The Value of Support SystemsPosted: Oct 30 in Health And Wellness by Dr. Lazarus
To lose weight, you need to develop healthy habits that support your weight loss goals. Along with making daily choices in diet and exercise to support your medical weight loss efforts, there are many benefits to developing a strong support network.
Whether it’s professional support from the staff at your medical weight loss center or emotional support from family and friends, having a number of positive support systems in place on your weight loss journey will help you stay focused on your health goals and provide you with the additional encouragement you need to overcome any small setbacks your encounter.
Changes in Support Systems
When you start your medical weight loss program, you may have an initial boost of well-wishers. You’re on the path to a new beginning, and the excitement may be high.
As you start to lose weight, however, you may notice subtle changes in these networks. A previously encouraging co-worker might make a comment about your visible weight loss that doesn’t seem flattering. A close family member might suggest you have a second helping or add dessert to your tray, suggesting that you’re losing too much weight.
While you may have expected challenges in making healthy choices regarding diet and exercise, you may not have considered that making healthy choices in your personal relationships would also be part of your weight loss journey.
What to Do with Negativity from Friends and Family Members
If you notice consistent negativity from someone, remember that your journey is your own, and yours alone. Another person’s attitude, even if you care about that person, only has the ability to influence you as much as you’ll let it.
You have choices about what you allow into your life, whether it relates to the food you eat or the people you spend time with. If you’re having trouble ignoring the words or behaviors from negative influencers, try the following:
- Don’t Take it Personally: Someone else’s negativity stems from his or her own source of discomfort, anger or other personal issue. What another person says has nothing to do with you, but is rather a reflection of that person’s current state of being. Choose to let that person’s opinion be just that: an opinion. Then you are free to have your own positive opinion and stay on track.
- Ask Yourself: Is this Person Jealous or Resentful? – Sometimes our relationships develop from commonality. If you change by losing weight and your friend does not, you may find that the friendship is changed, too. It doesn’t mean that you have to let go of your friendships when you lose weight, but you may have to pursue new activities with those friends. If you always met at a restaurant, you may want to meet at a park instead.
If negativity continues, you may have to consider how to limit contact with that person. Make an effort to only surround yourself with those that are encouraging to your new healthy lifestyle. Make changes in the relationships by speaking up for what you’d like and how you’d like to be treated. Consider developing new relationships, too, like finding an exercise partner who will be more supportive in your medical weight loss journey.