I have found that saboteurs are all around. Since I have started this weight loss journey, so many people have reacted negatively in one way or another and I have been trying to work out what their problem(s) is (are).
On the surface they are minor comments or gestures, which seem insignificant, but when you put them all together, it adds up to a whacking great load of negativity. For the last few years, after attending a seminar by a motivational speaker, I have tried to think more positively. Instead of using negative words, such as saying “I am so tired” as you will hear lots of people saying, I say “I could be more awake” (unless it is 11pm and I really do want to sleep!). In the first sentence, the brain focuses on the word “tired” and means that you will feel more tired, whereas in the second, the brain focuses on the word “awake” and you feel more awake. If you say “I keep forgetting to do that!” then you will keep on forgetting to do that. Change it to say ” I must remember to do that” and you will remember. It really does work, believe me! Unfortunately, as a race, the Scots are not a positive bunch and they like to belittle people’s attempts at improving their situation. Here are just a few of the things I have had to contend with.
I have mentioned that the ladies I work with are obsessed, nay o.b.s.e.s.s.e.d with their weight and with food. One of them does whatever fad diet is in fashion that week, such as weird and wonderful juices, which are almost unpalatable and never sticks to it. Another is doing Slimming World, but doesn’t seem to be particularly successful. Another is not doing any classes or diets, and then beats herself up over having a Chinese takeaway at the weekend or some deep-fried food and never manages to lose anything either. It took all of them ages to actually comment on my weight loss. Now, I am not the type to go around looking for compliments, but a few other people had started to notice and it was getting pretty obvious. The SW one said to me (when the other two were not there) “so what are you doing then to lose weight?” I decided that people would be judgemental if I said I was using a diet supplement so I just told her that I had cut out all the crap from my diet and was carefully controlling portion sizes and eating fewer carbs. I wasn’t telling any lies, just not giving 100% of what I was doing. She said that it certainly seemed to be working and asked how easy I was finding it. I told her it was not just a “diet” but a whole lifestyle change and that it was actually pretty easy, although it wasn’t at the beginning. You could see the scepticism in her face that I wouldn’t keep it up. The one who doesn’t do anything was the most complimentary when she saw me walk into the office one day and told me that she hadn’t realised before how much weight I had lost and I was looking great. The faddy dieter took until June to mention to me and it was only because we were walking along in the corridor at work together (she returning from the kitchen as I emerged from the toilet as she passed – really bad timing!). Her observation was that I was losing weight on my shoulders?!?! Strange way to pay a compliment, no?
Other comments I have had:
“it’s all the walks with the dog she has been going on” (I have had my dog for 2 years!) – this was my mother
“you would be better off drinking wallpaper paste for all the good that’ll do you” – colleague who practices the 5:2 diet when I told her I was using Slimfast
“are you shrinking?” “is it intentional?” “we wondered if you were ill” – another colleague speaking on behalf of the gossips in her department
“stop losing weight now, you have lost enough” – my auntie, who thinks I have lost too much weight with still one stone to go to get to the top of my target weight range
“how are you getting on with it (the Slimfast) as I know you found it difficult? Are you used to it now?” – my mother-in-law questioning how I was finding using Slimfast. This may not come across as negative, but she had been asked by my husband not to question me about it. She then also offered to make me something to eat or a cup of tea, as that cannot be enough to keep me going until lunchtime
when are you going to stop losing weight? You have lost enough now. If you lose any more you will look ill” – a friend, who is several stones overweight and thinks that is normal
Why can’t people just be happy about the fact that I am losing weight for my own good, simply to be healthier and be around for a few more years. I am not doing it to get praise or recognition or compliments, just doing it for myself. I don’t really care what anyone else thinks, I will just keep going on down my path and keep deflecting the negativity.