Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Getting Support from Family & Friends

Friends and family play a major role in the success of your weight loss plan. Social support can help you stick to a diet and stay on track with a new exercise plan. But the people around you can have a negative impact as well. Sometimes, well-intentioned loved ones sabotage your success. When I first started this journey in 2009 my mother already knew that when she fixed her Sunday dinners that my food had to be baked. She supported me 110% from day one. Now my father on the other hand, yes I love him dearly but sometimes he would call me names such as "Fatty Pooh" or say things like "when are you gonna lose some weight". I know he did not mean any harm but during my heaviest times I was very sensitive to my weight.

Here are some tips that may help you...

Situation: Family gatherings focus mainly on food.

Solution: Try and encourage members of your family to offer low calorie options during family feasts. Menus are often planned out of habit and tradition. Remember old family food traditions can be blended with newer healthier options so that your weight-loss efforts aren't derailed when you sit down at the table.

Situation: Friends and family plan activities during your scheduled workout time.

Solution: It's easy for social pressure to get the best of you. Rather than trying to say "no" to attractive invitations, suggest an alternative plan instead. If a co-worker get's upset when you declined his/her happy hour invitation, see if they belong to your gym and invite them to one of your classes. 

Situation: You don't have friends who understand your weight-loss struggle.

Solution: Branch out!!! Everyone won't be on the same page as you but that should not make or break you. When I started I had two friends well two sister's rather (LaTavian & Tarina) and we supported one another daily. Everyone within my circle of friends at the time did not have the same struggle but they still showed support when needed.

Situation: Loved ones offer food as comfort during times of stress.

Solution: Be clear about expressing your needs to others. Your weight-loss journey may take place through periods of job stress or relationship problems. Just the process of dieting can churn up feelings of insecurity, helplessness and frustration. How many times have your girlfriends came over and went into the freezer and grabbed that ice cream and plenty of spoons for everyone???

When loved ones reach out to help by cooking for you or suggesting that maybe going out to dinner may help, be prepared with a response about a better way to help. Suggest a walk or a light jog or if you have kids take them to the playground or park. 

Who said this new journey was going to be easy?? I'm speaking from experience because I am still walking this journey and I can say that over the years I have learned a lot. I love how my blog has motivated my family and friends and now everyone is eager to stay on track. God is soooooo GOOD!!!!


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