Will Power and Weight Loss

Will Power and Weight Loss

I had never thought much about the significance of “will power” until I had a session with a client recently. She is struggling with weight issues and although she’s made progress, she revealed that she sees herself as lacking will power when she overeats or makes a bad food choice. She sees this as a kind of a moral failing. On the surface, this might seem like an obvious answer but as we explored the word and what it means, this in fact was not the case. The problem actually is her not being mindful or aware of what she’d doing and what her body is saying. She might already be full but ignores the sensation and goes for a dessert that she doesn’t really have room for. So what looks like lack of will power is really the problem of not tuning into her body. And if she in fact did tune in and realized she was full and decided to have the dessert anyway, that is an expression of her will, not a lack of it.
I believe that any time a person faults themselves with a lack of will power in regards to anything, not just food, but especially addictions like alcohol, it is actually a manifestation of their internal critic which is a misguided attempt to be helpful in pointing out to them their failure and to motivate them in the future. In reality, that kind of internal dialogue is only discouraging. My client was actively discouraging herself by telling herself that her problem is lack of will power, and a character or moral flaw. So the “solution” to her was to try to correct a character flaw rather than to be mindful of her body.

Self-esteem

Self-esteem

Many clients seem to think that self-esteem is like a fixed quality that you either have or don’t have. I often explain to clients that self-esteem is quite simple. It is the sense of liking ourselves that changes from day to day as we proceed through each day engaging in behaviours and thoughts that increase…Continue Reading

Group Therapy

Group Therapy

One of the things I enjoy about being a group therapist is bringing together people of varying backgrounds who on the surface have different problems to deal with but who discover through the process of opening up and letting down their social masks that they have similar thoughts and feelings as others. It is an…Continue Reading