Overcome Denial

I’m In Denial – Now What?

This was told to me by someone I knew some years ago:

Agnes’s Story

“I know others have told me to lose weight. Even my doctor has told me to lose weight. I thought he said ‘wait, wait’ and I asked, ‘wait for what?’

‘No,’ he said, ‘The problem is W E I G H T! You need to lose weight, not wait for something to happen. Although if you do wait, it’s likely to be diabetes or a heart attack!’

So I have acknowledged that I need to lose weight, well … at least I heard my doctor say that and some of my friends too, but it’s too hard. I’ve tried before and failed. I was hungry all the time. I even went to exercise classes but nothing worked, I didn’t lose a single ounce. Now what?”

Agnes was in denial.

Overcoming Denial

The virtuous spiral can be exited at any point if you choose and denying there is a problem is a choice. You may not think it much of a choice but nevertheless, you have chosen to leave. You may argue that “nothing worked before, so it won’t work now”, or “it’s too hard”, but those, and other phrases are just your body whining because it doesn’t want to have to leave its comfort zone.

Comfort Zone – What Comfort Zone?

Your comfort zone is where you do what you have always done. It’s where very little changes, where you eat the kinds of things you have always eaten, where you refuse to learn anything new because “it won’t make any difference” and where you hover between the fire and the ice, so you’re not too hot and not too cold, even though you may not be truly comfortable there, at least you’re not frozen or burnt. It also includes searching out those “sweet treats” or “allowable sins”, so you can keep your sweet tooth in the comfort to which it has become accustomed.

But NOTHING CHANGES there, unless something is forced upon you. That something may be slowly progressive, like joint pain, creaking knees and increasing breathlessness. They may be brushed off as “Just getting old” but the something could also be a dramatic event like a heart attack or a stroke or a diagnosis of diabetes.

That is what you are choosing when you deny that change needs to be made. Your choice to do nothing does not guarantee that things will stay the same, though they may. Your choice to do nothing ALSO contains the possibility of something dramatic happening to you through your inaction.

What Next?

Agnes decided to take up a new exercise. She got herself a bike and used it for doing her shopping and travelling back and forth to her part time, local job. She lost her weight, by deciding to find something DIFFERENT to do that would give her more exercise and help her lose weight and of course by USING it. The best exercise or road bike in the world won’t help if it doesn’t get used.


The next stop on the virtuous spiral is to “Question”. You can use this to get yourself out of denial. Ask yourself WHY people (especially your doctor) might be telling you to lose weight. It’s definitely a topic few friends will bring up unless they are very close and concerned about your health. Most spouses won’t mention it either unless they are deliberately trying to upset you or get at you. Ask yourself whether your friends or partner might be deliberately trying to make you unhappy or whether they have your true interests at heart. If you think they are trying to help, then ask WHY they want you to lose weight.

Why Do I Need To Lose Weight?

Only you can answer this. Some of your answers might be:

  • I don’t have the energy to do my daily jobs, work or housework
  • I am finding it difficult to climb stairs or get breathless if I move far
  • My knees or hips or both hurt because of the extra weight being carried
  • My clothes don’t fit any more and I find it hard to get new ones that fit me
  • My doctor has told me I have high blood pressure, or I am prediabetic
  • My doctor or health adviser has said I need to lose weight
  • I can’t bend down or reach to do up my clothes at the back
  • A close relative has diabetes or has suffered a major illness because of overweight
  • I don’t like to have my photograph taken and I wince when I see ones taken without me knowing

So Now What?

If you have provided yourself with some questions, now you need to get the information to answer these, so you have taken yourself on round the virtuous spiral to the next step – get information.

Motivation For Weight Loss

https://www.motivation4success.net/motivation-for-weight-loss/Need Motivation To Lose Weight?

Do you want to lose weight? Or have your friends, your partner or your doctor told you that you could do with dropping a few pounds? What is your reaction? Do you pat your muffin tops or your belly and agree, then forget about it? Do you starve yourself for a couple of hours, or perhaps a couple of days, then gorge yourself, because you’re starving? Maybe you get a diet cookbook and find the meals are nothing like what you’re used to and give up in despair?

How To Develop Motivation

Developing motivation is a virtuous spiral (you know, the opposite of that “downward spiral” we all get into sometimes when we have dropped off the bandwagon and decide there’s no point in continuing because it’s just too hard).

It’s a spiral because you move in a circle to take your first baby step and then continue round that circle but at a higher level. Each turn of the circle is a small step, as small as you want, but it’s in the right direction.

