As a dietitian and a former instructor of weight management classes, I sometimes would do this exercise during the first meeting for participants to see how it will feel when they lose weight. Many patients have been overweight their entire adult life and can never even remember what it was like not being overweight.
I start the exercise by saying, “Close your eyes and get a clear mental picture of how you feel right now at your current weight. How do you feel? How do you look and feel? Visualize yourself continuing to effortlessly lose weight until you reach your goal weight. Really feel and visualize how you would feel and look at your goal weight. What are you wearing? Picture what you would look like. Really feel it. What are you thinking? Who are you with? What are you doing? Just allow yourself to be in this place for awhile. How are you breathing, living in the world? How are you living your life from this space? Keep your eyes shut and just be in this place for a couple of minutes. Now open your eyes and write down on paper your experience.
Again, close your eyes and get a mental picture of how you feel right now at your current weight. Visualize yourself 20 pounds heavier. Imagine how you would look and feel. Now you are 50 pounds heavier. How do you feel? Finally, you are at your heaviest weight ever – 100 pounds overweight. How do you feel and look? What are you wearing picture what you would look like. Really feel it. What are you thinking? Who are you with? What are you doing? Just allow yourself to be in this place for awhile. How are you being, breathing, living your life from this space? Keep your eyes shut and just be in this place for a couple minutes. Now, open your eyes and write down on paper your experience.”
After the exercise, I ask the group what they experienced when they were visualizing themselves effortlessly reaching their goal weight. Most people had really similar pleasurable stories of being with people, sometimes at parties – but usually with others. They would tell me they felt alive, joy, peace, laughing, having fun, self-confidence, content, happy, relaxed, free, healthy, connected, beautiful, glowing, self-love, attractive, energetic, wonderful, comfortable and able to move around more. Then I asked them how they felt when they were gaining weight. They reported painful images of being alone, isolated, low self-confidence, wanting to hide, scared, unhappy, hopeless, depressed, upset, ashamed, powerless, miserable, embarrassed, anxious, worried, guilty, fearful, stressed, and many people had a vision of being alone on a couch watching television or being inactive.
The bariatric center at Western Reserve Hospital witnesses these life changing stories daily where people go from unhealthy and inactive to healthy and active. Dr. Chlysta and his staff can get you started living your best life. For more information call (330) 926-3443.
There are many bariatric centers. However, people tell us all the time that we are the best because of our outstanding office team, hospital care, cleanliness and staff attentiveness and an overall genuine caring attitude of everyone our patients encounter throughout the process. In addition, at our center:
- You will not be charged a “Program Fee”
- You will not be charged a “Facility Fee” for your office visits
- You will not be forced to purchase liquid supplements
- You will not be charged for parking or other incidentals
- You will be provided with free valet parking
- Your health insurance will be verified upfront and you will be kept informed of everything required
Nancy A. Azar, MS RDN LD