You are listening to the Weight Loss for Successful Women podcast with Shannan Christiansen, episode number 44. Today is a very special episode and the audio quality is a little different than our other episodes, but you are going to want to hear what these three beautiful ladies have to share with you.
Welcome to Weight Loss for Successful Women, a podcast for women who are ready to break the diet cycle and end their struggle with weight for good. Here’s your host, Fortune 100 executive and Certified Life Coach, Shannan Christiansen.
Shannan: Hello loves. Welcome back to the show. Today we have a very special show today. This is the first time ever that I’m going to have guests on the show. I have invited three amazing ladies to come and join us.
These ladies are members of The Transform Society and they’re also mentors for BFLY. They are just the most beautiful ladies and I have so much love for them. Ladies, you are in for a treat. These ladies are going to share their weight loss journeys with you and tell you what has helped them the most.
So, let me introduce the three ladies. So, we have Dawn Richards, Sharon Spawn, and Tammie Molnar. So first, we’re going to talk to Dawn and Dawn, hello.
Dawn: Hi Shannan.
Shannan: Hello, we’re so happy that you’re here with us today. So Dawn, tell us, if you could introduce yourself and just give a little background on your weight loss journey.
Dawn: So I’m Dawn and I am from Northern Utah. I am a mom and I’m also a math teacher at our local high school, and I’ve spent all day today writing a math book, so it’s disgusting. So, I’ve been with Shannan for almost a year now. Super glad I found her. But I’ve always had problems, I’ve always kind of been on the heavier side my whole life.
And as a kid, I went to Weight Watchers. Before I was 12, I was in Weight Watchers three times, and I also was in a hospital program to help kids lose weight. And they gave you two dollars every time you lost a pound.
Shannan: Oh no.
Dawn: When I got a little bit older, I got into athletics and I lost quite a bit of weight, and I was quite slender probably until I was 25. And then I started having babies and I did pretty good. And then my third child, when he was born, he passed away. And I started struggling with my weight again.
I gained lots of weight and I had spurts where I would take it off and put it on and take it off and put it on. I went to Weight Watchers three more times. I did the Atkins diet, many fad diets. I lost and gained hundreds of pounds.
Shannan: I tell you, I think all the ladies can really understand that. And I know about your son and I just want to say again, I know what a loss that was to you. I want to hug you right now. I have so much love for you and sorry that that happened to you.
You know Dawn, I want to ask you a question about being on the diet roller coaster. And when you first found me, where were you at at that moment?
Dawn: I was not dieting anymore. I actually had completely sworn off dieting. I wasn’t necessarily in an overeating state all the time eating, but I was just like, you know what, I’m not going to diet anymore. I’m just going to stop when I’m full and if I want a treat, I want a treat, but I was not dieting anymore. There was no more dieting.
Shannan: And what do you think made you decide that you were just done with it?
Dawn: I had just thought, you know what, this is just how I am. And this is what I am and I’m fine with it. And I really wasn’t, that wasn’t the truth, and so I think I just didn’t – I didn’t know how. I’d got to that point where I just, I didn’t know how.
Shannan: Yeah. And so, you took a chance on BFLY and me and what made you decide that you were intrigued or even interested in coming into The Society?
Dawn: One thing is that when you talk, you talk with such passion and love. And you’re vulnerable, and you will throw it all out there, and I love that part. I love that you’ve been there. I love that you’ll tell us how much you love us and that you want us to succeed. And you have such passion for each one of our journeys. You remember the little things about us like that I love fruit snacks.
You remember those things, and just having that – you’re just so genuine about weight loss. You truly want us to succeed. You truly want us to do our work and get off the diet roller coaster.
Shannan: And thank you so much Dawn, I mean, that was so sweet. What are really kind of the one or two key things that you’ve learned in this process over the last almost year that has really helped you?
Dawn: I’ve learned to watch my thoughts. My thoughts create my emotions, and the emotions cause actions. So that means that if my thought is “you’re fat,” I’m sad, and I don’t want to feel that, and so I go and eat. And knowing that process just there has really helped me and knowing that my brain doesn’t always tell the truth. It lies to me sometimes.
Shannan: Yeah. Isn’t that the most – when I was learning this work myself, I have to say that it was one of the biggest a-ha moments I had was when I realized that just because I have a thought doesn’t make it true. I remember learning that like, what? Back up. Hold on one second.
Because it was just so – I don’t know, I had always believed all the things that went through my head. And I was my worst critic. And so many times I was lying to myself. And so for sure, I understand that.
Dawn: It’s made a huge difference.
Shannan: Anything else?
Dawn: Other things that I’ve learned, some other things too is that writing my things down and being in my – not my primitive brain but my brain that does the work – what’s that brain called?
Shannan: Prefrontal, yeah.
