What do you wish you never did anymore?

Don't text and Drive Green Road Sign with Dramatic Sky, Clouds and Sun.Before I start my blog today, I want to thank all of you who asked for a fall mindbodysoul cleanse class – we’re starting Nov 8! You’ll be done just in time for the holidays – this will be one year you won’t need to put “get clean” or “lose weight” on your list of resolutions! This time, I’m including two individual coaching sessions – bonus!  Click here to join.

I used to text while driving.
Yes, I admit it.
Not proud of it.

Actually I still do it.
I’m a bit addicted.
I said I’m not proud.

I’m trying a new technique.
I’m telling it like I want it to be instead of how it is.

Every time I notice myself checking a text or typing one,
I put the phone down and say “I used to text while driving”.

It’s an interesting experiment.
Every time I do it, I feel a slight shift inside me.
As if it’s becoming true.

You may be surprised – my clients and students know that I’m a bit obsessive about telling it like it is.
I don’t let many untruths get by me when I’m coaching or teaching.
I believe that the truth sets us free
and always feels better.

But this feels right somehow.
I’m telling what I want to be my truth.
The difference is I know I still do it.
I’m not lying to myself or pretending I’m clean of this habit.
I’m fully aware that I’m telling it how I want it to be.

And I think it’s working.

While I still pick up my phone,
I put it down almost immediately.

And I’m thinking that the next step is
during the pause between
when I think about sending a text,
and before I pick up the phone,
I’ll remember that I used to text while driving,
and don’t anymore,
And I won’t even pick it up.

Some of my clients are trying it with binges.
The minute they realize they’re in the middle of an overeat,
they tell themselves “I used to eat when I’m not hungry”.
Some find that it helps them stop eating in a peaceful and natural way.
Which is always the goal for me.

I don’t believe that struggling is an effective way to change behaviour.

What do you wish you used to do, and don’t do anymore?
If it has anything to do with overeating, or over-anything, then my mindbodysoul cleanse class may be just the thing to help you turn that into an “I used to” really soon, really gently.

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Posted in Bev Aron, cleanse, weight loss | Tagged , ,

What are you thankful for?

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Thanksgiving today.

Thankful for

fall colours
a city that prioritizes well maintained ravine trails
biking date with my husband
brunch at School
self-sufficient children

love letters from courageous clients and students

parents coming for dinner

happy soccer sounds from the front yard

Mindfulness to make it all happen.

Remembering what’s important.

Connection.
With Self.
With others.

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Posted in gratitude | Tagged , , ,

How would you move if it wasn’t to lose weight?

This gallery contains 1 photo.

I advise all my clients to move their bodies. As hard and vigorously as they dare. And I tell them this will not help them lose weight. This is a surprise to them. And a relief. Many of my clients … Continue reading

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Wanna know the third best weight loss secret in the universe?

eden crepeMake every bite count.

Actually, this may be the only weight loss secret you need.

Seriously.

I have to call it the third best, because I’ve already shared the first and second best, but this may eclipse them all.

Make. Every. Bite. Count.

Try it today.

It’s impossible to overeat when you’re making every bite count.

We overeat when we stop paying attention to what we’re eating.

Sometimes we don’t even notice we’re eating mindlessly, like at the movies, or during dinner cleanup.

Other times, we’re aware of it and we think we’ve lost control of ourselves so we just keep eating.

But.

If you are committed to making every bite count,
you pay attention to every bite.
Even if you’re watching a movie.
Or, you notice you can’t pay enough attention to what you’re eating to make every bite count, so you either stop the movie or stop eating.

Here’s how you lose weight when you make every bite count (without deprivation of course, because I’m allergic to deprivation, and so are my clients.)

1. You eat only what tastes delicious to you. Impossible to savour it if you don’t love it. You have no idea how often my clients tell me that they ate the whole thing and then noticed that it didn’t even taste good. Make every bite count, and you’ll notice in the middle of the first bite. Mindless eat aborted.

