If we can build a habit of pausing as we communicate with ourselves, we can take back control of our thought patterns, feelings and actions. Breathwork and awareness are two incredibly useful tools for learning to press pause on our thoughts and consider whether they’re helping us build the healthy, fulfilling life that we deserve.
In today’s episode, you’ll learn about me and my backstory, including some of my struggles with the diet rollercoaster. I’ll tell you what led me to finally seek out a new way to lose weight and keep it off. I will also share an important concept with you about perfectionism, and we’ll wrap things up with two transformational questions.
You are listening to the Weight Loss for Successful Women podcast with Shannan Christiansen, episode number one.
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. I am so excited. This has just been a dream of mine to start this podcast and help women lose weight and learn to love their bodies. And I’m just so grateful that you are listening today.
So I’m going to talk about an important concept when it comes to getting off the diet roller coaster for good. And then I’m going to leave you with something that you can start doing today.
But first, to kick things off, I want to tell you a little about myself and what this podcast is about, and what it’s not about. And throughout the coming episodes, I will continue to share the process and tools that I have learned to finally get off the diet roller coaster and to love my body.
Yes, you heard me correctly. Love my body. So let’s get started with just a little about me and my journey. So I am an executive senior vice president at a Fortune 100 company and I’m also a life coach. I have my MBA from Arizona State University. Go Sun Devils, and I’ve been coaching in my professional career for over 25 years.
I’ve been trained on coaching and even co-developed a coaching program for a major corporation. But I wanted to become more directly involved in helping women and helping them specifically lose weight. So I became certified as a life and weight coach in 2018.
I co-founded BFLY Coaching with my husband and our son works for us too. The BFLY family. I’m married with a son. I have two bonus kids and a beautiful daughter-in-law. And four grandbabies. And yes, I love them to pieces. You will hear about them often.
I actually want to eat their faces. I just love them so much. All of that sounds so amazing, right? But my journey does not start with all of that. I struggled with my weight for almost 38 years. I’ve been in your shoes and I know that hopeless feeling.
I have weighed as much as 315 pounds and the last time I lost weight for friends and I started to diet. This led to many, many, many years of either being on or off a diet. I have tried everything from pills and potions, shakes, surgery, programs, support groups, and let’s not forget saran wrap.
I mean, I know you guys feel me on this. Saran wrap. I have counted calories, points, and fat grams. And it all led me to losing and gaining weight 100 times. I honestly thought something was wrong with me. I thought I just needed to find the right diet plan and get more willpower.
In my early 40s, I went to Weight Watchers and this was about my 20th attempt at it, but I gained weight every week. I went for, I want to say two to three weeks, and every weigh in I was just gaining weight. And I just decided that I needed to find a different solution.
I vowed at that moment that I was never going to diet again. I started looking and researching for a different way. But then life happened. My mom and my mother-in-law got sick pretty much at the same time, and they passed within less than two months of each other and it was a tough time for myself and my family.
I felt distraught and overwhelmed. And honestly, I just kept continuing to gain weight until I was back at 247 pounds. I couldn’t believe I was there again. I couldn’t believe I was on my way to 300. I knew that I was a smart girl. I knew there was a different way. So I continued my journey to find the process that helped me finally lose the weight and learn to love myself and my body.
This is the process that I teach now. No counting calories or points. I will never give my clients a food plan. I learned that every answer led back to my own thoughts and love, it was never about the food. It was all within me and my thoughts, and it’s all within you.
There are no quick fixes, love, that work. But I do have a solution that takes a little time to learn but it helps you lose the weight, and more importantly, it helps you keep the weight off. I have dreamed about this podcast because I love helping women. I love when my client for the first time in a long time has hope. When she begins to lose the weight and all the mental weight she has been carrying, and I want that for you.
I know how heavy carrying extra weight can feel from a body and mind perspective. I know that you can lose hope that you will ever lose the weight. But love, I know it is possible. I know that you can lose weight without dieting. I know this because I’ve done it and I want to teach you how I did it so you can do it too.
I want this podcast to be about teaching you how to get off the diet roller coaster, how to reconnect with your body, and really learn how to love that body you’re in. There are on quick fixes, pills, or potions here. I will never tell you what you eat. But love, stay with me. You are so worth this journey that you are about to start with me.
So let’s get started. I want to talk about something that kept me either on or off the diet roller coaster. I had this belief that I needed to be perfect. I know you guys know what I’m talking about. I wanted everything to be perfect. If I started my new diet, I needed to be perfect.
