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New Year's resolutions to lose weight

The new year is, naturally, a great time to reassess your goals and set new objectives for the year ahead. It comes as no surprise that weight loss is among the most common of New Year’s resolutions. After indulging in the parties and get-togethers of the festive season (which all tend to revolve around food and alcohol), many of us are left feeling uncomfortable with the results. And unfortunately, only around 8% of us are successful at sticking to our New Year’s resolutions. Thankfully, there are many ways in which weight loss counselling can help you with your New Year’s resolutions in 2017.

What are your real reasons for wanting to lose weight? Have you put on a few kilograms throughout the festive season, and you are hoping to get back into shape? Losing weight can be a healthy goal, both mentally and physically if done for the right reasons. Eating well and exercising are important for our long-term health, and can help us to avoid many health concerns such as heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers. However, feeling good in our own skin is also an important factor in our mental health: keeping healthy not only increases our self-esteem but also generates important physiological reactions in our bodies (such as the ever-coveted release of endorphins).

Unfortunately, whilst obesity is an ever-growing issue within Australia, there are also plenty of people out there who have unrealistic and unhealthy observations about their own weight. Body dysmorphia, anorexia and bulimia are all conditions which you may have heard of before now. Did you know that between 1995 and 2005, the rates of eating disorders in Australia of people aged over 15 actually doubled? Eating disorders have a strong link with anxiety, depression and suicide, and can be a contributing factor in these conditions.  You may not have a serious eating disorder, but it is important to be aware of your weight loss expectations and whether they are realistic. Weight loss counselling can help you to identify your reasons for setting your weight loss goals, and to ensure they are healthy reasons.

Whilst thinking about whether your weight loss motivations are healthy, your counsellor can also help you to set realistic goals. Aiming to lose 20kg in the next 3 months might sound like a fantastic idea to you or your personal trainer, however – is it realistic? Things to consider are:

  • Have you ever set a weight loss goal before and failed to achieve it?
  • Is a long-term, slow weight loss more achievable and more likely to be maintainable?
  • What kind of time and energy are you able to dedicate to your weight loss initiatives?
  • What kind of lifestyle changes are you willing to make?
  • What kind of lifestyle changes are you willing to maintain over the long-term?

Unfortunately, many people commit to a New Year’s resolution that is based upon fast results and unrealistic expectations; often with no idea of the steps required to reach their goals. Setting realistic goals for your weight loss is much more likely to end in success, and therefore avoid setting you up for failure, this is where weight loss counselling can be really beneficial.

We all have friends and family who want to help us reach our desired outcomes; whether they be the encouraging ‘you can do it’ types, or the sneaky ‘it’s just one block of chocolate’ types. Whether you’re seeing a personal trainer, a dietician or simply relying on your loved ones for encouragement, unfortunately not all of them are equipped with the knowledge around how to keep us accountable.

Weight loss counselling can be an invaluable tool in your journey to a healthier you. As an unbiased third party with not only your best interests at heart, but also the expertise and qualifications to support you – a counsellor will keep you accountable, without fear of judgement. Your counsellor will not only keep you honest – they can also be your number one supporter!

We all face setbacks when we set goals, and if the statistics are anything to go by, the vast majority of us will fall off the wagon, without ever getting back on. Just like with smoking, or a phobia, a counsellor can employ a range of techniques to get back on the horse once you’ve fallen off. This might even include hypnotherapy!

The important thing to remember is that we all deal with setbacks, and that none of us are perfect. The difference between a failure and a success can simply be your willingness to get back on track and not give up in the face of hurdles (or donuts).

Often, those trying to lose weight will begin their journey with bucket loads of energy and enthusiasm – and may even see dramatic results in the beginning. Unfortunately, weight loss can often plateau after the initial few weeks, and so can our determination. Whether you’re only looking to lose those few festive-season kilograms, or you’re trying to make a life-changing overhaul to your health – long-term strategies are important to maintain your results. Your counsellor can help you to create realistic strategies which will serve you best for the years to come, and ensure that your hard work continues to pay off as you adopt healthy and sustainable lifestyle changes.

If you’re considering trying to lose weight, the beginning of a new year can be the perfect time to start. Commencing professional weight loss counselling for your New Year’s resolutions could be a great step in the right direction.  Located in Mudgeeraba on the Gold Coast; Integrated Health Specialists are weight loss specialists and offer numerous weight loss programs which can help you to reach your goals this year. Get in touch today, to find out how our weight loss counselling can help you to achieve your weight loss goals in 2017!

Michelle van Namen
Author: Michelle van Namen