We don’t trust ourselves when we’re terrified of messing up, depriving ourselves of even the slightest bit of joy in the process, and that is no way to approach a healthy lifestyle. It took me years, but I have developed a process that has enabled me to avoid the fear and place real trust in myself when it comes to food, and I know you can apply this in your own life too.
Our lizard brains feed off of our fears. They tell us things are scary because they don’t know any better, but there is no room for fear when we’re losing weight for good. So listen in this week as I discuss the 3 types of fear that keep us stuck and how you can work past them once and for all.
You are listening to the Weight Loss for Successful Women podcast with Shannan Christiansen, episode number 10.
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 just cannot believe we are at episode number 10. I mean, 10 episodes. I remember wanting to have a podcast, wanting to work with Pavel and Angela, my podcast producers, and it just really is a dream come true.
I want to thank all the ladies that are listening and who rated and reviewed the show. I am so appreciative. And at the end of today’s show, I will announce the 12 lucky listeners who will receive a $50 gift card, and five lucky listeners who will receive some BFLY swag. I mean, so fun, right, ladies?
So, because this is number 10, I really wanted to go a little deeper and talk about something that keeps us stuck on the diet rollercoaster; fear. I’m going to talk about the different ways we let fear take over, also known as the lizard brain. And then, of course, I will leave you with a couple of transformational questions so that you can start taking action today.
But I also added a little bonus, because this episode is so special. So my Jumpstart program is going to open again on January 1st and I currently have a waitlist. So you can get on that waitlist now. And when you sign up for the waitlist, you’ll also get a freebie in your email inbox. And the freebie is this free worksheet that goes along with this episode. We’ll tell you how to get the freebie at the end of the show.
As always, I want to do a listener shout-out. This is where I will read a review of the podcast every week. This week’s listener shout-out is to AuntTonya89. She wrote, “Real life put into plain and easy terms. It breaks it down into simple steps and step by step for lifelong changes, not just diet changes. Thank you, Shannan.” Well, thank you, AuntTanya89 for the amazing review.
So, I was in California for last week. I love going to California. I go there once a month every month, and I have work there. But I love going to California. It’s beautiful. The weather was a little chilly and foggy, I won’t lie, but always in the afternoon, there’s sunshine in California.
And this week coming up, I’m going to Greensboro, North Carolina, and Delaware. And I travel a lot, some for work, and I always get to throw in a little pleasure too. I remember always overeating on work trips, and using it, honestly, as an excuse to binge.
Work trips are usually pretty busy for me. Lots of people and I’m an introvert. So at the end of the day, for real, ladies, I am running back to my hotel room so I can get some alone time. And it used to be a hotel room plus whatever sugar I could pick up.
It’s just so interesting to me how things have changed. I’ve learned to be uncomfortable, even feel fear. And now, work trips are not something I want to avoid. I look for the good in them. I stick with my daily routines, even when I’m out of town.
So, in today’s show, I want to talk about fear and how fear keeps us stuck on the diet rollercoaster. We have the fear of failure, so we quit or we don’t even start. I have done that numerous times, loves. We have a fear of hunger, a fear that somehow, we might feel uncomfortable or even hungry. And we will do anything to prevent those feelings. And lastly, a fear of change. These fears are often unconscious, so we might not even be aware of them.
So, a fear of failure – I talk about this a lot because it is such a dream-stealer, ladies. We decide we want to start something like making a realistic plan and we do it for a couple of days, and then our brains start telling us why it’s hard, why we will fail, and why this won’t work. Then we listen to our brains. So, we quit.
We tell ourselves it’s because we are busy or it takes too much time or that it is hard. Those thoughts are just poison to our dreams. The real truth is we have failed. We have quit on ourselves. I did this so many times, love, so many times.
And we don’t trust ourselves any longer, so we develop a fear of it. We would rather stay in the uncomfortableness of carrying extra weight, staying in a job we don’t love, not taking care of ourselves. We would rather have the pain of all of that than face the fear of failure, the fear of mistakes.
When I was losing my weight, I had to watch my lizard brain. Learning to become a watcher of my thoughts was one of the most important things I did to lose weight for good. I had to notice the poisonous thoughts that were rattling around in this brain of mine because my thoughts cause a feeling and then I act on that feeling.
I had to notice when I was fearful of food, when I was scared to eat a cupcake because I thought I could not control myself and I would go into a full binge. I know, ladies, I know you feel me on this. You know, loves, we fear food because we’re so scared that we are going to start overeating again.
But my process works. I have a process that works for me. I know now what to do. If I want a cupcake, I just put it on my realistic plan. And then, when it’s time to eat, if I still want it, I eat it. I slow down. I enjoy it. And when I start to feel satisfied, I stop.
I’m watching my Jumpstarters go through this now, the fear of failure. They’re starting to notice thoughts that they didn’t’ even know were there. they are noticing that they don’t want to make their realistic plan or they start comparing themselves to others in the group. And when they go deeper, they see it’s just old thoughts and beliefs of failure.
I had tons of overeats, not making my realistic plan, not getting enough sleep and water, eating too many non-fuel foods while I was losing my weight. I’ll still have some of it now. I just use my process, my fundamentals. I’m not afraid of failure or mistakes. I know that it’s part of the process.
