When it comes to any problem, there are proximate and ultimate causes. The proximate cause is the event most obviously or immediately responsible for an outcome. In contrast, the ultimate cause is the higher-level cause and often the “real” reason the problem occurred. When it comes to the problem of losing weight, we often focus on proximate causes because it’s easier or more obvious. The proximate cause of being overweight or obese is overeating. The ultimate cause, however, is the underlying thoughts that drive us to want and desire foods that don’t serve our body. During this podcast, I discuss the concept of proximate versus ultimate cause and how coaching can help dig into the underlying thoughts that drive weight gain.
With any new skill, practice is necessary. In fact, consistent practice over a long period of time is the only way to become proficient and eventually master your new skill. As a nurse, for example, it takes countless times starting an IV before you feel confident in your proficiency. For me, this process also took a personal commitment and the realization that it wouldn’t be perfect the first, second or fiftieth try. This is the same with weigh loss. Learning to eat foods that serve our bodies is a new skill that needs to be practiced before it’s perfected. During this podcast, I discuss the process of practicing and the myth of the savant. I also use my own experience with meditation as an example of how mastering a new skill takes time.
When it comes to life, we all have opinions on what should or shouldn’t happen. Poverty, disease, crime, car accidents and inconsiderate people are just a few examples of negative circumstances that impact us daily. It’s our thoughts about these situations that cause us to feel victimized or helpless. When our thoughts about a situation create feelings of helplessness or sadness, we often turn to food or other vices to buffer away negative emotions. In this podcast, I suggest our thoughts about negative circumstances are the problem and discuss how looking critically at our thoughts, challenging fixed beliefs and gaining a new perspective can help us overcome challenging situations. In addition, I discuss how the entitled thought that “bad stuff shouldn’t happen to us” is unrealistic and undermine our goals.
As we’ve discussed, thoughts drive feelings, actions and results. The fear of missing out, or FOMO, is a feeling derived from the thought that food is scarce. This scarcity mindset creates feelings of fear that causes us to make choices that don’t serve our bodies. For example, when faced with the summer barbecues or restaurant menus that temps us with goodies we didn’t plan to eat, we tell ourselves “this is the only time that food is available to us.” This scarcity mentality causes us to worry that we are missing out on a special food. Feelings of fear typically drive actions that are not consistent with long term goals. During this podcast, I discuss the scarcity mentality and offer alternative approaches to dealing with expected and unexpected situations.
Like a road trip, the weight loss journey may be fraught with distractions, obstacles and roadblocks. Some obstacles, such as summer barbecues and work lunches, can be anticipated and strategies developed in advance. Other obstacles may be unforeseen and more difficult to overcome. In either case, getting back on track when obstacles occur is often the difference between reaching your destination and getting stuck along the way. During this podcast, I use the road trip analogy to demonstrate how weight loss is a journey and, like a journey, you can’t let expected or unexpected obstacles prevent you from reaching your destination.
Are you the truest, most authentic version of yourself? As a young woman, I envisioned helping people to live better, healthier lives. This altruistic ideal was the reason I entered the healthcare industry. It didn’t take long to realize the healthcare industry was more accurately a system of “disease care” not health care. Consequently, first as a nurse and then a doctor, most of my career was spent treating the symptoms of disease not inspiring patients to change for the better. My career path wasn’t in alignment with my truest, most authentic self – the person I’d always imagined. Concurrently, my own struggles with weight and threat of disease directly conflicted with my personal ideals and authentic self. Life coaching was the catalyst that helped me recognize this nagging inner voice driving me to change. While this inner work is hard, I’ve learned to live in alignment with my truest, most authentic self. In this podcast, I share inspiration from the Tao Te Ching, an ancient Chinese text discussed in the book “Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life” by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer. This incredibly moving book provides inspiration to be the most authentic version of yourself. During my podcast, I share a verse that spoke to me and echoes the ideals that life coaching helped me to realize and fulfill.
Do you sometimes want to eat unchecked? Totally without restrictions? Recently, I found myself in a situation where I had allowed my primitive brain to make my decisions. After some serious thought work, I uncovered a thought that splurging and allowing my primitive brain to run the show was “fun.” The result, however, was feeling sick and not living in integrity with my higher personal goals. Not so much fun. As I have discussed in other podcasts, the primitive brain attempts to seek pleasure, avoid discomfort and expend the least amount of energy possible. Consequently, decisions made from the primitive brain typically don’t serve our higher goals. In this podcast, I discuss my personal experience at the movies and explain how a planned splurge went wrong.
In this episode, which is the last in the four-part podcast series on the thought model, I continue the discussion on intentional thoughts and how to produce deliberate results. Thoughts drive emotions, actions and inevitably your results. Evaluating thoughts critically, challenging fixed false beliefs and being intentional with new thoughts are key components of getting results, including permanent weight loss. This episode begins with an overview of the thought model and provides several examples of how to apply the thought model to various situations, including work and food choices. Finally, I examine the process of finding new, intentional thoughts with the goal of producing better results.
In this episode, which is the third in the four-part podcast series on the thought model, I discuss finding intentional thoughts that produce better and deliberate results. Permanent weight loss requires understanding thoughts. Thoughts drive emotions, actions and inevitably your results. Evaluating thoughts critically, challenging fixed false beliefs and being intentional with new thoughts are key components of getting results, including permanent weight loss. I present the concept of turning the thought model backwards and starting with the desired result, then action, emotion, and finally your deliberate thought.
Permanent weight loss requires understanding thoughts. Thoughts drive emotions, actions and inevitably your results. Evaluating thoughts critically, challenging fixed false beliefs and being intentional with new thoughts are key components of getting results, including permanent weight loss. In this four-part podcast series, I discuss the thought model in-depth. During this episode I focus on thought downloads, which is also called journaling. However, I call it “taking out the trash” because you are critically evaluating thoughts and getting rid of those thoughts that don’t serve you. In the next episodes I’ll discuss (1) being intentional with your thoughts, and (2) planning for the future.