2. You only eat when you’re hungry. Impossible to enjoy the experience of eating when your body is already full. If you pay really close attention, you will notice that whenever your body is satisfied, and you want to continue eating, you start ignoring the fact that you’re eating. Make every bite count, and you’ll abort lots of overeating.

3. You stop eating as soon as your body is satisfied. See #2.

4. You eliminate emotional eating entirely. When we’re upset or frustrated, us emotional eating addicts may turn to food in order to distract ourselves from our feelings. The only way for food to work as a medicator, is if we disconnect from ourselves. We don’t even notice those many many bites, never mind make them count. Make every bite count, and you’re well on the way to addressing the source of your upset or frustration. And recovery from your emotional eating addiction.

Put these together, and, magic, you have eliminated the causes of your excess weight: mindless and emotional overeating.

If you want to reach your ideal weight in the next six months, join Grad School’s Six Month Challenge. Registration closes this Sunday, so email me asap to book your individual blastoff session. Click here to listen to a fifteen minute sample of the first class! You’ll hear me talk about my goal for every day, which is, of course, to Make Every Bite Count.

P.S. the photo is of my spectacular nine year old baby, who is the MakeEveryBiteCount Maestro.

Posted in emotional eating, weight loss | Tagged , , , , , ,

What do you want to weigh in six months?

imPossible conceptI love deciding what I want my future to look like.
And then using the power of my mind to make it happen.

The Grads and I have embraced a six month challenge.
I turn 50 in February, and I am going to weigh 140lbs.
This is my natural weight – where I feel completely at home in my body.
It’s as if I take up exactly the amount of space I was meant to inhabit on this earth.

I’ve weighed around 140lbs for years now.
Ever since I learned how to manage my mind to manage my eating.

Around January, I stopped paying attention.
I noticed that I was hiding from myself.
And I let that be okay.
I was recovering from a crisis,
and I let myself meander my way through.
And now I weigh 150lbs.

I don’t always have to be perfect.
Sometimes I can just be.

Now, I’m rearing to go.
I want to discover what I’ve been hiding from.
I know it’s just thoughts.
Which I have made up.
And I know how to uncover them.
And replace them with truth.
Which always feels so much better.
And never needs to be hidden from.
This is what I’m privileged to do as a coach every day.

I decided to share this work with my inspiring Grads.
They’ve been clients for a while now,
and they’re usually first to experience my new work.
They joined me for my first cleanse class, which evolved into my bi-annual mindbodysoul cleanse (next one is October – results have been spectacular!)

We each decided what we want to weigh in six months time.
Then I coached them so that this number feels possible.
Solid.

If you feel nervous or disbelieving about your goal.
You won’t achieve it or sustain the results.
Goals are only achievable if we feel optimistic excited when we think about them.

This took work.
Each Grad had some negative thinking around her number.
I feel very clear about mine – I know I can do it. Easily.
My Grads are a bit more tentative.

Liz said “I don’t believe I can do it”
This made her feel anxious and scared.
Like me, Liz is an emotional eater, so when she’s scared, she eats to numb her fear.
Guess what her result will be? She won’t do it.
With this belief, she’s going to weigh the same in six months as she does now.

We explored her reasons for thinking she can’t do it.
She told me she’d failed so many times before.

‘Does your past have to equal your future?’ I asked her.
No-o-oo.
‘Do you have new tools to address your emotional eating?’
Yes.
‘Are you willing to consider the possibility that, armed with these new tools, and the support of Grad School, you can do it?’
Immediately, Liz told us about instances in the recent past where she’d maintained her weight during times a recent birthday, a vacation, and Jewish New Year.
All previous weight-gaining times.
Her energy changed, and she felt excited and eager.
She started focusing on the possibility, and recent evidence, that maybe she can do it.

Magic.

Do you know what you want to weigh in six months?
How do you feel when you think about that number?

I know how to help you weigh it.
And have fun while doing it:
We expand your mind while you shrink your body!

