Weight makes people miserable for different reasons. Those who want to be bigger fail in their attempts while those who wish to be smaller find the struggle hard. Weight issues are added to by other people’s expectations of the individual, balanced against self esteem and self perception. It is clear that obesity causes misery, though it is also clear that on the other end of the scale, those who suffer from eating disorders can be equally miserable. So why is your weight so important?
*When diets fail.
The public image which is common in the media is one of perfect shape. Products are sold based on being modeled by perfectly shaped women and men. When people buy these products which are supposed to enhance their lives and make themselves feel good about themselves, what happens is the inevitable disappointment of facing the fact that the average person doesn’t live up to expectations imposed by society.
When people perceive themselves as non conforming to what society expects, this causes undue misery and ambition to change. People who are not satisfied with who they are or how others perceive them will inevitably become miserable.
The image one gets of self when over or underweight is one that is critical. If an individual always sees themselves as imperfect, this adds fuel to the misery. Perfectly happy overweight people don’t suffer this. They have learned to live with who they are in the best manner possible, though not everyone is fortunate enough to be able to do that. After all body shape defines what an individual looks like and self image is vital to happy balance.
The only way to change the misery factor is to be able to look at the situation as it exists and see results from efforts made to change it. Burning of extra calories in the case of an inactive person who is overweight will show them that by indulging in light exercise they can in fact reduce their weight, although this has to be balanced against what is eaten. When someone hates the way they look this affects their self perception and self image. In this case, what also happens is that in their miserable state, they see depriving themselves of things they enjoy eating as a punishment, and often binge on those foods, followed by deprivation.
When diets fail.
The misery which follows unsuccessful dieting is immense. All of the effort of self deprivation which leads to no weight loss adds negativity to the whole issue. Often people who diet and then go back to normal eating habits enter a vicious circle, which can’t be broken. Weight fluctuates simply because of the changes between the diet period and the period of normal eating. The way to address this is to stop dieting, and think of food in a new way. Instead of eating unhealthy food, replacing this with healthy and tasty alternatives is one way to get out of the cycle and make life enhancing changes which will negate the misery, and feed the positive nature of the individual.
When people are miserable it is common to comfort eat. After all what do people in this situation have to lose by eating one bar of chocolate? In truth, they have a lot to lose. Periods of binging don’t help the metabolism to become stable, and all that chocolate will add to the waistline. Instead of comfort eating, eating one square of chocolate when merited by weight loss is a better way to go forward. It’s a reward rather than commiseration, and will be associated with pleasure and self satisfaction at the weight loss achieved, rather than a crutch for times when the individual is miserable.
Similarly, the person who deprives themselves of food is doing their body no favor. If a body is not given the correct nutrients, it gets tired and lethargic. Unfortunately, people with weight issues have a sense that they need to eat less or even nothing, and in an attempt to regulate their weight, tend to go through starvation periods. Of course, this fuels negativity and makes the individual miserable. The body needs sleep, good nutrition and exercise to become balanced.
The misery of people who don’t conform to society’s standards is enormous. Many go into that vicious circle unknowingly and find themselves miserable because of it. By changing lifestyle and addressing the root issues, this miserable phase can be changed to a more positive one. Feed the body what it needs without feeding the body with too much calories. The body needs a balanced diet to survive and to feel good. Once the feeling of goodness develops, an occasional treat of a moderate nature helps the feel good factor, rather than fueling the misery of failure.