“Without the strength to endure the crisis, one will not see the opportunity within. It is within the process of endurance that opportunity reveals itself.” – Chin-Ning Chu, author
Food addiction is one of the most influencing factors in obesity. In fact, overeating and binge eating contributes significantly to the #1 reason why people fail weight-loss diets. Here is 3 easy steps to train your brain for diet relapse prevention.
Food is a destructive habit
When we find ourselves experiencing a lapse or relapse during our journey of changing destructive habits, behaviors, and choices about food, it is crucial to approach the situation with patience and understanding. It’s important to keep in mind that these patterns and reactions didn’t develop overnight; they were ingrained in our brains and nervous system over a long period of time. Our behaviors have formed neural pathways that have become deeply rooted.
As we embark on the path of transformation, we must acknowledge that altering these neural pathways and replacing them with more desirable alternatives requires time, effort, and perseverance. It’s not simply a matter of having a genuine intention to change; it involves a comprehensive process of rewiring our thoughts, emotions, and actions.
Weight loss diet relapse
This journey to long-term weight loss and health is a journey of patience and perseverance. A lapse, a temporary return to old habits or patterns, is a part of the voyage. The more you understand that this is a regular part of the process, the less you will beat yourself up over it and the quicker you can refocus on your goals.
Diet relapse is specifically not following your diet for more than one meal. Cheating on your diet is different than a full-blown relapse! A relapse is falling off the weight-loss wagon and giving up for a period of time due to a wide range of circumstances.
We are not striving for perfection but for progress. We will all have days when we might overeat, snack when we are not physically hungry, or not make the healthiest food choices, and that is okay. The key is to keep things in balance and train ourselves to get quickly back on track.
Instead of allowing your thoughts to spiral and internalizing feelings of failure, it is essential to remind yourself that lapses or relapses are a normal part of the process. They are expected and experienced by many individuals working towards making positive changes in their lives. By reframing your perspective, you can shift your focus from self-judgment to self-reflection and growth.
When a lapse occurs, it is an opportunity for self-assessment and introspection. Rather than dwelling on the setback, you can channel your energy into understanding the underlying factors that contributed to it. Take the time to explore and become aware of the thoughts, emotions, and triggers that led to the unwanted behavior. By developing this awareness, you empower yourself to make conscious choices and avoid falling into the same patterns in the future.
Questions to ask yourself during a diet relapse
- What was the reason for the lapse or relapse? What was I thinking and feeling at the time?
- What beliefs drove my behavior? Are these beliefs I am willing to change at this time?
- What can I tell myself or do differently next time to get a different outcome?
- Did I have a support system in place?
- Did I practice self-compassion and forgiveness?
- Did I have a balanced and sustainable approach to my diet?
- Did I have realistic expectations for my progress?
3 Simple Steps to train your brain to Avoid a diet relapse
An excellent way to test your plan in advance is to visualize the plan.
- Take a moment to close your eyes and put yourself in the same situation. Bring up all the thoughts and feelings that derailed you from your healthy eating behaviors.
- Once you have them up and running, put your plan into place. When visualizing the idea, did it feel congruent in your system, like you would do it?
- Find out ways to get around these events from occurring again. What happened in the end? Were you able to make a different choice that you felt good about?
If you can get success in your visual practice, more than likely, it will work in real life. If it does not work in the visual practice, take a few more minutes to rework the plan.
How did you put this into practice, and what was the outcome?