Over my 30+ years of helping women get healthy and as a Christian weight loss coach, I realize that the issues with weight loss are not so much, ‘what to eat’, ‘how much sugar you consume’, or ‘what exercises to do.’
Yes, of course, they’re all important. They ALL work for a while, but then, they don’t. Or to be franker—YOU stop working them. Can you relate?
The problem is not with the diet. Diets actually DO work; that’s why you see some people achieve amazing results.
So why doesn’t it work for me, you may be asking?
Why Don’t Diets Work for You?
2 Words … FAULTY MINDSETS
You may be bringing your same faulty mindsets with you to every new diet and program you attempt. You may be thinking, “It’s going to be painful. I’m going to feel too deprived. I’m going to have to sacrifice too much. It’s going to be too hard!” You approach this and many other areas of your life with this same attitude.
Repeated enough times, this attitude can become an identity, known as the ‘hardaholic’.
Now I wish I had made that word up, but I can’t take the credit. The word ‘hardaholic’ comes from Alan Cohen’s book, Enough Already. It describes someone who is addicted to doing things (weight loss, earning a living, parenting, thinking, relationships, trusting God) the hard way.
Take this short quiz to see if you might be a ‘hardaholic’:
- You believe that life is supposed to be a struggle.
- Success is the result of a lot of blood, sweat, and tears.
- Asking for what you want is selfish.
- Putting your needs before others is selfish.
- It’s vain to want to have a nice body.
- You have to work your *** off to be thin and healthy.
- You often feel guilty doing things for yourself.
- You find it hard to receive from others or ask for help.
So, did you answer ‘yes’ to most of these beliefs? If so, you could be a ‘hardaholic.’ You’re addicted to struggle and make things harder for yourself than they need to be.
For ‘hardaholics’, your weight loss journey (and life) will always be an uphill battle.
Sadly, this belief is so prevalent among Christian women. I see it in myself in so many areas of my life.
What the Bible Says about Struggle
Where did this notion come from? The Bible? Really? The last I read, my Bible says,
“For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28
“Her ways are pleasant ways, and all her paths are peace.” Proverbs 3:17
“Those who love Your law have great peace, And nothing causes them to stumble.” Psalm 119:165
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” 2 Corinthians 12:9
“Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16
“The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want.” Psalm 23:1
“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13
“Martha, Martha, the Lord replied, “you are worried and upset about many things. But only one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41;42
And I can probably list another 20 verses that tell us that we are not supposed to be tirelessly struggling through our day-to-day life—living overwhelmed and stressed-out.
So why all the drama? The white-knuckling through life? Why all the struggle? Why do we make everything so complicated?
I have lots of theories as to why we believe we should struggle:
- We grew up seeing our parents struggle and adopted it as our way of being, too.
- Poor teaching in the church (remember those sermons that made you feel guilt and shame for wanting more)?
- It feels Christian or noble. There’s just something about Christianity and struggle that go hand in hand.
- Some of us are hardwired that way. Remember the story of Mary and Martha?
In the Bible, the Pharisees were masterful at overcomplicating life with impossible rules and regulations that no one could follow. If we look at our lives, we’ve put the same burdens on ourselves (Matthew 11:28).
To that end, Jesus offers us the same wisdom that he offered the people of that time. As a proclaimed ‘recovering hardaholic’, this is the message I’m teaching myself and sharing with you now.
And, as a ‘recovering hardaholic’, instead of giving you a complicated answer, or a 10-step system to follow, I’m going to keep in-line with this post and make it easy.
So let’s start with one thing for you to practice right away.
One of the key learnings in the WLGW Program is to pay attention—to think about what we’re thinking about.
Notice what attitude you bring to your daily tasks. Pay attention to how complicated your life is. Are you always overwhelmed?
- What feeling(s) do you bring to the tasks you have to do?
- Is there a lot of angst and anxiety around your day?
- Are you overwhelmed by what you have to do? What ‘story’ are you telling yourself about your life? About your health journey?
- Is it hard to eat healthily?
- Is it hard to find the time to exercise?
Effective immediately, stop saying how hard things are!
Just notice how often you say it, feel it, or think it. Approach it with a sense of curiosity and intrigue. Become like a scientist learning all the unique quirks, idiosyncrasies and intricacies of your mind. Notice how your mind thinks and the conclusions it jumps to.
If you catch yourself saying something is hard, don’t judge yourself or feel bad for saying it. Instead, every time you find yourself saying that something is hard, replace it with this phrase,
“This is easy, I can do it with the Lord as my strength.”
Now, you’re going to be tempted to overcomplicate it and promise yourself to say it 10 times a day. Or you’ll begin making bumper stickers to paste everywhere—STOP IT!
Ask the Holy Spirit to lovingly show you when you’re making things harder than they need to be and TRUST that He will. That’s it simple! Take a moment and imagine a simpler, easier life. It IS possible. Trust God and trust His word that it will happen for you.
Practice this, and if you feel led, take a moment and let me know how it’s impacting you.
P.S. If you’re tired of being a ‘hardaholic’ and want to learn how to overcome your limiting mindsets and beliefs so you can finally release excess weight and live the life you were created to live, check out our Weight Loss, God’ Way Programs. You can get your feet wet with our free and simple [Video Training Course] or jump right in and trust that the Holy Spirit has led you here and become a Weight Loss, God’s Way Member.