This Week's Into Action Article >>
Entering the Excuse-free Zone
by Katie Jay, MSW, Certified Wellness Coach
Director, National Association for Weight Loss Surgery
As we plunge into 2009, many of us have goals for the new year. Losing
weight often ranks number one on our lists. With the media glorifying
sugary treats as much as an unrealistic body image, obesity survivors
can sometimes feel as though they are swimming upstream.
In the face of these hurdles (and others), many WLS patients need
support as they endeavor to take weight off, maintain weight, exercise,
make healthy food choices, and follow a regimen replete with water and
supplements. It is an all-encompassing lifestyle where daily choices can
negatively impact our lives long-term, if we aren't careful. Statistically,
WLS patients are more likely to succeed at their goals when they have
Ironically, many WLSers don't make time for themselves. Often, we have
good reasons (also known as excuses) for not seeking out the help we
know deep down we need in order to be successful. Here are a few of
the most common "reasons":
1. I don't do well in groups. If you think you don't do well in
groups, you may surprise yourself. I would encourage you to attend a
support group meeting if you have never tried one before. Try three
sessions before you decide if it's going to be a good fit for you.
You may find an accountability partner at a support group who can
continue to provide the support you need. Just be sure this person
is as committed to his or her WLS guidelines as you are to yours.
Also, by attending a support group you may learn about individual
classes, resources, or therapy that may be more up your alley. Online
resources are an excellent way to get support, as well.
2. I don't have time. I hear this excuse a lot. To be quite
blunt, if you had a serious illness, like cancer, wouldn't you find the
time to get your treatments? Why not conquer the disease of obesity
with all the resources available to you? Remember where you came
from and how much you don't want to go back to your old way of life,
and you may decide to make the time.
3. The support group in my area doesn't meet my needs. If
you fall into this category, try talking with your support group
leaders. You may find them willing change their program to a
ccommodate your needs. By making your needs known, you may
also learn that there are others who share your point of view.
If that doesn't work, it may be in your best interest to find another
group. Overeaters Anonymous is free and has online resources and
telephone meetings that may appeal to you. NAWLS, and other WLS
organizations, is another great option, allowing you to connect with
others online or in person at various retreats. Lastly, you may want
to consider creating your own support group.
If any of these excuses ring true for you, I urge you to keep an
open mind with regard to your WLS efforts. The objective is to
stay on track, and whichever method(s) of support works best
for you, is the method you should choose. You CAN embrace your
2009 goals with an increased and renewed optimism!
If you've been negligent in asking for help when you need it,
consider the different types of support available to you. Pick
one that speaks to you and stays within your budget. The
right support will make a world of difference for you.
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