Dawn: Yes, in my prefrontal brain. That’s where you are so powerful is in your prefrontal brain. If you can do the planning ahead of time and you can be in that part of your brain, it’s great. And there’s all these tools out there to help me. I don’t have to be on a diet plan. That’s the best part. And I’m learning to love my body, learning to love who I am. That’s the most incredible thing. I told my husband last night, I’m like, I think I have the coolest body. He’s like, you feeling okay?
Shannan: Isn’t it cool when you start looking at your body with love? It’s the best.
Dawn: And feeding it with love. That’s love to my body. That’s what – that’s love.
Shannan: I love that so much, Dawn. So we have a lot of ladies that are listening right now and they’re where you were almost a year ago, and what advice would you give one of our loves out there who are just starting on her weight loss transformation?
Dawn: The one thing I would do is I would say try everything. Do every worksheet, give your full effort, and when you get stuck, say something. We’re all here to help you. Say I’m stuck, I don’t get this, I don’t know what’s going on. Be vulnerable and realize that we are all in the same place with you, and you’re going to – so many things are going to change. It’s life-changing.
Like that means your whole life. I actually have a relationship with my sister and my mom. This is incredible. I never thought in a million years that I would have a relationship with them and that I could say I love them and that you’re worth your work. You are worth it.
Shannan: Dawn, I love that so much. So, for all you ladies who are listening who are not in The Transform Society, we kind of have a little bit of an inside joke and I’ll tell you what it is. And the joke is I bring you in saying let’s lose some weight, and then you actually learn to love yourself, you change your relationships, and the weight loss is just kind of secondary.
And not that you don’t lose weight and not that, but you realize that you actually can have this beautiful, amazing life that you create and you can become your best self. And then once you start loving yourself, then the weight just starts coming off. How much weight have you lost, Dawn?
Dawn: As of this morning, I’ve lost 35.5 pounds. That 0.5 is important.
Shannan: Yes, it is.
Dawn: Every little bit counts.
Shannan: Every little bit counts. I love it Dawn.
Dawn: You know, it’s been work, but it’s been such worthwhile work. I’ve never cared this much about myself in my whole life. I’ve never put this much effort into myself and I just can’t believe I didn’t start a long time ago. But I needed to get to that point where I decided that I was worth looking on the inside.
Shannan: I love that so much, Dawn. I love Dawn and Dawn is a mentor. And you know, all three of these ladies are mentors and they are there to help. I know my listeners are listening, and I know how it is to feel hopeless. And you know, why I wanted to bring these three ladies on is so that you can see that there is hope and that you can get off the diet roller coaster and it’s possible. Thank you so much Dawn.
Dawn: Thank you.
Shannan: Okay, we are going to move right on to Sharon. Hello Sharon.
Sharon: Hi Shannan. How are you?
Shannan: Good. How are you doing love?
Shannan: Tell us a little bit, tell all the ladies out there listening, tell us a little bit about yourself, Sharon.
Sharon: Okay. I’m Sharon Spawn. I’m from Levittown, Pennsylvania. I’m a former pre-school teacher and a mom of three amazing boys.
Shannan: I know. You have twins, right?
Sharon: Yes. Twin boys. They’re all amazing.
Shannan: I know. So Sharon, tell me just kind of your weight loss journey and I would say your weight journey. Tell us a little bit about that.
Sharon: I always was the chunky kid. From the time I was born, I was a chunky baby and all the way through high school I was on the diet roller coaster, up and down. I tried every fad diet there was for 40 years. And I would gain some, lose some, and then I’d try whatever came out next. And you just get to a point where you didn’t know what to do.
Shannan: Yeah, I know all the ladies listening, we’ve all been there, right? I was with you. I was almost 38 years on the diet roller coaster of just gaining weight, losing weight, trying everything out there. No, for sure.
Sharon: I felt like a yo-yo. I bounced up and down, up and down, up and down the weight scale. And I’m shocked that I didn’t break it.
Shannan: You just do start to feel, again, back to that word, hopeless. You do start to feel like am I ever going to figure this out? Am I ever going to find something? And there’s just so much stuff out there and you’re trying all these different things, and most of it are these magical food plans or exercise plans.
And I think one of the things that with all of you ladies, that you’re learning, is that the magic has always been inside of you. It’s all inside of your brain and it’s not in this kind of outside environment. And so tell me, I remember you because I remember your very first email to me. And you kind of had told me your story and so tell me when you very first found me, what intrigued you about BFLY Coaching and why did you think this was it or why you were even ready?
Sharon: Actually, well, I went to your first – I joined, I went to one of your Lives. And I’m listening and I was like, wow, I can do this. There isn’t a magic pill, there’s no magic, there’s no food plan, I’m not restricted, I can make my own choices. And so I felt that this is for me. This is – I’m going to give it a shot. Give me one more chance and see how it goes.
