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What To Do When You Want To Give Up

AT SOME POINT during this course, you may get frustrated, angry, or disappointed in yourself and your behavior. It is my intent to equip you with the skills to make a different choice during those times.

For instance, if you are an emotional eater, you will begin to look at eating differently. If you customarily eat when you are lonely and you begin to feel lonely during this course, the urge to eat will still be there. In such moments, if you don’t eat and don’t distract yourself, you will then have to sit with the uncomfortable feeling of being lonely. This is where some people bolt. They bolt because they don’t know what else to do. They will do anything to avoid feeling lonely. They don’t even know how to sit in that feeling. If you are uncomfortable with your feelings I want to recommend a book called The Food and Feelings Workbook by Karen Koenig.

So you aren’t an emotional eater and you still want to give up? You don’t have to be perfect. Your goal should be progress, not perfection. Recently I had a client who was doing fantastic until she visited Target on Dec 26 and bought Christmas candy 50% off. She spent the night of the 26th on her bed eating until she had heartburn so bad she couldn’t sleep until 3 am. When she came in for her visit with me on Dec 28 she was ready to give up. She was focused on the one bad night and disregarded the other 6 1/2 good days. I told her:

For 30 years you saw the candy on sale, bought it and ate it all. You aren’t going to charge that behavior forever in 3 weeks.

Don’t think that because you made poor choices for a day or a weekend, it means you can’t do see this program through. Every minute is a chance to make a different choice. We find that many participants who didn’t exercise, who didn’t complete their lectures, who feel like they have overeaten, or who temporarily neglected some other aspect of the program are embarrassed and feel guilty. Rather than saying, “I had a horrible weekend. I ate pizza and chocolate chip ice cream. I drank a case of beer and laid around all day Sunday sleeping and watching TV,” they just bolt. They decide this is too hard. They decide this method does not work for them. They decide this is not the right time for them to lose weight. They rationalize their decision to quit.


When you have had a bad day, here are some tips:

  • Remember you should not expect perfection from yourself. Changing your lifestyle is hard work. Setbacks should not be shocking. What’s important is how you deal with these setbacks.
  • Think about all the good things you have done. One weekend of bad eating does not negate the 5 pounds you previously lost or the exercise routine you started. Give yourself credit for the positive changes you have made and be realistic about where you are struggling. It’s our job to help you figure out why you struggle and to help you get back on track.
  • Reflect – ask yourself why you are struggling. You may not know. Is it that you lack willpower? Sometimes that is the case, but often there’s more to it. Could you be sabotaging your own efforts? Why would you do that? This is what makes Lifexcel different from countless other weight loss programs.

Lastly, make a list of advantages of quitting. Then make a list of disadvantages of quitting. Reflect on your lists and make your choice.