The Only Opinion that Matters is Yours
Raise your hand if this has happened to you… You are working on weight loss and feeling that things are going well. Your eating is on track and you are feeling better. Then out of the blue someone makes a comment about your body or your eating.
All of a sudden, all the positive momentum you have built up comes crashing to a halt and you are filled with self doubt. Were you really doing as well as you thought? Is this the best way for you to eat? Are you missing out on a better way, method or tool?
I’m assuming almost all of you have your hand raised. This is such a common issue that people I work with talk about. And I have definitely been there over the course of my weight loss as well.
Here is why this creates such problems for us. We are naturally tuned to seek approval from others but we are also naturally wired to view things with a negative light. So when Uncle Bob says something about your weight, it often A) Feels Important and B) Feels like you must be inadequate in some way. (Thank you brain!)
They come in so many forms
Other people’s opinions come in different forms and they can be a bit sneaky. It can be overt like someone saying that you really shouldn’t be eating something. Or sometimes, it seems positive but creates a negative reaction like someone being super enthusiastic about your weight loss and how much better you look.
Being aware when a statement is someone else’s opinion is the first step.
What is an Opinion?
The second step is recognizing that another person’s opinion is their own stuff. Their opinion is born of their own thoughts, feelings and history, It often has very little to do with you. And the reality is that they are entitled to their opinion, it doesn’t have to match yours.
The third step is to recognize that your reaction to their opinion is from your own thoughts. What they say is neutral (I know this may not seem true if you are new to this, but stick with me here) and what makes it feel positive or negative are your thoughts about what they said.
Your thoughts then generate your emotions. Sometimes this happens quickly and the emotion comes so fast, you don’t notice the thought. But it is there, I promise.
This is great news because it means that your reaction to other peoples opinions on your weight loss or body does not depend on what they say. It depends on what you think. When you accept this, you take back so much more control.
Does it Serve You?
You can decide whether or not your thoughts about their opinions are serving you. If they aren’t, you can choose to think about it a different way and choose a new thought.
There is also an option to talk to the other person and make a request. However, I highly recommend you do the work at looking at your own thoughts and how they are impacting how you feel before initiating a conversation. Because the reality is, you may talk to them and ask them to stop/change what they are doing, but they may choose to continue with what they have been doing. You can’t control other people’s behaviour but you can manage your thoughts about it.
For more details, be sure to check out this week’s podcast below.
Arm Yourself with a Superpower
Coaching is the best way to find your own superpowers at weight loss and dealing with other peoples opinions. I can help you navigate situations like this so they no longer trip you up. Book your introductory session (it’s free!) so we can chat about how I can help you.