It is normal to feel frustrated if you’re working hard but aren’t losing weight. But the scale is just one way of looking at your progress. And putting too much value on it can backfire. Here are some ways you can make sure the scale does not sabotage your efforts.
Focus on other measures of success
Progress can be measured in so many ways. Has your energy level improved? Do you feel less tired during the day? Are you sleeping better at night? Are your clothes looser? Can you play with your children longer? Get off the floor more easily? Walk up a flight of stairs without losing your breath? Swim a lap? Run a mile? Are you mentally sharper? Do you feel better in general?
If you answer yes to one or more of these, then stick with it. You’re making big steps toward your health goals. Celebrate those wins!
Weigh yourself without judgment
Commit to weighing in a consistent number of times each week. We recommend getting on the scale at least four times per week — you can use this information to help you make meaningful decisions about your food and exercise in real time. Weigh yourself at the same time each day for a more accurate picture of where you are. Think of your scale as a source of empowering information to help you become more aware of yourself. It has no power and is not judging you.
Remind yourself your thoughts are not facts
Example of a thought: No matter what I do the scale will not go down. I can’t do anything right.
Simply thinking something does not make it true. At first you may not even notice these thoughts as they float through your mind. Once you are aware of them, you can employ the STOP method. The STOP method asks you to observe your thoughts in a nonjudgmental way. Let them go, and do not allow yourself to be overly influenced by them:
S – Slowing down and relaxing, typically by
T – Taking a deep breath, while
O – Observing, without judgment, passing “mental events” known as thoughts, and
P – Planning a different, helpful response that does not involve self-destructive behavior.