“I just want to feel better.”  That’s the most popular response I hear when I ask a new client how I can help them.  I have to say I’m a little relieved, because the number one response used to be something about the number on the scale, and the arbitrary number of pounds a person thought they had to shred from themselves in order to feel better.  

Truth is, you don’t have to lose weight to “feel better”.  That’s a story you’re telling yourself that is filled with emotional shrapnel. Not to say that someone won’t “feel better” when they are lighter: maybe they will and maybe they won’t. (People of average weight have plenty of crappy days.)  My point is it’s nice to see people stepping off the crazy train driven by the scale, and shift their focus to overall quality of life.  Weight tends to take care of itself (as in: go down) when the focus is on a bigger picture like quality of life. 

My approach to working with the client that tells me “I just want to feel better” is what you might call “holistic”.  Meaning: it’s not just about the food.  There’s so much more to you than what you eat.  Your body is the physical representation of the choices you make day after day – your habits – with nod given to some other factors such as genetics, age and hormones.  And those choices are driven not just by time and circumstance, but by your thoughts.

Those who are successful at changing their body are not the ones that succeed at a diet.  For upwards of 90% of those people, that version of success is short-lived.   Those who are successful at changing their body and keeping that change are the ones who have changed their life.  Sounds daunting, I know.  But it’s funny how small changes can have such a giant ripple effect. Funny in a “wow, that’s really cool – who woulda thought ?” kind of way.  

Most important is that these changes must be built on a mindset – a way of thinking – that supports success.  “No stinkin’ thinkin’ ” as my friend Craig would say.  (He’s accomplished quite a lot in his life, so he’s living proof of positivity.) 

You want to feel better? Do something different.  Faster still: Think something different. Little good will ever come from a crappy (“I’ll never get there”) or dishonest (“This cookie will make me feel better”) thought.  To change your body you must first change your mind.  Take back control of your thinking, and take back control of your health – all aspects of it.

To quote an old song:

“Free your mind…and the rest will follow.”