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Archive for September, 2011

When you look in the mirror, what are you thinking? 
 
I have been working with a client who has lost a remarkable amount of weight.  She has lost over 300 lbs by gastric by-pass surgery and she came to me to talk about and resolve her issues with body image.  Her body has certainly changed quickly, now she said her mind needs to catch up to those changes.  We have been working on the importance of developing positive perceptions of self.  As we work on the issues at hand, we are realizing that as our body changes, we need to change the way we think and feel about our body too. 
 
Body image 
 
Our body image, in part, is a idea of ourselves which stems from personal experiences, personality, and various social and cultural factors. Our sense of own physical appearance is usually in relation to others or in relation to some cultural “ideal,” that shapes self image. And, our perception of our appearance can be very different from how others perceive us.

Self-image

 
Our self image is the view we have of ourselves. It’s the inner mental picture we have developed based on the influence of family, friends, acquaintances, the medical community and the media, etc . Our self-image is also developed by that internal dialog we have with ourselves.   Self-image is that mental picture we have of ourselves, which, as many of you may know, is quite resistant to change. Of course, body image is a part of self image.  Our self image brings about powerful emotions because the view we have of ourselves refers to how we may think or, more importantly, how we feel about our own perceived physical looks.  
 
Self-image is a product of cognitive development. Early on in our lives, it’s the family group that contributes to define our self-image. The family reflects back to us an image of ourselves. Then, as our lives expand out to our social world, our experiences and relationships with others such as teachers, peers, friends, and significant others and family add to how we see ourselves. These relationships reinforce what we think and feel about ourselves.  We may perceive our self-image as a truly “I’m ok” view or a distorted view of who we really are. Based on this view of self, we then develop either a positive or a negative self-image.  Distortions in our thinking and feeling of self contribute to a negative body-image.
 
The importance of developing a positive self-image
 
It is so important to work on a positive self- image as you lose weight, fat and inches on MM.  Doing so keeps you on track and enhances your life, your complete well-being. Continually working on a positive body-image contributes to a better mindset of self. For the majority of us here in Miracle-ville, I think it’s safe to say we have had difficult times in our lives when we have struggled with negative self image issues due to being over weight, weight gain, other symptoms of metabolic syndrome, PCOS etc.  Now, we have found our new lifestyle with MM, we are continually working to better ourselves, body, mind and spirit.   The importance of keeping up the positive thoughts regarding self-image is that in the realm of our emotions and feelings of self. a positive attitude and a more realistic view of self will lead to less depression, positive self worth, more satisfaction in life, less interpersonal anxiety and less generalized anxiety. The good news here is, physically, MM keeps symptoms of metabolic syndrome, or as Diane calls that Met B, in balance.  Studies have shown when our symptoms of Met B are in balance, symptoms of depression and anxiety decrease.  That said, it just makes sense to stick to plan; lose weight and emotionally feel great!!!
 
Develop a positive self image
 
It is possible to develop a more positive view of ourselves if needed.  Personally, I can tell you, I struggle with a negative self image mindset often.  As a woman who has been overweight for the majority of my adult life, I often fell into a negative feelings toward myself .  Along with my client, with all you here in Miracle-Ville, I work hard everyday to change that opinion of myself. I catch myself often with a negative thought about myself after a very nice compliment is given to me or an internalized comment I make to myself as I look in the mirror.  The difference is: I catch myself doing that and I immediately change my thought to a better, more positive thought choice  On MM, I have followed the plan, have lost weight, fit into my clothes, lost inches, have improved my labs, feel less stressed in life; however, my mind, too, needs to keep up with all these really great changes. 
How to cultivate a positive self-image         
Do a self-image inventory
Take a self-image inventory by writing down all the positive things you can think of about yourself. Also list any negative things. Doing so will help gain an awareness of your strengths, then any weaknesses may not seem so overwhelming.
 
Develop your strengths
Once you have taken the self-image inventory really work on developing your thoughts about your strengths.  Seeing the true strengths you do posses will help turn negative thoughts into more positive, powerful self talk.
 
Confront thinking distortions about body appearance
Really look into the mirror and access your thinking about yourself and your body.  Most likely you are hard on yourself, acknowledge that and change your thoughts immediately about distorted thought of self. 
 
Love yourself more
Provide kinder inner self talk for yourself, look for more peace inside, grant yourself more time for yourself and be less critical of self.  Be your own friend.  Always love yourself more by taking compliments from others.
 
Remember how far you have come
Whether you are new to MM or a long time follower, at least you have taken steps to make your life better. Living the MM lifestyle is a continual process and flow.  It is essential to live this life because Met B is a chronic condition that involves serious heath issues.  Stay on plan, keep on going with a positive attitude! 
 
I feel creating a positive body-image is a lifelong process. While losing weight on MM our body changes and we evolve into a more healthy version of our former selves.  A person’s body-image means more than just changing our body. It means changing how we think, feel and react to this new self.  Continually cultivating a positive relationship with regard to our body increases our abilities to live a more healthy fulfilling life:  body, mind and spirit.
 