You can join us until Oct 4.
After that, you won’t be able to catch up!!!

Here’s the details.
Email me for your registration link, and to arrange your bonus individual blastoff coaching session today!

Posted in freedom, weight loss | Tagged , , , , ,

Can you feast without gaining weight?

1aa64bf0-2c5b-4fa3-8cfa-98424a1d9655Absolutely.
I plan to do just that for the next few weeks.

For us Jews, we’re moving into our busiest season.
Lots of holidays.
Which means lots of food.
Family. Friends.
Sitting around lots of food for long, festive, communal meals.

If you’re not Jewish, stay with me.
This wisdom will apply to any food-related event.

I asked my Jewish Summer Grads (we’re having such fun we’ve extended into fall!)
whether they believe it’s possible to feast without gaining weight.

They want to believe it.
But they’re sceptical. Scared.

It’s important to find out what they believe.
Because they will prove themselves right.

Karen* told me she knew she was going to binge her way through the holidays.
She didn’t believe there was any other possibility.
Her mind was made up.

Problem is, until our session, she didn’t even know that she had made this decision.
She’d been hiding it from herself. From her consciousness.

It’s what she always does.
Then, after, she’s filled with regret (about her weight gain)
and surprise (that she did this once  again).

It’s no surprise to me.

Believing we’re going to overeat guarantees that we’ll overeat.
Even if we fight, criticize and shame ourselves while we’re eating.
Once we think we’re going to do it, we’re going to do it.
Every time.

Luckily, for Karen, and me and you.
This also works in reverse.

If you decide, in advance, that you’re going to have a wonderful time
while you enjoy the exact amount of food your body requires,
You will do exactly that.

There’s one requirement.
You must feel peaceful and solid while you imagine this.
This decision must bring you joy, pride, excitement.

You can’t pretend to yourself about yourself.
You’ll lose that battle.
Take the time to uncover your beliefs that are hiding inside your mind,
preventing you from feeling optimistic about your ability to do
what you are completely capable of doing.
And then question them to expose them for the lies they are.
If you need some help with this, thought-finding and lie-detecting are my specialties!

Here’s how I do it:

  1. I decide beforehand that I won’t eat every course. I’m planning my menu tonight, and even though I love every dish I’m making, I know what I won’t eat. It’s as if these foods have nothing to do with me already.
  2. Cake for breakfast. I know I’ll be too full for dessert. And I love honey cake, which we only serve at this time of year. Easy solution. I’ll have it for breakfast. I know if I eat only when I’m hungry, and stop before I’m full, I won’t gain any weight. Even if breakfast is honey cake (:
  3. I put Karen’s trick to work for me. I decide beforehand that I will enjoy myself, my family, my friends, and the food. In order to do this, I will remain fully conscious and aware every moment. This includes what I eat, what I say, and, most importantly, what I’m thinking and feeling.
  4. I use the power of advance visualization to program my brain. I watch myself behaving how I want to behave, as if it’s a movie in my mind. I see myself putting the fork down between mouthsful. Conversing. Laughing. Easily skipping courses. Effortlessly stopping when I my body is satisfied.  I feel how calm and centred I am. I feel how satisfied my stomach is, how comfortable my body is with the amount of food I have eaten, how easy it has all been. Then, when I get to the meal, it’s like this is my default now. I simply play out my role that I have deliberately chosen for myself. And that becomes my reality.

Prove yourself wrong this New Year.
Eat like you love it.
And don’t gain a pound.

Shana Tova to all my Jewish readers
xoxo

 

*not her real name, of course

 

 

 

Posted in weight loss | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

How can I enjoy my vacation without gaining weight?

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How cute is this couple??
My friend, Eileen, just returned from a two week trip to Italy the same weight as she left.
Italy!!! Pasta! Gelato! Olives! Cannoli!
I mean, even Elizabeth Gilbert gained weight in Italy!!

We’re heading into the last few weeks of summer vacations,
and most of my clients are having difficulty believing that they can have a brilliant time, enjoy the food, and lose or maintain their weight while they are travelling.