First ACKNOWLEDGE The Problem

Did you pat your belly or muffin tops (or some other overweight or jiggly bit) or look in the mirror and agree with the speaker, or say to yourself, “I need to lose some weight”? What happened then? Did you forget about it? Maybe you sighed and said, “I’ve tried but it’s no use”, or perhaps you starved for a couple of hours, then reached for the ice cream tub? Maybe you said, “Everyone puts on a bit of weight as they get older”, or perhaps “A bit of extra weight won’t hurt”? This is called DENIAL. If you deny you have a problem, or even agree that you have a problem but do not intend doing anything about it, then you are denying there is any problem at all. At this point, you have removed yourself from the virtuous spiral and won’t be able to continue on around it.

What Does “Acknowledge” Mean?

In this case, it doesn’t just mean “Agree”. It is possible to verbally agree with your reflection or with someone else that you could do with losing a few pounds (or more) but mentally not accept the position. If at that point you forget all about it or do not recognize the situation as being serious then you are either in denial (I hear what you said, I don’t accept it but I am not going to argue) or you have recognized the problem and chosen not to do something about it (I admit that there is problem but I won’t tackle it). That is of course, your choice. If you acknowledge there is a problem but having thought about it, decided to do nothing, then you CHOSE that course of action. I have done that in the past too.



Acknowledge = Accept = Agree = Admit

Provided you acknowledge that you have a problem, either one you have recognized yourself or one that someone else has pointed out, then the next small step is to QUESTION.


You may find it difficult to agree with your eyes or with your friend, even though you have acknowledged that there MAY be a problem. With weight loss, as with so many other changes we feel we need to make (or others WANT us to make) there can be a reluctance to actually engage with the problem. We feel there is a barrier of some kind maybe protecting us from making changes. This can be so. Very often, our body or our mind does not want to accept that there is a problem because if we truly accept there is a problem, then that means we have to change. Change can be scary even if it is to protect our health because it means moving out of our comfort zone. Sometimes the only thing scarier than accepting we need to change is getting a life or health fright, like having a heart attack, a stroke or diabetes. Getting an event like that can provoke life changes because the event was so frightening that no change is as bad as that event was, but without a scare like that, our body or our mind may put up a barrier that we cannot see and that we find it hard to cross or push through, that stops us making changes and keeps us in that comfort zone, where nothing changes, so nothing gets done!

What Type Of Questions?

The sorts of questions you could ask yourself (and write down your answers, so you can look back on them) could be: Do I really need to lose weight? How do I know? Why did they say that? Who mentioned it? My doctor, a friend or relative, myself? Did I see a photograph of myself that horrified me?

Is there a particular reason I have put on weight recently? What? Have I always been heavy? Am I under stress at the minute? Is something happening in my life that means I am turning to food for comfort? Am I eating because I am bored? Is my mouth bored and just wants something to chew? Am I on medication that makes me get bigger?

What effect will excess weight have on my  health? Have I been told I am in danger of a heart attack, a stroke, going blind, getting diabetes? Are there any other problems I have been told I might get because of excess weight?

Am I having any problems with my health at present? Am I finding it hard or harder to move? Are my joints suffering from carrying extra weight? Am I puffing or panting when exercising, when I didn’t used to? Are my clothes getting too tight? Do I have to wriggle on the bed to pull up those trousers I used to fit into easily?

What am I actually eating? Junk food, too much sugar or sweet stuff?

There is a free downloadable workbook available if you want something in which to write down your answers to keep.


Now you have asked yourself questions and maybe provided some answers or thoughts on these, you need to go and find the INFORMATION you need. What you NEED will depend on your answers to the QUESTIONS in step 2. For instance, if you are not sure whether you need to lose weight, check out your BMI and see what the official guidelines are. You need to be cautious with this if you are a bodybuilder or athlete because you may appear to be overweight using the BMI guidelines when you are not. But for every other adult, the BMI is a good guide to whether you need to lose weight (or even gain it!).

If you don’t know what the health effects of excess weight are, then check these out on line. Google is your friend here. For instance, there is a video from WebMD on the effects of extra weight or there are a number of informational pages from NIH. Basically, excess weight can lead to increased blood pressure (hypertension) diabetes, which can lead to possible blindness, amputation of limbs and many other problems.

If you are not sure whether your diet includes a lot of junk food, then you could check this page on WebMD for information.

Fourth – PLAN

Now that you have acknowledged that you have a problem, questioned yourself about this and gained information that will help you decide what you need to do, it’s time to PLAN WHAT to do. You may find that the information you gathered has frightened you or at least made you very much aware that you may have a problem that needs dealing with NOW rather than later. This can be helpful in planning what to do, as long as you plan a sensible and healthy way of dealing with it, rather than jumping immediately into an unsustainable crash starvation diet, which you just as quickly crash out of!

What Sort Of Plans?

