Fear of the Thin

Here are some tough but highly useful comments on why you may be having a terrible time losing weight. This information has helped many of my clients make great progress on their weight loss journey.

If you are fat then you want to be that way. Well at least a part of you wants you to be fat. I know your Conscious Mind tells you to lose weight every moment of every day. But there is another part of you that truly wants and maybe even needs you to stay fat, and it has quite a bit of control over your eating behavior. That powerful, but usually hidden part is called the Unconscious Mind. Your Unconscious Mind wants you to keep the weight on and it clearly has more power over your life than you realize. And in addition to that, your Unconscious Mind has very good reasons for wanting you to stay fat.

Here are some examples of the Unconscious Mind and why it may want to keep you fat.

  • You may fear your sexual energy.
  • You may have been raped and fat protects you from men.
  • Your self-esteem may be very low and you might actually feel undeserving of weight loss.
  • Your fat may be a way of resisting the growing-up process (baby fat) because adulthood seems frightening.
  • You may believe that losing weight might require you to make other scary or painful choices and changes (divorce, change jobs, lose friends).
  • Weight loss may require you to accept more challenges or responsibilities and staying fat then becomes a form of safety.
  • You may fear being seen and therefore judged.

The point is that each of us who has significant weight we have not been able to lose is invested in staying fat and until we discover these hidden wants, needs and fears we will be stuck in fat.

This information should help you finally understand why you try so hard to lose weight and then, without any warning, find yourself eating out of control. This is what happens when your Unconscious Mind takes over. It (for the good reasons I mentioned above) is very threatened by your weight loss and will not allow you to drop too many pounds without a tremendous fight.

OK, let’s assume you agree with me so far. Now what? How do you learn to deal with an out of control Unconscious Mind? I thought you would never ask. Here are some suggestions. They really work so make sure you do at least some of them.

Finish this sentence as honestly and openly as you can (25 times) even though your responses may seem strange at first.

The reason I want to be fat is…

If you stop before you reach 25 you will probably not find useful answers. The key here is to discover two or three meaningful root causes behind your weight gain. Trust me. They are there. Every significantly weight-challenged person has them. (Write down your 25 sentences and responses in full as you do them.)

When you have done the unfinished sentence exercise, pick the two or three most powerful answers and write them down on a separate page. This information could be the real key to your long-term healthy weight loss. Take it seriously.

Make a decision to do some serious inner work on these three most significant issues. What does that mean? You can start by writing a two-page description of each issue. Take your time and be as descriptive as you can. If you have trouble writing it then find a good friend and talk about each one with that person. The task here is to begin to “flesh out” the issue and explore how it affects you.

Now it is time for a book (or a tape). If you have clearly identified your issues then you will probably find a book on the subject. For instance, if your fat protects you from sexual advances then you can find numerous books that will provide you with support and guidance for healing. This may sound strange but it actually works. There are self-help books and thousands of subjects and there is one just for you. Go take a look.

These exercises will get you started. Be sure to do them. Then you will be on your way to discovering additional guides to help you heal or manage your unconscious desires to stay fat.

Some what interesting article.. I’m not sure i buy all the self help book at the end.. but you never know…

Every so often, a little voice enters the back of my head that screams pretty loud.. and asks myself that what if question… What if I lose weight.. and everything I have blamed my weight on… is still there… and nothing changes…

I wonder if i’ve been overweight so long because Fear, more than lack of willpower or anything else is what is holding be back.

Definitely something to think about…

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Please leave a comment

  1. Laura Says:

    I have been loosing the same twenty pounds for as many years, every time everyone starts saying how good I am looking I get a sense of panic and meltdown ensues, this is a very real problem. I have known for at least seven of these twenty years that is my panic that triggers the return of the lost pounds. Before we start dieting we need to ensure that we are not setting ourselves up in this loop of failure that certainly I have been travelling in for the last twenty years. I want out of the doom cycle and I want out of it now!!!! HELP!!!!!

  2. Liz Quilty Says:

    ouch thats not so good. Why do you panic when somebody says you look good? is there a reason behind that or unsure? Sounds like you need to deal with that before you try to loose weight. In the end however, its you who lets yourself panic and re-gain the weight. And its you who makes the excuse to re-gain it.
    If you know you have this panic then perhaps you can put something in place so that when you hear or see this, make sure the house has no junk food, you are unable to binge no matter how much. I guess what I’m saying is treat yourself as that naughty child that needs discipline and there is only one person to do it. You may want to sign up the forum as others may have a similar problem and better ideas than me. I can only talk as a person on the outside looking in as I dont have this problem (I found it more motivating to be told i looked good!)

    I do wish you luck though, i hope you succeed and find your path.

  3. Pat Says:

    Laura, i am completely with you! I wish to God i could understand why that statement is a trigger. I will do so well on a diet and then it comes, someone says i look great and i find myself on a four day binge and gain 5 pounds in a week. In the back of my head i am saying help me and please make it stop, yet i can’t and i feel 10 times worse than before. This has been a lifelong struggle, if you find an answer can you pass it on. I’ll do the same for you.

  4. Romula Says:

    OMG!! This really struck a nerve with me because everytime I seem to make headway with my weightloss I always end up sabotaging my own efforts and end up weighing more than when I started! A very depressing cycle I have to say. Thanks for providing this article for us to read.

  5. Cinnamon Says:

    Laura, I use to do the exact same thing – lose 5 lbs and be told I was looking good and that would be the end of it. Now, I say thanks and just continue exercising and eating sensibly. I am about 55 kgs overweight and have finally acceted the fact that I deserve to be thin.

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