Let’s talk about it
How do really feel about yourself when you look in the mirror?
  If you have dealt with negative body image issues, what have you done to overcome them?

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“I’m in it to win it”
-Geno Auriemma, Head Coach, UCONN Huskies Women’s Basketball team

How cool is this?  Today, I am talking about two of my favorite things, The University of Connecticut Women’s Basketball Program and The Metabolism Miracle Lifestyle Program!    You may be thinking, what?  How do these two topics have anything in common? 

 Here in Connecticut, the UCONN Women’s Basketball team is a big thing. Lots of fans, televised coverage of just about every game, the team travels on private charter planes to away games and they are the most winning team in NCAA Division 1 Basketball.  Men’s or Women’s game!!!  Last year the Huskies completed a 90 game winning streak that beat a 1970’s era Men’s Basketball team winning game streak. Even though these women are really talented, much of the credit for such a successful team goes to the coach, Geno Auriemma.  Last year, leading up to breaking the win record, there was a great deal of “hoopla” here in CT.  On Connecticut Public Television, they had a marathon program of 8 hours showcasing Coach Auriemma and the team.  One snowy day last winter, I watched that marathon.  One of the most interesting points they said about the coach was that he not only wants to make the women on the team great basketball players, but he wants to make them great people.  That is when I thought about The Metabolism Miracle.  MM is a program that not only makes us great dieters, but MM also makes us great people!

 

 It sure would be nice to have a motivating coach, like Geno, who pushes us harder and further to be the best we can possibly be to keep us on track, stay inspired and committed to MM and a healthy lifestyle.  For most of us; however, sticking to a lifestyle that supports our health and well-being is a personal thing that only we can do for ourselves.  Sine we don’t have a coach like Geno working with us everyday at home, we need to be our own coach! 

 

 I loved watching Coach motivate the team in practice and I was feverishly taking notes.  Some of these points I will share.  These are points Geno told the team which I thought we could put to good use when following MM.

 

 

What drives you to succeed?
Find that thing inside you that drives you to succeed.  What is the real reason to commit?  It could be for our health, especially if we have a number of those issues that go hand and hand with metabolic syndrome or to keep a family history of disease in check.  In my case what continually drives me to succeed is the fact that I feel so good on plan.   What drives you to make the commitment is a defined goal.  Perhaps you have an event in your future like a class reunion, wedding or vacation.  You have a mission to be at your best and you commit to that.  Or, perhaps you desire to look better in the mirror, wish to have clothes fit more comfortably or want to feel more confident in front of the camera. 
 
Be your own mentor
Become your own mentor who completely cares about and believes in you.  Come up with a personal saying that motivates you.  I love my personal saying, “I’m going to do this thing”  You don’t know how many times I have relied on this little saying to get me through tough times on plan.  Become your own trusted friend and guide by being 
consistent, dependable, and trustworthy, for yourself.  Always try to keep up with a positive attitude.
 
Expectations of self
Expect greatness from yourself and maintain your level of excellence to do well with MM.  Have reasonable and realistic expectations of yourself, your goals and ambition.  Try to keep them more on the positive and higher side of things.  A key to finding the right balance of high expectations of self is to challenge yourself without overextending yourself. Having the ambition to set realistic expectations is not only a great way to meet your goals, but it is a solid way to build self confidence. With each little or big success with MM, you prove to yourself that you can do this thing!!!  This kind of steady plan for yourself is a great tool for overcoming depression, stress and/or anxiety about sticking to plan and meeting your weight loss goals.
 
What is your focus?
Stay focused on your weight loss plans and get it done.  Focus on knowing the MM plan, organize your life to stay on plan and always keep your eye on your desired outcome.
 
Your leadership
Be your own leader, no one else is going to do it for you.  You will also become a role model to others who want to lose weight, get healthy and live a more enriched life on MM.  As Diane always says, “spread the word”  about MM and all the benefits you have enjoyed because you have followed MM.  Not only do you lead and inspire yourself for a better life, you also lead by example for others.
 
Reach deeper
When your resolution is not going easy, reach deeper inside yourself and make it happen.  Going deeper, going underneath our surface desires, will help to get to the real thing that drives us.  Look for the core reason we want to succeed.  Taking the time to get down to what’s really driving us, can help us to better reach our goals.  No matter what it is we think we want, the authentic self always knows what it’s after.
 
Plan
Continue to plan things out and stay organized with your healthy goals.  Pave your path.  To live the MM lifestyle gives you an excellent plan to follow so you can live a better, healthier life.
 
Forward movement
Always move forward and keep your goals rolling in a forward direction. Following the MM lifestyle does keep you in a forward direction to better health and well-being.  I cannot imagine ever going back to my old, uninformed lifestyle. 

Make the commitment

Push and inspire yourself to make that commitment, then go beyond it.  Commit to
having that faith, commitment, determination and perseverance to attain your goals.

With regard to my weight loss, I’m proud to say I’m a loser; yet, I am always in it to win it.  Are you in?

 
Let’s talk about it
In what ways have you self motivated yourself to stay on plan?

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