If the information gathered shows that you are carrying excess weight and you decide you want to get rid of it, then you need to plan HOW to do this. You may have been on diets previously and found them difficult to stick to. You may have concerns about feeling hungry or tired. You may not know what sort of diet would suit you and your lifestyle or you may have health problems that mean you need to be careful when changing your diet. These are all the sorts of areas you need to cover in your QUESTIONS and INFORMATION sections and now PLAN to cover as many of these as possible. Your plan may include getting more information, perhaps on a particular diet, or on the kinds of food that would suit you best. Your plan might include speaking to your medical adviser, especially if you have other health concerns. It might include getting started on a particular diet and getting in any special items you need for it. It could be planning to buy a set of food scales or a set of bathroom scales or even a diet cook book for your preferred diet.

But what ever plans you make, the next step is to take ACTION

Fifth – ACTION

There is no point getting a lot of information and planning down to the last detail if you do not TAKE ACTION.

What sort of action? It can be as small a step as you feel comfortable with. You might actually purchase those bathroom scales or food scales. You might start eating more healthily, cutting out soda, candy and cookies, or taking a large glass of hot water and lemon first thing in the morning. You might go to your library and borrow books on nutrition or a particular diet plan or you might join a slimming group. Whatever you have planned to do, TAKE THAT ACTION.

What Then?


Now it’s back to “Rinse and Repeat. Remember, this is a virtuous spiral and you have come full circle, back to the top and “ACKNOWLEDGE”, so you need to keep going round it, improving as you move through each level. What do you acknowledge this time? You may want to consider whether you bought your books or scales or diet plan or joined a slimming group. or started on your diet. What did you DO with what you learnt and planned? How did your ACTION pan out? Then move on again to QUESTION: did you find out anything particularly worrying? Do you need to take medical advice? Do you need more information? Do you need to try something different? Get more INFORMATION and PLAN your next step, then again, TAKE ACTION.

Follow these steps round this spiral, improve your information, give yourself feedback, plan your campaign and take action on the next step, motivating yourself to lose weight.


How To Stay Motivated To Lose Weight

It is common to hear success stories about people successfully losing weight within a matter of a few months, but it is also not surprising to stumble upon not so successful stories of individuals who failed at reaching their ideal weight. You may have even failed yourself in your first attempt to shed off those extra pounds. In most cases, this failure is a by-product of lack of motivation. You simply wake up one day without the inspiration and enthusiasm to hit the gym and eat healthy.

https://www.motivation4success.net/how-to-stay-motivated-to-lose-weight/But you still want to lower that number on the weighing scale, do you? If you answered yes, then keep reading and learn how to stay motivated to lose weight.

1. Set realistic goals
Have you read about a famous celebrity who managed to lose a lot of weight in just a few weeks? Don’t buy into the hype. Fad diets are very poorly constructed, often putting your health at risk due to severe food restrictions. Instead, be realistic in setting your fitness goals. Expecting to lose 30 pounds in one month will only set you up for failure. When trying to lose weight, slowly but surely is key. You can aim to get rid of 2 pounds each week. Those little numbers will add up real quick.

2. Customize your training regimen

If you hit the gym without a clue as to what you need to do, there’s a good chance you’ve enlisted the help of a trainer. But not all trainers know what they’re talking about. Don’t hesitate to ask the trainer for his or her qualifications. Also, don’t just emulate what others are doing. You have your own unique needs. Your training regimen must be aligned with your fitness goals. It must also be designed in such a way that maximizes your strengths and enhances your weaknesses, enabling you to get closer to your goals quickly and efficiently.

3. Enroll in a fitness class

Lifting weights and running on the treadmill without anyone to talk to can be very boring. Other than trying to make friends, you can also enroll in a fitness class. A group training session can be all you need to get motivated to work out. This way, you get to share your time at the gym with other people who also reach for the same goal, which is get rid of unwanted flabs and reduce weight.

4. Play sports

Exercising doesn’t always have to be in the form of lifting weights and jogging. You can engage in your favorite sports if that’s what you find fun. You can even step out of your comfort zone and do something you’ve never done like pole dancing or Zumba. This is an excellent way to add variety to your routine, making it more fun than simply doing the same things over and over.

5. Don’t starve yourself

Nutrition is an essential part of any weight loss program. Never make the mistake of skipping meals and starving yourself. A good diet plan for weight loss ensures that you get all the nutrients you need without making you feel hungry. And contrary to popular belief, you can still enjoy tasty meals even while on a diet. You just have to be extra careful with your calories.

By knowing how to stay motivated to lose weight, you can go back to your training regimen and healthy diet plan. Remember that results won’t present themselves to you without exerting effort first. Just enjoy everything you’re doing and you should be on track to get to your desired weight.