I actually write down my failures, and then I ask myself questions on why I overate. Why did I not make my realistic plan? This is one of the secrets to losing weight for good. It’s learning how to stop fearing failure and welcoming it.
The second fear I want to talk about today is the fear of hunger. OMG, loves, I did not ever want to be hungry. I had done enough of the restrictive 1000 calorie diets that I would do anything not to feel hungry. I would pack enough snacks when I would go on airplane rides. I would bring a snack in my purse if I went to a conference.
Or you know when you go to someone’s house for dinner and you’re scared they’re not going to have something that you like? So I would literally pack a snack or eat right before because I would be so scared, again, of this fear of hunger.
I was so fearful of the sensation of hunger, I would actually tell myself I would pass out if I felt hunger, or, “Oh my goodness, I’m feeling light-headed, I must be hungry.” And, loves, for real, we can go without food for three weeks.
Now, I’m not telling you to do that, but I’m saying our ancestors for sure were not eating every two hours, and maybe not even every day, and our bodies are made to go periods of time without eating. And I’m not telling you not to eat for three weeks. I want to make sure that that is clear. But I’m saying that you can have a few-hour food breaks, is what I like to call it, and live to tell the story, love. As long as you don’t have a medical condition that is relevant, so always make sure that you check with your doctor.
It makes me laugh because, seriously, I would panic if I thought there was not going to be enough food. I mean, seriously panic. But, Loves, our body, every night, takes a food break while we’re sleeping. It needs the break so it can repair and regenerate our bodies. It is okay to feel a little bit of hunger.
And when you let yourself feel a little hunger, you know then what hunger feels like in your body. If you don’t know what it feels like, and let me tell you, loves, I did not know what it feels like, then you’ll stay on the diet rollercoaster because, when you learn what hunger feels like and what being satisfied feels like in your body, it’s the only way to get off diets.
And when you learn what physical hunger feels like versus emotional hunger, then you can begin to choose to eat only when you feel physical hunger. And, loves, you can stop eating your feelings.
I know, ladies, your lizard brains are saying all kinds of stuff right now. I really do. Like, “Shannan, I can’t feel hunger.” But when I learned that physical hunger, what it felt like, and I stopped fearing it, then I could choose to eat when I was physically hungry. I didn’t need to count calories or follow a food plan.
My body had all of the mechanisms built right in. I just had to stop fearing them. One of the ways I learned what hunger felt like was I extended my nightly food break. So around 10am, I usually would eat breakfast at 7am or 8am and what I would do is extend that to about 10am. And then I could actually feel what hunger felt like in my body.
Another way is, when I think I’m hungry, I ask myself if a chicken breast would take care of it. If yes, then I know that it’s physical hunger. But if the only thing that would satisfy me is a donut then I know it’s some emotion that I’m trying to avoid or resist.
Now, loves, the third fear that keeps us stuck is the fear of change. Our lizard brains are wired to keep us safe and safety is familiarity and change is danger in our brains. We are wired to fear change.
I named my company BFLY Coaching because I love butterflies. I love that they start out as caterpillars and transform into butterflies. The scientific process of that transformation is crazy. Like, they get down to a liquid. How scary is that?
But we would not have butterflies if they didn’t go through that transformation. And, loves, we were all made to be butterflies. We are never supposed to stay a caterpillar.
Our lizard brain is always going to tell us to stay the same, that we should fear change, that it is scary. I would have thoughts when I was losing my weight, like what if you become a different person when you lose the weight? What if you have loose skin? What if you gain the weight back? Those were just poisonous thoughts that I was thinking to keep myself stuck, stuck on the diet rollercoaster.
To lose weight for good, we must change. We have to talk to our brains more than we listen to them. We have to understand that we’ll have fear, but we can feel it. We can allow the feeling of fear and still take action that serves us. Loves, we can step into the light, even when our brains tell us to stay in the cave.
Fear is just an emotion. Our thoughts are just sentences in our brains. We can feel a feeling. We can change. You’ve got this, love. Just becoming a watcher, knowing that you’ll have fear and walking through it anyway is the key to getting off the diet rollercoaster for good.
So here are a couple of transformational questions. How is fear showing up in your life right now? And what would you need to think to feel a different emotion other than fear?
Now, loves, if you want to take this work and you want to take it deeper, then head on over to bflycoaching.com/waitlist. This is the waitlist for my Jumpstart program. It opens again on January 1st. You’ll also get a free worksheet in your email when you get on the waitlist and it accompanies this episode, so you can really take this work deeper.
Okay, ladies. We did the drawing for the 12 Amazon $50 gift cards. I am just so thankful that you are listening and so grateful that you rated and reviewed the show.
So, our winners are Diana Ford, Pam Osborne, Sonya, Tina Angel, Tammy Mulliner, Jill Mackary, Shelby Lazerine, Sonya Kirkman, Tonya Sanders, Penny Eiber, Christine Wade, and Sharon Edwards. I am just so excited for you ladies.
And we also wanted to throw in a little BFLY swag, so we drew five winners for BFLY swag and they are Bonnie Esposato, Lisa Madigan, Emily Wells, Francis, and Dawn Richards.
Ladies, I am just so grateful that you’re listening and that you rated and reviewed the show. Thank you so much.
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!