Give Yourself A Break! Getting A Beach Body’s All In The Mind!

Away with negativity - holidays should be a delight but fear of not looking 'beach ready' is a problem for some. Picture by Piotr Bizior
Nicola Forshaw is the owner of Mindfit, a health & wellbeing practice based in Liverpool city centre. Nicola is a Clinical Hypnotherapist, a member of the British Institute of Hypnotherapy and an accredited Mindfulness trainer. Nicola has taught Mindfulness to individuals, schools and companies across Liverpool and is passionate about improving wellbeing. Nicola@mind-fit.co.uk
Nicola Forshaw is the owner of Mindfit, a health & wellbeing practice based in Liverpool city centre. Nicola is a Clinical Hypnotherapist, a member of the British Institute of Hypnotherapy and an accredited Mindfulness trainer. Nicola has taught Mindfulness to individuals, schools and companies across Liverpool and is passionate about improving wellbeing.
Nicola@mind-fit.co.uk
AUGUST is the most popular month of the year for going on holiday, but the thought of getting into a bikini or even holiday clothes can be scary for some. According to recent research two thirds of women go on a diet before a holiday, with the majority trying for an average 8lb weight loss, but as chocolate, wine and life get in the way many of us start crash dieting 2 weeks before we go away. Failure to lose the pounds can leave us feeling self-conscious so it’s important to work with the mind as well as the body and create a mind-set that helps us to say “no” to unhealthy eating, over-eating and negative thinking and say “yes” to feeling healthy and happy with whatever size or shape we are. One of the main reasons for weight gain is over eating when we are not truly hungry. Four Reasons why we eat are:
  1. Emotional
  2. Thirsty
  3. Tired
  4. Hungry
So we need to learn to listen to our bodies and ask ourselves “Am I really hungry or do I just want to change the way I feel?”  Try to satisfy the other 3 reasons before reaching for food. Cultivating healthy eating habits of only eating when you are truly hungry, eating slowly and consciously and to stop eating when we are full or nearly full. Eating slowly is key as it helps us to become fuller quicker, so we eat less and lose weight steadily and healthily. We can also program the mind for success by practising 3 positive daily habits: Relaxation – most people over eat when they are stressed. Reduce both by daily deep breathing practise:
  1. Close the eyes
  2. Breath in through the nose for the count of 4
  3. Breath out through the nose for the count of 5
  4. Repeat until fully relaxed
Visualisation – your thoughts are powerful and your actions will begin to align with your thoughts
  1. Close your eyes,
  2. Picture yourself at your ideal weight.
  3. Notice every part of your body, your face, your clothes
  4. See yourself on holiday; slimmer, healthier, happier.
  5. See it, feel it, believe it to be true NOW.
Affirmation – you become what you think about
  1. Try an affirmation such as “I am slim and healthy” or “I will be a size x by x” or “I am happy as I am”
  2. Repeat affirmation daily over and over until it becomes a dominating thought pattern.
  3. Say it, feel it, believe it to be true.
  4. Your actions will begin to align with your words and you will make healthier choices
Best of luck! Five simple tips to beat the weight gain:
  1. Drink more water – swap fizzy drinks during the day for water with a slice of lemon or lime
  2. Take a 1/3 off – be happy to leave some food on your plate especially if buffet eating
  3. Go easy on the alcohol – drink water during the day, save your alcohol calories for the evening
  4. Nutritious Swaps – opt for protein like boiled or scrambled eggs to fill you up at breakfast and stop any mid-morning cravings. For evenings add salads instead of bread, rice or chips.
  5. Think Positively – train yourself to focus on your best bits rather than the parts of your body you don’t like. Even if your hands or feet are the only things you like it’s better to think about how much you like them rather than feeding the negative thoughts about your belly or your bum!
Midlife Crisis is nothing to fear WHILE most of us associate a midlife crisis with 50-something men, latest research shows that our fast-paced lives are resulting in these phases happening much earlier; and women are just as likely to have them as men. A study by RIAS shows that the midlife crisis is now more of an issue for stressed-out 30-somethings.  One in four of the 2000 people surveyed in the research admitted to having a phase or midlife crisis, and the average age for this was 37. The most common drastic decision was quitting a job (36%), followed by moving home (24%) and deciding to travel (14%).  Stereotypical midlife crisis decisions, such as buying expensive cars (4%) or changing relationships (7%) were less common.  When asked about their motivation for such a change, the biggest reason people gave was feeling trapped or bored (38%). This phase of life lasted two years until the age of 39 and while most people realised at the time that their actions were drastic, 77% felt that they had made a positive impact on their lives. The research for Liverpool shows that adults are experiencing this phases in their lives even earlier than the national average, with 32% of adults in Liverpool admitting to having a midlife crisis at the average age of 33 and it lasting up to 7 years. From a personal point of view this does ring true with me, it was at the age of 33/34 when I decided to leave a 15-year stint in the corporate world and do something that I actually enjoyed for a living. As I approach my 40th birthday I finally feeling like I am on the right path in life, and that crisis phase at 33 now seems like a key part of my personal growth. A very wise person once said to me “keep changing as you just become closer to who you really are”. I have found this to be so true. In our fast-paced lives major, life-changing decisions are happening earlier as people choose to take a step back and re-evaluate what they want from life.  Experiences are taking priority over expensive purchases as people choose a better way of living for themselves. So maybe more of us should embrace a midlife crisis? What positive life changes will you make? Whether its midlife, early life or approaching the end of life, they are all days of our lives and the thing to do is really LIVE them!