Stages of Change Model
Friday, February 08, 2013
Here are some questions to ask to try to help move you from precontemplation to contemplation to preparation to action phases. I am going to answer the questions personally for me. In my head I know I need to lose weight and I join challenges assuming I'm in the action phase but I'm realizing my lack of progress is more indicative of precontemplation or contemplation phases and I may not be committed to the action phase yet. Also, after speaking with some hypnotists at a smoking treatment training, they were talking about how change is all in the mind. Helen gave a great example of people with multiple personality disorder where one smokes and another does not, the one who does not has no physical symptoms of withdrawal even though they share the same body. Something to think about for my resistance to weight loss...
What kinds of changes have you made in the past to improve your eating (or physical activity)? I have watched calories, tried eliminating foods/groups, tried supplements, joined gyms, joined Curves, etc. I have even paid for electrical stimulation treatments and Jenny Craig. My last successful attempt at losing weight was through a weight loss study at the University.
What strategies have worked for you in the past?
Everything works for a few weeks and then I go back to my usual eating/exercise patterns. The most successful attempts were 1. Jenny Craig I lost 35 pounds and then started regaining while on the plan so after 6 months of slowly gaining I quit going. 2. Committed to a 75km bike tour, lost 45 pounds and kept them off for a few months, then got sick and had to quit exercising for 3+ months and gained about 10 pounds back. About 6 months after that I moved and had no kitchen ware for almost a month and that put us back into our old eating habits and we stopped exercising in our new location.
Some people talk about part of them wanting to change their eating patterns, and part of them not really wanting to change. Is this true for you? YES. I like to eat things that contain sugar and fat. I can't imagine giving up candy forever.
On a scale from 1-10, how ready are you to make changes in your eating patterns?
How much of you is not wanting to change? A lot. I had been in so much pain I am used to comfort eating. It is so much easier to eat out than to cook at home. I can't get anything to taste as good. And I'm a relatively picky eater.
What was your life like before you gained weight? I have always been "heavy" although I gained weight in every phase of school (I can remember being 132 pounds and a size 13/14 in Grade 8, 165 pounds and size 16-18 at Grade 12 graduation, 195 pounds and an 18/20 at University graduation and then up to 230 after my car accident, 245 after my grandma died, 260 in 2009 and 245 at surgery in 2012. All my life events are pictured with a number on the scale and a dress size.
What do you think will happen if your health behaviors don't change? I will become more unhealthy. I have sleep apnea which I cannot tolerate the machine. This past year my blood pressure has been trending up with my weight gain. I have high insulin levels and have been told if I don't change my weight and lifestyle, I will have Type 2 diabetes quite soon.
What are your hopes for the future if you are able to become healthier?
Need less medications. Be able to keep up with those around me. That I can put off my next surgery as long as possible.
How would your life be different if you lost weight or adopted a healthier lifestyle? I would be a different size (initial goal would be size 14 to shop in normal stores). I could wear my wedding rings (goal 220). I would be more active. I could fit into all furniture and not worry about how tight my hips are between the arms.
What kinds of healthy changes do you think you could make this week? I need to drink more water. Only have sugary treats once per day. I am starting PT this week which will hopefully give me a slow start into physical activity.