Focus on your journey and not the journey of others.

Okay I get it, there is nothing more annoying than walking into group feeling confident after a good week on plan only to mount the scales and not see the loss you felt you deserved. To make it worse and really add salt to the wound you then overhear others discuss the takeaways and wine they’ve had this week, and wait for it… they’ve lost more than you. It’s annoying, but does their weight loss really impact YOUR journey? No! Not unless you let it.

Everyone is different, everyone’s body is different, everyone’s metabolism is different, you simply cannot compare and the sooner we all accept this the better! Stop focusing on how well other people are doing and start focusing on how well you are doing, and if you aren’t doing as well as you would like address why this may be.

Everyone embarking on a weight loss journey has different reasons and different amounts to lose, we all have different food demons to face and reasons why we turn to food. Draw inspiration, tips and tools from others but don’t compare. Comparing will lead to resentment and disappointment. It could also lead to unhealthy techniques that we all know so well, the vicious circle of binge eating and starvation.

You couldn’t compare the journey of someone starting out at 23 stone to that of someone ten stone smaller, of course they would lose weight at different speeds. You may even be envious of their big weight losses but ask yourself are you envious of the long journey they have ahead of them? I bet if you asked them they would give anything to be your current or ‘start’ weight.

I have had consistent ‘good’ losses (FYI all losses are good even those cheeky half pounds!) but I also have in excess of eight stone to lose. I am lucky that my group is very supportive, but I have to admit sometimes I hang my head in shame when I’ve had a good loss, I don’t want to see the disappointment in peoples faces when they haven’t lost as much as me. When I see the occasional look I want to remind everyone that even though I’ve lost nearly four and a half stone, I still have another four and a half stone to lose before I reach my interim target, let alone my end target! I have a long road ahead of me.

Now I am not saying this to make ANYONE feel bad, it’s a natural feeling and we all feel a little envious now and again, me included. But this week as I mounted the scales to see a loss of 4.5 lbs I was met with a comment: “God are you even eating.” And do you know what it made me feel really sad. Just to reiterate I LOVE my Slimming World group and am a member of the social team so this is in no way meant to be detrimental to anyone at my group, again I LOVE my group!! But I wanted to use this as an example.

I left group this week feeling a little disheartened and sad at that comment and one other comment I overheard when I received Slimmer of The Week. When I got home it took a lot for me not to take that sadness and bury it in my friend food, or my best friend chocolate. I found myself right back at the start of my journey feeling a little lost and seeking comfort.

But I realised that I don’t want to do that anymore. I want the best life for me, this is my journey and I am proud of all I have achieved. As we all should be. Everyday I decide what to fuel my body with, it is me that is making the right choices for MY body. We need to be accountable for ourselves, own your journey and focus on you.

For years I wasn’t accountable for myself, I wasn’t in denial I knew it was me who had eaten myself into the ‘morbidly obese’ category, but at every opportunity the blame shifted to someone or something else.  Here are just some of the reasons why it wasn’t my fault; I’d been fat my entire life and doomed with the ‘fat gene’. I was a big child and my parents fed me! When in reality I didn’t help myself. I would have a healthy meal and then hoard chocolate penguins in my room, eating in secret. I would be packed off to school with a healthy packed lunch only to buy an iced bun or a slice of pizza from the school canteen.

But for the first time in a long time I am accountable and I am focused.

I am focused on ME. I am not comparing my journey and getting side tracked. When other people are doing well, I am not trying to match their weight losses, I am seeking inspiration and applauding their efforts. When I don’t do as well as I would like, I look back at my food diary and OWN where I may have gone wrong.

This has begun to sound like a rant which in no means was it meant to! So I’ll round up before I’m renamed Diary of an Angry Fat English Girl.

The only person who can lose your excess weight is you, so stop focusing on other people, stop comparing, start feeling proud of your achievements and start owning this journey. We are all in this together but ultimately only you have the power to make a real change in your own life.

p.s On an entirely different note and just in case anyone missed the memo… I am officially a graduate!!

©Sarah Woodside

©Sarah Woodside