So I asked Eileen to share how she did it.
Watch out for my absolutely favourite thought she just gave us, which I’ve highlighted in bold AND italicized I love it so much!!!

“Last fall my husband and I decided that we would take a trip to Italy to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. He spent the better half of a year planning every detail of our two-week trip, from the cities, to the hotels, to the sites, to the restaurants. I decided that if he was going to all the trouble to make such a memorable trip, I had to make the most of each part.

To do that, I realized I had to be at the top of my game: I had to be my physical and mental best and part of that meant not worrying about food and gaining weight. Before we left I upped my workout regime. I wanted to be strong and healthy to ensure that I had the energy to enjoy the sights and do the things that needed to get done (i.e.. carry luggage up and down a train platform with minimal whining).

This was my plan:
1. Wear comfortable shoes – even if they’re not in high fashion because sore feet will stop you from doing almost anything.
2. Take my vitamins and supplements as usual – that meant filling up the container nightly to bring with me the next day.
3. Eat when I was hungry – I carried nuts in my purse so that if I was hungry before “lunchtime” and we were in a museum I could have a snack and focus on the sites, not my hunger.
4. Add healthy foods daily – Instead of worrying about NOT eating certain foods, I tried to focus on ADDING foods. This meant eating veggies and fruit whenever I could, especially at breakfast.
5. Be flexible – I quickly decided not to get hung up on the fact that my usual lower fat choices weren’t available and that meals were taking place at times I’m not accustomed to – instead I focused on portion size and listening to my body’s signals of fullness.
6. Accept the fact that foods are not endangered. There’s always another delicious Italian wine or gelato just around the corner. Really. Even tiramisu.
7. Get enough sleep – for me this means no caffeine or sweets too late because that’s what keeps me up at night.
8. Skip the afternoon food pick-me-up – Instead of grabbing a cup of coffee and a snack (sweet or healthy), I took a shower. So what if I had already taken one in the morning? Showering actually re-energized me more than eating something.

Did my plan work? Yes! I felt energized, up to everything and I didn’t gain weight. On past trips, joy foods were a primary focus because I believed that’s what brought me joy. I used this trip to create the evidence I needed that, while food really can enhance an experience, it is not my primary source of joy. My true joy came from taking the trip of a lifetime with my husband.”

FOODS ARE NOT ENDANGERED.
huh.
That’s really all we need to know, right?
Honestly, I got a cold shiver when I read that (I know, I’m wierd that way – it’s what happens when I read or hear a life changing truth.)

Think about it.
Food will always be there. No danger of extinction.
How differently would we think and eat if we truly and deeply remembered that?

Posted in freedom

How can I stop eating in the middle of a binge?

Free Yourself Chains Breaking Free Links UnboundI just found out how today!

The minute you notice that you’re eating too much
Start to observe yourself
Without judgement or opinion.
Just notice.

When we’re bingeing, our conscious mind has temporarily left our bodies.
We’re in autopilot, doing what we always do when we’ve disconnected from ourselves.

If we can dispassionately watch  our actions, our thoughts and our feelings,
Then it becomes impossible to continue the binge
Because the binge is designed solely to pretend you aren’t there.

It’s the opposite of what we normally do.
We think we must criticize, shame and punish ourselves,
Which just makes us want to hide in our food even more.

Try it my way.
I did it today.
Effortlessly.

I went to the South African store to buy curry powder (BEST).
I was born and raised in South Africa,
And we immigrants have a strong story that South African chocolate is the best by far.

I have many memories of huge binges on South African chocolate with my high school friends,
and later, shamefully, on my own.

I bought what I came for,
helped my kids choose a candy,
and then watched myself buy a few for me.

I got in the car,
eagerly and guiltily anticipating the stupor that was to follow.

But I couldn’t do it.
My Watcher was with me all the time.
Naming my actions, my experience.

