“But Nobody Else Will Want Me”
I’m almost afraid to admit the number of people I’ve worked with who stay stuck where they are because they don’t think they’re worth more. Their job. Their marriage. Their relationship. Their friendships. They “settle,” and can’t see that they deserve more than what they’re getting.
Of course I’m not referring to those healthy, functional relationships where each partner is there to serve and take care of the other. These are the ideal, as long as each partner knows the secret rule: take care of yourself first, so that you can be available to take care of others.
No, I’m talking about the marriage where one party is constantly being put down, shut down, or brought down by the others’ words or actions. Where physical abuse happens. Where mental/emotional/spiritual abuse is the norm of everyday life. I see this a lot, and the crazy thing is that MOST DON’T EVEN KNOW IT’S NOT NORMAL.
Many grew up in an environment where it was the norm, so it shouldn’t be surprising that, later in life, they’re attracted to those who perpetuate it. They only know what they know, and they don’t know what they don’t know.
Also, many can’t leave, even though it’s too painful. The cycle of abuse is so ingrained in them that they are actually uncomfortable without all the ensuing chaos and craziness. We who don’t struggle with it wonder why they return to their abusers? But if you think about it, it makes sense. That’s their “normal.”
I’m a weight loss and nutrition coach in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada. I offer programs to help people lose weight and get in shape in-person, on the phone, and via Skype. Health and fitness is my game, and in support of that, I create programs that optimize the chances that people will succeed in becoming the best they can be. You can learn more here: www.fitin20.ca .
So why the focus on beliefs and self-esteem today? Because people eat to soothe negative feelings, and lack of self-esteem creates plenty of those. It stands to reason, then, that if we solve the self-esteem problem, we may just solve the overeating and overweight problem. Make sense?
The Problem Lies in Our Beliefs and Thoughts
If I’ve been told all my life that I’m not good enough, then that’s going to become a core belief for me. Usually that belief is accompanied by another one. It goes like this:
“I’m afraid to tell you who I really am, what I really think, and what I really feel, because if I do, I know you won’t like me.”
Cognitive Behavioural Therapists will tell you that this is a belief stemming from a type of distorted thinking called “Mind-Reading” and “Fortune-Telling.” I call it “Playing God.” When I’m engaged in this type of thinking, I believe I can predict the future (i.e. I know what you’ll be thinking after I reveal myself to you). I also believe that I can read your mind (i.e. I know what your thoughts are).
None of us, of course, has either of these powers. But worry and fear stems much from our engaging in this particular type of distorted thinking. Instead of living in the moment, and assuming that people will give us the benefit of the doubt, we expect the worst. For those of us who have been physically/verbally/mentally/emotionally/spiritually abused, this type of thinking is normal. It is our default. We can’t imagine doing otherwise.
But we’ve all met those people who are optimistic, whose lives are open books, who don’t mind telling us who they really are, because they’re just plain nuts about themselves! They believe that they ARE ENOUGH, and that if anyone thinks they aren’t, the problem lies with the other person, not them. They are free, because nobody else has the power to affect them. What a wonderful way to live.
“WHAT OTHER PEOPLE THINK OF ME IS NONE OF MY BUSINESS.”
They understand that this kind of thinking is the right kind, and in fact they do it naturally, without having to work at it. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to not care a bit what other people think of you? You can, you know.
Choosing to Ignore What Others Think Is the Answer
When I care about what you think of me, I’m controlled by whether or not you approve of my thoughts, my words, my beliefs, and my actions. I therefore modify everything about me to suit you. There are two problems with this.
First, it’s never enough. I’m never going to be able to be everything you want or need, and I’ll fall down on some point, somewhere, sometime. You’ll be displeased with me, and I’ll suffer emotionally because I’ll be upset that you’re upset with me. A guy like me will then most likely turn to comfort eating, in order to soothe any feelings of failure and inadequacy that result.
Second, it’s too much effort to try and be all things to all people! It’s not possible! I’ll wear myself out in the process, and will turn again to maladaptive behaviours, like overeating.
So let’s stop trying to please others, and instead work on pleasing ourselves. If we’re going to win at the game of losing weight, then we have to. There’s no other way.
Don’t Believe the Hype
Our spam filters are filled with junk, lots of it. A look at mine reveals that most of what I receive is in one of the following 3 categories:
1. Weight loss products
2. Pills/potions/lotions to aid with Erectile Dysfunction
3. Pills/potions/lotions to aid with Penis Enlargement
What are these e-mails trying to tell us? Ladies, you’re not enough because you weigh too much. Men you’re not enough because you’re incapable of satisfying a woman sexually.
Stop. Stop it. Stop it all right now.
YOU. ARE. ENOUGH. And if anyone tells you otherwise, you need to remove them from your life immediately – either permanently OR until they stop mistreating you – and replace them with others who KNOW that you’re enough.
Weight loss will not solve your feelings of inadequacy. You may think that all you need to do is lose your weight to feel better about yourself, but that’s a lie. I can promise you that you will still feel inadequate after losing your weight IF you don’t deal with the negative thinking that causes the feelings of inadequacy. I’ve seen it happen dozens of times. People who are now thin but still hate themselves. Usually – unless they deal with that – they gain their weight back.
In my upcoming book “Where Winners Lose & Losers Win: PERMANENT Weight Loss Made Simple,” I show you how to tackle that kind of thinking and DEFEAT IT. There are many tools available, and they work: you just need to know what they are, and how to use them.
I develop fitness training programs,and do nutritional counselling here in Mississauga. My one-on-one programs include teaching you how to navigate this type of thinking.
If you struggle with low self-esteem and believing that you’re great just the way you are, there is help. Why not reach out to me at 647-677-6025 by phone or text, or at firstname.lastname@example.org? I’d love to have you in for a free consultation to see how I can help you. It’s worth it, and it just might be the answer you’re looking for!