Shannan: Yeah. And tell us, you joined The Society, Sharon was the first one actually who signed up. She was – Sharon has come to, I would say – I don’t think you’ve missed but one thing ever. I mean, you have shown up. So tell us Sharon, what are kind of the one or two things that really you use and that have really changed everything for you?
Sharon: Well, what really changed for me is doing the realistic plan and reflection work. Planning your meals out really helps. You don’t have to stand there with the cupboard door open or the refrigerator door open saying, what am I eating today?
And when you planned it out and plan ahead, it takes the drama out of it. And when I sit down and I do my reflection work in the morning and I do it before I go to bed at night and I go through my thoughts and it helps me discover more about myself. Why I was an overeater, why things didn’t work.
Shannan: Yeah. That’s so good, Sharon. Again, we always think that it’s outside of us. And when we start exploring how we’re thinking, how it’s making us feel, why we’re overeating, and then we get these tools that help us. So, things like allowing urges and using the butterfly jar and different techniques throughout the program that really help us, right?
And I was thinking about you and thinking about community and support. Tell the ladies your experience when it comes to all the other ladies that are in The Transform Society.
Sharon: Oh, these beautiful ladies, they are so loving and supportive. They listen. They will help you if you have any sort of problem, you’re struggling, they’re always out there to help you. They’ve been where you are. Everybody’s working together so you’re not alone. They become your best friends. They’re your family. And that is so amazing. It just warms my heart. These women, I just love them to pieces. I could hug them all.
Shannan: I know, right? I love them too. We do have a lot of love happen in The Society, The Transform Society for sure. So okay, tell all the ladies how much weight you lost, Sharon.
Sharon: I’m at 91 pounds.
Shannan: Holy moly, 91 pounds. That is amazing. I remember when you – Sharon sent me her before picture way back when, when she first started emailing me. And boy, the thing I’ve seen her after pictures, and you know what I see the most Sharon is just – it’s not even the weight loss. It’s the way that you smile. It’s the way that you light up. And tell us all how you’re feeling right now.
Sharon: Oh, I’m so over the moon. I love myself. I love every inch of me with the batwing arms to the stretch marks to everything. Even though I got a little bit of a belly, I love that too. It’s who I am. I embrace it with all the love.
Shannan: I love that so much. So, we have a lot of ladies listening so what advice would you give one of the ladies who are just starting out in her weight loss transformation?
Sharon: What I would tell them is be patient with yourself. Believe in yourself because you are worth it. And every pound you lose is just a stepping stone to a success and also to whatever goals you could reach. Anything is possible.
Shannan: I love that. It’s one of my favorite things to say. I write that a lot in my reflection work. Anything is possible. It does give you such a feeling of almost like your superpower, right?
Sharon: Oh yes. I feel like I’m Superwoman.
Shannan: I love it. Sharon, so much love for you. Thank you so much. So, I am so excited because we are going to now go to Tammie Molnar. Tammie, how are you?
Tammie: I’m good, how are you Shannan?
Shannan: So good. I am so happy that you are here and talking to all of the ladies today. So tell us a little bit about yourself.
Tammie: Well, I’m Tammie. I’m from Ohio. I have two beautiful kids and it’s been almost a year now since I found BFLY.
Shannan: Love it. And tell us just a little bit about kind of your weight journey.
Tammie: Well, I’ve been overweight most of my adult life, starting at about age 21, I think. I’ve slowly gained weight over the years and especially with each of my two pregnancies, especially my second one. And I’ve just never been able to get the weight off.
I’ve tried all the magic pills, potions, fad diets, pretty much everything except Weight Watchers and weight loss surgery. And I just haven’t been able to get below that 200 mark in years, and it’s just been so frustrating. And I ended up giving up on myself.
Shannan: And tell me, how did it feel giving up on yourself and what was happening with you at the time?
Tammie: I just felt like I wasn’t worth the effort anymore and I didn’t like myself so I figured no one else would like me, so I didn’t even try.
Shannan: I mean, we love you. We think you’re amazing. So you decided to join BFLY and The Society, and what made you decide that this was the program that you were going to try?
Tammie: I wasn’t even really looking for a program at the time, because like I said, I had given up on myself. I was probably at the lowest point I ever was in my life. And I was just on Facebook and I think an ad popped up for you or something about BFLY popped up anyway.
And I clicked on it out of curiosity and was scrolling through your Facebook page, looking at some of your old videos. And then I went to your first Facebook Live, and I’ve been hooked ever since.
Shannan: I love that.
Tammie: And I knew this was the program for me.
Shannan: Yeah. And when you were thinking back to back then, what was one of the things that you really thought was different?
Tammie: You taught that everything revolved around our own thoughts, and that just kind of changed everything for me. You didn’t have an exercise plan or a food plan that we had to follow and that we had to restrict. It was more we had to change our own mindset and become a watcher of our own thoughts.