In the car, I unwrapped a Chocolate Log,
which has been the object of many a frenzied binge.

I watched myself take the first bite.
Because I was still consciously staying with myself,
I noticed that the fluffy filling was way too sweet.
The chocolate a bit grainy.
And the wafer too soft.

I took another bite, just to make sure.
No change.

Being a recovering emotional eating addict,
I pulled the fluffy part from the wafer to see if that was going to give me the rush I was looking for.
No. Still too sweet, still not fluffy enough.

If I wasn’t in Watcher mode, I would have finished the Chocolate Log long before I noticed that it wasn’t living up to my memory of it.

Undeterred, I moved on to the Jelly Tots – chewy, sugar coated bits of soft yummy.
Today, another disappointment.
The flavours tasted fermented to me, almost alcoholic
(Which didn’t stop my nine year old from obsessing over them!)

In amazement, I watched myself.

I observed how
when I’m observing myself
and staying with myself
It’s possible to stop eating in the middle of a binge
without any resistance or regret.

Truly, it’s the only possible thing to do.

I loved this discovery.

At the Life Coach School, where I teach, we call a binge a Storm Eat.
You know you’re doing it and you just can’t stop.
You wait for the Storm to pass,
pick up the pieces, dissect your thinking, learn the lesson,
and eat only when you’re hungry again.

Today I discovered that it’s absolutely possible to interrupt a storm.

Although you may tell yourself that you’re out of control,
and therefore unable to stop eating,
The minute you are able to bring yourself to consciousness,
Find that part of you that is still, quiet, present and accepting.
And then stay there

Stopping the binge is the only possible option.

It probably helped that I had just meditated two hours before.
Getting in touch with the still, quiet,  nonjudgemental part of myself
when I’m calm
makes it so much easier to find her when I’m not.

Meditating, journaling with my nondominant hand, coaching, watching myself breathe, grounding, tuning in to how my body feels at any moment, observing my thoughts flowing freely, these are my ways of staying in touch.

I highly recommend you develop a frequent practice too.

That way, when you are in the middle of a binge
all you have to do is call in your compassionate watcher
and watch yourself watch the storm pass easily and peacefully

Because  stopping the binge will be the only possible option.

Posted in freedom | Tagged , , , , , ,

How can you use your creative mind to lose weight?

child Head

Here’s one brilliant way:

Bev

I thought about you after my run yesterday and wanted to tell you that your blog post  about riding your bicycle when you were a little out of shape really inspired me to get my own mojo going.  

I’ve gained some weight too.  At least five pounds and I feel it.  Yesterday morning I told myself I was “too heavy to run” — especially my normal route with the long slow incline, especially with the sun beating down.  Then I remembered these runs we used to do at my CrossFit gym wearing weighted vests (sort of like those ones you put on when you’re having an X-ray).  It would not be unusual for me to walk into the gym and the WOD (“workout-of-the-day”) scribbled in chalk on the blackboard would be:  “5k run, 5 lb. weighted vest.”  Would I have turned around and gone home?  Would I have told the coach:  “I’m sorry, that’s too heavy.”  No.  I would have done it.  Have done it.  And those workouts were hard.  But they were great conditioning.  After one of those, my “regular” run felt like I was floating, like I could go double the distance.  

So yesterday I told myself: “Today’s workout is a 5k weighted run” and I did it.  And it was hard.  My legs felt like lead, like I was running in place.  But I know that my “regular,” peppy run is coming a lot sooner because I was willing to do the “weighted” run, the one that didn’t feel good.  These extra five pounds are not my normal.  They are just a conditioning exercise.  As I was walking back to the house I sort of chuckled to myself:  “You really pulled that run out of your ass today!”  Right then you floated into my mind and I realized I had actually pulled it out of your bicycle blog post!  So, once again, thank you and keep ‘em coming!  

Enjoy your weekend!

Love,

Scarlett

We all want to feel better.
We think we want to be thin so we can be thin.
But really, we believe that being thin will make us feel better.

