Motivation Articles

Stop Dieting and Start Living!

Have You Made the Change?

This doesn't mean the surface level things don't matter. Clearly, controlling how much and what you eat is vital, and caring how you look is a great motivator. The real issue here is where you fit into the picture. The key to both permanent weight loss and feeling satisfied and happy with yourself and your life is to take personal responsibility for what you can control, and let go of everything else.

Many factors that are out of your control—your genes, age, medical status and previous weight history— will affect your weight and appearance. These factors may determine how much weight you can lose, how quickly you’ll lose it, and how you’ll look and feel when you’ve gone as far as you can go. When you focus too narrowly on the numbers on the scale or what you see in the mirror, you are staking your happiness and satisfaction on things you really can’t control. That pretty much guarantees that you’ll be chronically worried, stressed, and uncomfortable—and more likely than ever to have problems with emotional eating.

And when you rely too much on external (diet) tools, techniques, and rules to determine your behavior, you are turning over  your personal responsibility to the tools and techniques. If you find yourself frequently losing motivation or feeling powerless to control your own behavior, it’s probably because you’re counting on the tools to do your part of the work for you. You’re the only one who can decide what’s right for you; only you can change your attitude and perspective to match your personal reality.

There are many articles in the Resource Center and countless conversations on the Message Boards that offer good information and practical ideas for putting yourself in charge of your own lifestyle makeover. In fact, one of the best ways you can start the transition from a diet to a lifestyle is by taking on the responsibility to identify the problems you need to work on and gather the info you need. Whether it’s coming to terms with emotional eating, improving your body image, or finding a vision of the life you want to live—you’ll find that you aren’t alone and that plenty of support and help is available.

You just need to take that first step away from the diet mentality and closer to a new and improved life(style).

Dig deeper into this topic and reach your weight loss goals with The Spark SolutionGet your copy today.
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About The Author

Dean Anderson Dean Anderson
Dean Anderson has master's degrees in human services (behavioral psychology/stress management) and liberal studies. His interest in healthy living began at the age of 50 when he confronted his own morbid obesity and health issues. He joined SparkPeople and lost 150 pounds and regained his health. Dean has earned a personal training certification from ACE and received training as a lifestyle and weight management consultant. See all of Dean's articles.

Member Comments

  • Just what I needed to hear too! Thank you! - 1/20/2015 2:04:50 PM
    this is by far the best article that i ever read about weight loss and healthy lifestyle...i never knew the differences between those I know where I went wrong and what I have to correct in my conceptions. thank you for all your articles. they’re a necessary piece to this puzzle (weight loss journey). I really appreciate your dedication and service, and I know others do too! thk :x - 1/11/2015 10:50:52 AM
    One of the most impactful articles I have read in quite a while. Thank you!! - 3/17/2014 6:59:44 AM
  • This is the best article I've read in a long, long time. The title is a bit misleading, but it got my attention, so maybe it's the best title. I am going to save this link, and put a reminder to read it once a month.
    Thank you, Mr. Anderson! - 11/28/2013 5:49:49 PM
  • Great article! Exactly what I needed to hear. - 11/28/2013 7:51:56 AM
  • Loved the article :) is there anyway I can bookmark it so I can find it easily later on when I want to come back to it? - 9/26/2013 1:53:29 PM
  • Loved the article. - 9/7/2013 1:43:27 PM
  • Nice article, definitely helped me change my perspective. NOW I will be shifting my focus from deprivation to loving and nurturing myself with healthy food. I will also be seeking the external factors that are CAUSING me to medicate with food and confront them. Being overweight is not a main root of my unhappiness, it's an effect of those issues I haven't addressed. Lord give me strength!!! * :-S - 9/6/2013 2:08:46 PM
  • Great article! Spot on! Eat to live,not live to eat! - 9/6/2013 1:26:16 PM
  • From the start of this go around with my weight, I always said that this is a lifestyle change. That was my mind set, from the beginning. I had no concept of what it really meant, except I knew that I needed to change my life and what I was doing, before I died!!!

    This article was right on time, explaining the concepts of dieting and lifestyle change. The lifestyle change, hit me right between the eyes, and it was right on target, with what I'm going through.

    Thanks you, for this article!!!

    Be blessed,

    - Nancy Jean - - 8/6/2013 9:35:09 AM
  • I really needed to read this article, it has help me see "diet" in a completely different light and yes, I want to start living not dieting! - 8/2/2013 7:06:36 PM
  • This article was very helpful for me:o) - 7/24/2013 10:10:04 AM
  • ALLECIA1986
    This is a great article, I have been on diets numerous time and lost weight but i always gain it back because these diets where never realistic. I am trying this time to make it a lifestyle change. Thank u for this article.
    - 5/28/2013 2:18:15 PM
  • BREIT67
    This is a great article. Thanks! - 3/1/2013 7:46:03 AM
  • Great Article Dean. Like it very much. God Blessings To Everyone and Have a Wonderful Week. Take Care. - 2/7/2013 5:26:06 AM

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