You are listening to the Weight Loss for Successful Women podcast with Shannan Christiansen, episode number 34.
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.
Hello loves. Welcome back to the show. So excited to be back with you today. And today we’re going to dive into perfectionism and how it shows up in your weight loss journey.
But as always, before we get into the show, I want to give a listener shout-out to hrielly21. She wrote, “I really enjoy these podcasts. They are really great tidbits when I need something quick to help me with my mindset. Five out of five, recommend.”
Thank you so much, hrielly21. I love this review. I love all the reviews. I appreciate all the ladies who take the time out to leave a review. And if you like this show, leave a review. I would really appreciate it.
Loves, I had the best weekend. I finally saw my grandbabies. I had not seen them in a while. I think maybe almost a month, and it was killing me. I missed them so much. They came over and we had the best day. We swam in the pool. My two granddaughters did a fashion show for me out of my own closet. It was fabulous.
So ladies, I shared this story with my Society ladies last night and it got me feeling emotional. I remember so well how I used to hate my body. I always thought about how I was not thin, how I had stretch marks, loose skin, wrinkles, brown spots. I mean, all the things.
I spent so much energy at most of my life hating it, being at war with it. Through this work, I’ve learned to love it. Truly love it. To feel strong and free in it. It amazes me. I had this moment on Saturday where I was just hanging out in my bathing suit, getting the kids ready for the pool, walking around without any thoughts about my body.
Feeling free in my bathing suit, and then loves, I caught my reflection in our patio door. And my thoughts were, “You look good.” I felt beautiful. Loves, I had this moment when I was telling this story last night with my ladies, like wow, I still can’t believe how much I’ve transformed, how much I’ve let go of all of the negative feelings about my body.
Loves, it is possible. I know because I had all the hate for my body. And now, I just don’t. I used to have this image about what it was supposed to be. I wanted my body to be perfect. But now, I have appreciation, gratitude. I can feel beauty in this body without apology.
Wanting the “perfect body” and yes, I’m doing air quotes right now, was just one way that I would sabotage my weight loss. This idea that we must be perfect is a lie that we tell ourselves. We think that the lie keeps us safe, but it doesn’t. It just keeps us stuck. It keeps us on the diet rollercoaster.
I learned this idea of perfection when I was a kid. Whenever I was a good girl, I was rewarded. When I was the best student, the best daughter. I thought I was getting more love, so I equated perfection to love. So this pattern of wanting to be perfect continued to show up for me most of my life.
I would start a diet and make promises to myself that I was going to be perfect, that I was going to eat exactly what was on the plan. I was going to exercise all five days. I was going to journal, meditate. I was going to do all the things.
But then love, I would start to slip. And then you know what happens next. Start to beat myself up. It was painful. I would tell myself that I was a failure and that I was never going to be able to do it. Then loves, I would quit.
I learned that if I could not be perfect, then I would not do it at all. This showed up in many areas of my life. I did not want to feel the shame, the uncomfortableness of mistakes, of failure. So I would do the things that were comfortable.
I learned early in my career that I was not going to be perfect, that I was going to make lots of mistakes. I learned that the only way to achieve my goals was through feeling uncomfortable. This helped me to take on projects and roles that scared me. I learned that failure, mistakes, it was all part of it.
But I was still trying to have the perfect body and lose weight perfectly. I just wanted the weight gone. I wanted to be living in this perfect body now. So I kept sabotaging my success. Because I did not want to feel uncomfortable. I did not want to feel deprivation.
I kept looking for the magical pill. You know the magical pill that we’re all looking for. The magical diet that would be easy, that I could do perfectly. But it was a lie. It doesn’t exist. I had to learn that I would have plenty of overeats during my weight loss transformation. I had to learn how to love the process of losing weight.
There is no perfect. I had to learn to love my body at 240 pounds, 220 pounds, 200 pounds, all the way down. We think that when we just lose the weight, everything will magically change. We’ll love our bodies and everything will be perfect. We have these perfectionism fantasies.
But loves, if you don’t lose weight by transforming your thoughts and beliefs, it will never be good enough. You will lose the weight, and then all the negative feelings will be there. It will never be perfect, good enough. You’ll always be chasing some number and it will keep you stuck on the diet rollercoaster.
I know loves, I was there for almost 38 years. Perfectionism is one of the lies we tell ourselves to stay safe, stay comfortable. When we think we must be perfect, we do nothing. We just stay stuck. I see this with my ladies. We have group coaching calls in The Society and I know some of them so badly want to raise their hands to be coached.
But then they have the thought, “I have to be perfect. What if I say something wrong? What if others judge me?” Then they don’t raise their hands. Then they beat themselves up for not doing it. I know this because I have found this in my own group coaching program, the one that I am the coach-ee.
I wanted to be perfect, I wanted to show my coach that I was doing the work. So I didn’t raise my hand until I did. Even though my voice was a little shaky, I knew that real transformation comes from being imperfect, from being uncomfortable.
I have so much love for my ladies in The Society. I watch them continue to show up for themselves, to be imperfect, to reach out when they need community and support. These ladies are braver than I am in so many ways. They inspire me every day.
The way to change how perfectionism is showing up in your weight loss journey is to first notice, where is it showing up? What thoughts are you having around perfection? Then decide on purpose that you will make mistakes. You will have overeats, and create a strategy for them.
I have never coached a client who has lost weight who did it perfectly. They have had plenty of overeats along the way. When I see my ladies who are the most successful, they have a plan for when they overeat or start to get off-track. They reach out to others in our Society community. They get coached. They don’t let one day of eating off plan turn into a week.
Loves, perfection, it is a lie. It’s something we learn when we were children. But it’s just not true. There is no such thing as perfect. No perfect life, body, relationship, career, children. When we can see the beauty in mistakes, failures, when we expect them, then we can begin the transformation.
We can begin to learn to love the journey we’re on today. Not someday when we get there. So today’s transformational questions are how is perfectionism showing up in your weight loss? What are you not doing right now because you do not want to feel uncomfortable? And what can you do today to start your transformation?
So good loves. Next week, we’re going to talk about the number. So join me and subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts, so I’m there every Wednesday morning. Bye for now, loves.
If you love this work and want to go deeper, take my free course. You can learn more about it at bflycoaching.com/free-course. Bye for now, loves.
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!