Shannan: It’s so good, Tammie. And okay, we’re waiting, tell us how much you’ve lost and tell us a little bit about how you think of yourself today.
Tammie: So far, I’ve lost 25 pounds. And while sometimes I do get a little frustrated that it’s not happening faster, I remind myself that I didn’t gain it overnight, so I’m not going to lose it overnight. And sometimes I’ll call myself the turtle that even though it might be a slow progress, I’m still going to win this race. And I’m so much more confident in myself. I love myself again. A year ago, I could not say that.
Shannan: Yeah. How does that feel, Tammie? To love yourself again.
Tammie: Oh, it feels wonderful. Before, I was always doubting anything. Not even about my weight, but whether it was relationships or with my job, or just something kind of mundane in general. Now I just have so much more confidence about anything.
Shannan: Yeah. Tell all the listeners what you did this past weekend for the first time ever.
Tammie: I went jet skiing.
Shannan: Love it.
Tammie: Which I didn’t drive it, but still, I had never been on one before.
Shannan: I love every second because you’re gaining – all three of you ladies, I’ve watched you just honestly transform in front of my eyes. And not just the weight, but how you’re confident, how you feel about yourselves, how you are now leading in The Society and you’re leading study halls and you are helping all the other ladies. And boy, that is just amazing. And Tammie, is there anything else you would want to – what’s your favorite tool that I teach? I know it’s hard to pick.
Tammie: Probably the realistic plan. Because I don’t have to think about what I’m going to eat. Even if I know I’m going somewhere and I don’t know what they’re serving, I can still just say I’m going to have a protein, a carb, a veggie. And if I decide I want a dessert, I’ll put a dessert down on the plan.
I won’t have any mind drama around eating the brownie if I want a brownie. And it just makes it so much easier and if I see something that’s not on my plan, I’ll just go, oh, that’s not on my plan, I can put that on for next time.
Shannan: Yeah, isn’t that the best part? I love the realistic plan. I mean, still to this day, I make a realistic plan every day. And I just love the freedom in it and you had said this. You said the freedom from the obsession, right? Because on diets, I was always thinking about food, thinking about my next meal, thinking about should I eat this, should I not eat this.
And it was just all of this mind chatter. And for me too, one of my favorite tools is the realistic plan. And I love that I get to just make a plan and then if I want a brownie or a cupcake or whatever it is, I just put it on my plan. And you said this, there’s no drama. I can eat it if I want it, and when I’m full I stop. And it is such freedom.
And I think for all of us, we’ve been on the diet roller coaster and it always felt like chains. We were just always either binging and totally overeating, or on this very restrictive. And I think what I’ve learned that’s helped me in my weight loss and what I’m teaching all of you is that there is a way to eat that you can always eat that way.
And it doesn’t mean cutting out a food group or cutting out the favorite things that you like. And you get to decide what you want to eat, which I think is just so powerful. So Tammie, what advice would you give a new lady starting out in her weight loss transformation?
Tammie: The main thing I would say is to give yourself grace and to just keep going and stay committed to yourself. You won’t regret it. You’ll have plenty of mistakes and fails, but that’s okay. It’s even great. It’s how you keep learning. I’ve made tons of mistakes and had lots of fails, but I’ve learned from each one and it’s made me a better person for it.
Shannan: I love that.
Tammie: I was just going to say, and I don’t regret any of it. And your program is worth every penny I’ve spent on it.
Shannan: Tammie, that’s so sweet. You know Tammie, I love the word grace. It’s one of my favorite words because I think when I was on the diet roller coaster, and I think when ladies first come to me, we’re in this cycle of just beating ourselves up nonstop, all the time. Sometimes where we don’t even recognize that we’re doing it all the time.
And part of learning this process is really learning how to have grace with yourself and how to have challenges and failures and still then take the next best action, and there’s no throwing it all to the wind. And it’s another one of my favorite parts. I love the word grace. I’m so happy that you feel the same way.
Well ladies, it has been truly a gift to all of the ladies. I am just so thankful that you came on the podcast today. And you know, if you want to see Dawn, Tammie, and Sharon, they are in The Transform Society. But they also hang out in our Weight Loss for Successful Women Facebook group, so you can see them there.
If you comment, these ladies are going to support you and they can help you for sure. So, thank you ladies so much. I have so much love for you. And all the listeners out there, I’ll see you next week. Bye loves.
Do you want to join Sharon, Dawn, and Tammie? The Transform Society is open until August 1st. If you’re ready to take this work to a whole new level, join Transform Society. You can join at BFLYCoaching.com/join. Can’t wait to see you in there, love. Bye love.
Thank you for listening to this episode of Weight Loss for Successful Women. If you love what you heard today and want to learn more, come over to bflycoaching.com. That’s B – F – L – Y coaching dot com. See you next week!