Speak up for yourself

A simple, effective way to sidestep sabotage (well meaning or not).

“Another slice won’t hurt, you don’t need to lose weight, but you’ve always looked like this-it’s who you are.”  Do any of these sound familiar?  If so, you’ve faced sabotage at some point along the way and it can undermine your weight loss journey.

Something to keep in mind, is that most often, sabotage is not intentional.  Often it’s the people that love you the most say or do things that could derail your weight loss and maintenance efforts.  These people don’t even realize they’re doing it.  They think they are helping you.  Many people associate food with love.

The bottom line is not to assume that friends and family are trying to harm your weight loss journey.  Take the time to explain to them how you feel sabotaged and let them know how they can better support you and your goals.  after all, they won’t be able to change their behaviors unless they know how their actions are making you feel.

An exercise from the Weight Watcher’s Weekly on this topic gives you a way to “sidestep sabotage”.

  • Describe:  Identify the sabotaging words or action with as much detail as possible.
  • Effect: Tell the person how that action makes you feel.
  • Specify: Give clear directions on what they can do (or can stop doing) to help you.
  • Consequences: Tell them how that alternate action would make you feel.
    • Give Feedback:  If the person has responded as you asked – thank them!  But don’t be discouraged if you need to follow up because they haven’t changed their ways.  It can take a second reminder to spur them to change.
    • Follow up:  The next time it feels like someone is sabotaging your weight loss efforts, tell them what they could do differently, using the DESC method above.

My mother is the biggest offender when it comes to this very subject.  She shows love with food, for as long as I can remember.  She shows it in other ways too, but LOVES to give treats and make desserts.   We’ve talked about it, but with her, I have to know that she comes from the right place.  She’s not trying to make me gain weight or go off plan.  She believes in me and wants me to be successful – actually.  But she also thinks that I have self restraint – which I don’t.

What are some of the ways you deal with this kind of sabotage?

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