I would start with all of these hopes and expectation. I was only going to eat what was on the diet plan. I was going to start exercising, I was going to journal, meditate, I was going to be perfect. And if I was perfect, then you know, I would lose five to 10 pounds per week, but only if I was perfect.
And these are the thoughts that were going through my mind on Sunday night before I started on Monday. It was the biggest loser mentality I had learned throughout all my years of endless dieting. But perfection is a lie. There is no perfection. I was so fearful of failure.
I had lost hope and trust in myself. I wanted to be perfect on my diet, perfect at work, a perfect mother, a perfect wife and so on. But I was not perfect. And so I would start a diet, have the best intentions, and by Wednesday when I had not exercised, or I had ate things that were not on my diet plan, I would start to slip.
And then the negative self-talk would happen and then by Friday night I was off again in a full binge and back on the roller coaster. And then the endless negative self-talk would start. I’m never going to do this. I’m not good enough. I’m always going to be overweight.
Even the times that I stayed on a diet for a while, I lost weight, ended up so badly because I just put the weight back on. This is how the diet roller coaster works over and over. And it’s just this endless cycle.
And the thought that I needed to be perfect led to self-sabotage. It led to me justifying when I would eat off my plan to thoughts like I’m never going to be able to do this, I will never lose weight, I might as well just eat what I want. I’m never going to be thin anyways.
The thought that I needed to take all this action and be perfect at it actually led to giving up. And so what I learned is that I need to make small changes and that consistency plus time equals results. So I want to say it again because it’s so important. Consistency plus time equals results.
That the way you make lasting changes is by imperfect actions. Yes, imperfect. And not giving up when I would fail. It’s okay to fail. The important part is that you don’t beat yourself up and you keep going forward.
Beating yourself up over a small failure just leads to more self-sabotage. I have learned this over and over again. We are always looking for the next big thing. We want to start a diet plan like keto or Weight Watchers or some shake or pill. And when I did that, I thought I was going to be perfect. I would have these dreams of losing 30 pounds this month and I would think I just need another food plan or pill.
I remember dreaming about actually – I’m going to share a quick story, but I would dream about honestly, having my mouth wired shut because if I just could not eat, then I could lose all of the weight. And you know, all of that was just perfectionism and we know, love, that perfection is just a lie.
But what will give you success is small imperfect actions. It is consistency over time. Losing my weight, it took small consistent actions. Like showing up every day and doing my realistic food plan. Eating one donut instead of three at the beginning. Reflection work every day.
It took learning how to reconnect with my body and listening to it. The result was losing weight. I’m not perfect. I’ve had many overeats over my journey of losing weight, but I do small things every day. I show up for myself, I’m consistent more than I am not.
I don’t linger in my past or my failures or the lie of perfection. I show up imperfect. And let me tell you, if you get emails from me or you read my blog, there will be spelling errors. It will be grammatically incorrect because I don’t waste time on perfection anymore. It has been the most freeing thing to know that imperfect action will get me amazing results.
On the next few episodes, I’m going to leave you with a transformational question or two, or three. I’ve learned that when I ask my brain a question, I’m amazed by what it tells me. Looking inward is the way I have found to lose weight. It has never been or ever will be about the food. It has always been about our thoughts.
So the transformational questions today are how is perfectionism showing up for you? That’s number one. And number two, what one small imperfect action are you going to do today? So number one, how has perfectionism, how is it showing up for you? And number two, what one small imperfect action are you going to do today?
And then write it down. And then do it again tomorrow. Maybe it’s I’m going to plan my food for today. I’m going to get more water. I’m going to eat more food that fuels my body. What one thing are you going to do?
I want to share with you some of the best advice I ever received. If you look ahead one year or five years from today and you’re okay with where you are, same weight, same body, same thoughts, keep doing what you’re doing today. But if you want something different, you want a different result, then you have to do something different today.
Loves, time just keeps passing and I believe that you are so worth this. So much fun loves, spending some time with you and to celebrate the launch of this show. I am going to be giving away a $50 Amazon gift card to 12 lucky listeners who subscribe, rate, and review the show on iTunes.
It doesn’t have to be a five-star review, although I sure hope you love the show. I want your honest feedback so I can create an awesome show that provides a ton of value for you. Visit bflycoaching.com/podcastlaunch to learn more about the contest and how to enter it.
I’ll be announcing the winners on the show in an upcoming episode. So much love to all of you and I just can’t wait to spend more time with you on next week’s episode.
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!