“The Beck Diet Solution” Day 4: Give Yourself Credit
I love today’s task! I’m very into the “person-centered” theory of counseling, part of which includes highlighting the positive in people. That could involve giving yourself credit for all your accomplishments, big or small. I discuss this without the weight-loss perspective in my self-care post here.
I never thought about “giving yourself credit” as an effective weight loss strategy, but Beck makes a lot of sense in this chapter (as usual). She argues that it’s important to celebrate your small victories, in order to encourage yourself to stick with the diet;
“Once I build my confidence by giving myself credit, dieting will be easier.”
Beck argue addresses a common pitfall of dieters: not wanting to give yourself credit until you’ve reached your goal. However, she thinks you deserve the most credit today; the weight loss phase is more difficult than the maintenance phase, so you’re really doing the hardest work right now. Weight loss is a long journey–months or sometimes years–and that is too long to beat yourself up over every little mistake!
You must walk past the break room several times during the workday, which means trying to ignore the tempting box of doughnuts on the counter. After resisting all day, you give in and have half a doughnut around 3 pm.
Old, negative thinking: “I’m so weak. I can’t believe I couldn’t control myself. The whole diet is ruined for today, I might as well just eat whatever I want tonight and start again tomorrow.”
New, “giving yourself credit” thinking: “I wish I hadn’t eaten that. But I was able to last until 3 pm before eating the doughnut–before, I would’ve eaten one as soon as they were set out. I also only ate half a doughnut, instead of a full one like last time. I deserve credit because I made progress in those two areas. I just need to forgo dessert tonight, to make up for the extra calories. My diet is not ruined.”
See the difference? You need to cheer yourself on as you try to lose weight! Encouraging yourself builds confidence, so you can feel stronger next time you’re faced with temptation.