Visualization Techniques for Weight Loss

Think Your Way to a New You

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Many conditions can improve if the sufferer uses visualization and weight loss is definitely one of them.  Here’s how visualization works: you create a vision in your mind of how you want your body to look and subconsciously you will starting acting in a way that allows that vision to happen.  You will have a more positive attitude about your body, accept your diet and/or fitness routine and, lastly, visualization will help you reach your weight loss goals more easily.

Visualization as a technique to help people successfully change has become more acceptable recently.  Psychologists don’t know exactly how visualization works but it does emphasize an organic relationship between the mind and body.  If you truly want something, your brain will help you achieve it, provided it is something that can happen and is within your control.  Visualization makes us picture ourselves the way we would like to be when we create pictures of our healthier and happier selves.  Without putting the power of our brain to work on our weight loss goals, we can often sabotage ourselves psychologically and keep ourselves from healthy weight loss success.

Often overweight people believe they cannot lose weight.  They may say it about themselves or hear others say it and so they consciously believe it.  Others have this subconscious belief that they cannot lose weight although it will influence their behavior as much as it does for those who believe this consciously.  Someone who believes that she can’t lose weight will always be battling her own body and her own mind’s negative belief.  And how can anyone successfully lose weight in this situation?  Especially if your mind is telling you that your body is a lost cause, that it makes no difference to try to lose weight because it’s impossible for you to do so.  Visualization is a powerful tool in helping the mind overcome negative beliefs and impulses.

If negativity invades your thoughts or if you’re getting it from the people around you regarding your diet, reject it by visualizing yourself at your desired weight as often as you can.  Visualizing yourself at your target weight will knock out those negative scripts and their influence like nothing else.

Unfortunately, you can’t just visualize away the negativity once or twice and expect it to work.  You need to practice visualization every day; if possible, morning and evening.  Take a few minute when you’re in a quiet place and put that image in your mind of your body at its ideal weight.  Some find this easy to do; others find it hard.  Those who struggle with visualizing can help themselves along by looking at a past photo of themselves at their ideal weight.  Or you can cut out a picture of a person in a magazine to visualize your ideal body weight.  Just be careful to remove the person’s face in order to make sure your visualizing your own success and not someone else’s.

Another visualization strategy is to start visualizing from the inside.  Close your eyes and concentrate on one part of your body.  As an example, you can concentrate on your left thigh.  In your mind’s eye, imagine it slowly becoming thinner.  Then move to your other thigh and systematically visualize all of your body parts in the same way.  It might help to start this process at the top of your head or with your feet first.  Whatever feels comfortable.

As you go throughout your day (in addition to your visualization sessions in the morning and at night) think of yourself as already at your ideal weight.  Create your own affirmations and repeat them to yourself in the present tense as often as you can (example: “I am glad I am at my healthy body weight”, not “I will lose weight today.”)  The great thing about visualizing is that you can enjoy the process of seeing your improved self.  As you do this systematically, you will find that you’re not tempted by unhealthy foods and that working out is something you like.  Visualize the new you—the only thing you have to lose is your own negative thoughts about yourself.