Here’s what she did. When the needle moved up, she’d feel deflated, head straight for the pantry, where she’d commiserate with chocolate.
Conversely, when the needle dipped, she’d be all “yahooooooo”, and – you guessed it – make a bee line for the pantry to celebrate with some chocolate!!!
We’re hilarious – the crazy pants stuff we do!!!
Irrespective of what the needle said, she’d use that number on the scale as the perfect excuse to sabotage, making progress impossible.
According to that notebook that lay by her bed, three times per day for the last two years, her weight had steadily increased.
We’ve all been there, right?!
Metal, plastic + inanimate and oh so demotivating
Even though the scale is an inanimate object made of metal and plastic, it has this enormous power to ruin days, create binges and keep us very, very stuck in self-sabotage.
Most of us relate to the scale in one of two ways.
Which are you?
1. The scale addict
If you’re a scale addict, you’ve probably got a little procedure that you observe before you delicately step on its surface.
You probably undress. Maybe you go to the loo. Chances are you quickly calculate whether you’ve been “good” or “bad” over the last couple of meals. Maybe you say a silent prayer. You definitely exhale, even though you know logically that air weighs zip.
Then you take that step onto the scale (still praying).
And, depending on what the scale says, your day is either woot-woot-woot-happy, or it bombs.
You can see that scale addicts give their power to this inanimate object. They abdicate all responsibility for how they feel to the scale. If you’re a scale addict, you’re giving it the power to determine your worthiness as a person, to set the tone for your day.
On the other hand, maybe you’re a scale avoider.
2. Scale avoider
You know this is you if you go to great lengths to not step on that scale. Or, as a recent client put it, “My daily exercise is stepping up and over the scale!!!”
Some people take this avoidance to dangerous extremes. They skip doctor appointments to avoid hearing their number. Or, when being weighed at the doctors, they actually face backwards so that number remains unknown.
By avoiding that number, these good folk get to stay stuck in that unhelpful state – denial. Because, if you never know your number, you might be ignoring important clues to the state of your health.
So where do you stand? Are you addicted or an avoider?
To be fair – there is no right or wrong answer.
The key question to ask yourself is this: is it working? As in, am I moving closer to my goal?
The 3-times-per-day weigher had watched with increasing frustration as the number gradually crept higher and further away from where she wanted to be – so, definitely not working.
Freedom from the scale
Many of us, who have become entrenched in the scales-as-the-boss way of life, find it hard to ditch the scale completely. I get that.
But to these clients, I suggest that they give themselves the ‘gift of space’ from the authoritarian number on the scales, by weighing themselves a maximum of once per month.
A monthly weigh-in allows them to track their progress, without the daily ups and downs of fluid retention or time-of-the-month heaviness, which can be de-motivating.
However, the real goal is learning to listen to our bodies. What that means is learning to track our progress by other measures, e.g. how lose your knickers become, how easily your jeans button up, or how invigorated your energy levels feel.
Clients realise that they don’t need a scale to tell them they’re making progress – they can feel that bounce in their step, they can see their silhouette changing shape in the mirror, they feel in control and confident.
But, in order to create these changes, they firstly needed to give themselves space to change – away from the scale. They take back their power by back by allowing the scales to gather dust in the cupboard.
Can you weigh yourself without letting it ruin your day?
How often you weigh yourself really is up to you. You’re an adult, it’s your choice.
There’s no need to be obsessive about it.
But no need to be in the dark, either.
Just don’t make it mean more than it does. It’s just a number.
Love etc, Avril
PS: If you’d like to experience freedom from the scales and be able to weigh yourself without letting it ruin you day, hypnotherapy might just be the answer for you. Why not drop me a line so you can experience the freedom from the scale obsession…