them all pretty extensively. So instead, I created a simple image highlighting the most important tips to share on social media. People have been so beautifully responsive (You’re rockstars. Thanks!), I decided to share it here as well, along with related resources.
In all my work in the wellness field, I’ve encountered little as effective as these steps. I’ve witnessed their magic in hundreds of lives, from those with anorexia to morbid obesity. I’ve seen them improve people’s moods, energy, digestion, skin health and relationships, end to yo-yo dieting and lower cholesterol, high blood pressure and physical pain. I’m not sure I’d be around today without them.
I wish I could bottle them up and make them snappy and appealing to the masses—not for financial profit, but because they’d better the whole darn world. The good news? They can brighten your world, free of charge, any time you want. They may take time to flourish, but the benefits will start manifesting immediately. All it takes is a willing heart.
If you’d like to give any number of them a go, here are some related resources that may help you on your journey:
Written by me:
Love the Skin You’re In: Putting the Order Back in Disordered Eating via LIVESTRONG.com
Nourish Your Body, Nurture Yourself via LIVESTRONG.com
#GirlBoner Wellness: 5 Ways Dieting Zaps Libido via my blog
Dodging Diets via my blog
Toxic Cleanse: Debunking Detox Diet Myths via DAME Magazine
Why Fitness Plans Derail: 4 Common Pitfalls to Avoid via LIVESTRONG.com
The Benefits of Intuitive Eating and How to Get Started via LIVESTRONG.com
The Fulfillment Diet: Pursuing Passion First, via Bartlett’s Integrated Health Journal
Written/created by others:
How to Meditate: A Practical Guide to Making Friends with Your Mind, by Pema Chödrön – a super practical, easy read!
Simply Being: Guided Meditation for Relaxation and Presence, an awesome meditation app
KM Huber’s blog: a lush resource for mindfulness and zen living
The Power of Rest: Why Sleep Alone is Not Enough, by Matthew Edlund – the best book I’ve found on simple ways to rest more (great for monkey-minded insomniacs ;))
The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron No, this isn’t a health book—but it can help promote wellness. I recommend particularly for folks dealing with severe body dissatisfaction, binge eating or compulsive dieting. It’s also invaluable for creatives who feel stifled.
10 Steps to Positive Body Image, via the National Eating Disorders Association
Wishing you and yours a safe, healthy and joyful New Year. ♥