Coaching teaches you a way to feel better now.
My Weight Coach Training students are worried that if they allow themselves to feel better about their bodies now,
they’ll never lose their excess weight.

The opposite is actually true.
If Scarlett had hated on herself for those extra 5 pounds, she never would have gone for a run.
She would have stayed home, and probably eaten 5 pounds of food to quiet all the hateful voices in her head.
So hating herself for being overweight would have led to her gaining more weight.

Instead, she found a way to feel better about taking her extra 5 pounds for a hard run.
Which will lead to her releasing some of that excess weight.
And she felt enthusiastic and proud of herself immediately.
And good feelings lead to positive actions, so I predict she’ll be doing more of these runs.
And lose more weight.

Works every time.

If you want a refresher course in using your brilliant mind to feel better and lose weight, you should join Summer Grad School now because that’s what we’re doing over there (past clients, coaches, and past clients of other coaches only).
If this idea is new to you, and feels hopeful, please email me and we’ll talk about how I can help you acquire this essential weight loss skill.

Posted in emotional eating, exercise, freedom | Tagged , , , ,

Why do I keep eating when I’m uncomfortably full?

Turn on bulb on green backgroundWe reach for more food when we’ve eaten so much that we feel physically uncomfortable.
We think that more food is what we want.

Does this sound familiar to you?
It comes up a lot in my coaching practice,
so I’m sharing my  email exchange with Jen* here.

Jen: I notice this week that when I am not feeling “good” in my body – and that means clothes feel tight, tummy feels bloated, etc – instead of feeling the uncomfortable feeling, I want to eat. It makes no sense if you feel bloated or chubby to eat- but maybe its about eating enough to numb out? am i right?

Me: I know! I do it too – makes no sense physically – but makes absolute sense if you’re trying to escape your feelings caused by what you’re telling yourself about your bloated stomach and tight clothes.
So….
What are you telling yourself?
You say you ‘want to eat’ but what do you really want?

Jen: What I really want (in that moment) is to not feel uncomfortable or fat or bloated, so obviously eating makes no sense! But I definitely want to!
So weird!!

Me: I think you do want to feel fat and bloated and uncomfortable.
Otherwise you wouldn’t want to eat more (:
So….
There’s something you would be feeling if you weren’t feeling uncomfortable and bloated that is scarier for you than bloated and uncomfortable.
I wonder what that would be?

Jen: bingo. i got it. it only took a year 🙂 lol.
thank you bev

lightbulb borderWe do things that make no sense to us.
That cause us discomfort.
And we can’t figure out why.

I have found that it’s almost always to avoid a feeling.

Jen was smart enough, and aware enough, to pause.
To not reach for the food in order to observe herself.
She gave herself the space to notice what she’s doing.
And ask “why?”.

Jen and I will need to explore further to discover exactly which feeling she’s trying to avoid by eating when she’s full.
And then we’ll look at why she’s scared of it, and what she’s thinking to bring on this feeling.

This is the pure magic of coaching.

A diet can teach you how to eat so you don’t ever get full.
For sure.
But only the type of coaching that we do and teach at The Life Coach School can help you find the reason you ever wanted to overeat in the first place.
And then extinguish that urge so you never need to use will power or discipline to stop eating.

It’s called causal coaching.

We find the cause of the urge.
And we look it straight in the eye, together.

We unravel it, together.
Often, it loses its power right then.
Other times, we need to play with it,
shift it a bit,
find another way to tell the story.

I am deeply honoured to bear witness to these ‘bingo moments’.
Each one lessens the hold that we have given food on our psyche
And glides us towards freedom.
One thought at a time.

Jen was so inspired by the work we did that she is going to become a Weight Coach herself! Weight Coach Training starts next week, and if you’re feeling called to join us, we have a few spots left – email me asap so we can get you signed up in time for Tuesdays’ class!

*Jen is not her real name, of course. My clients identities are highly classified and protected.

Posted in emotional eating, weight | Tagged , , , , , , , ,