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Weight loss process requires both physical and mental strength. Although losing weight can provide a sense of joy and confidence, getting back to healthy lifestyle and shape may be a battle. Without a positive outlook, the pressure to conform to a certain kind of person may cause obsessive thinking, excessive exercise routine and eating disorders.

Thus, before setting goals for weight loss, ensure that you have a self-care program to aid you in your weight loss journey.


The weight loss psychology works against you in some ways, though it can work for you in other ways. In order to get past your roadblock, you will first need to figure out specifically, what that roadblock is.

The psychology behind weight loss is a negative force in certain ways. However, it could work in your favor in other ways. To get over the obstacle, you will be able to pinpoint precisely the obstacle.

1.1. All-or-nothing Thinking

If you are in limbo between adhering to your healthy diet program perfectly or slipping off the track completely, it could be that you are experiencing the cognitive distortion known as all-or-nothing thinking.

Psychologists employ “cognitive distortion,” as they call it, to describe “cognitive distortion” to refer to a constant exaggeration of thoughts which are not in sync with what is happening within the actual world. People with a sense of all-or-nothing in their efforts to lose weight think they are either a complete success or a failure based on their diet choices.

Research has shown that an all-or-nothing mentality is closely associated with a rebellious attitude over food intake and an inability to keep an appropriate weight. Researchers have described this behavior as Jekyll and Hyde’s behavior.

Suppose you believe in all-or-nothing thinking and have difficulty returning to healthy eating habits after a little indulgence. Instead, you will likely abandon the plan and eat more food because you believe that your eating plan is in complete disarray.

1.2. Negative Body Image – Common psychological barrier

If you are trying to change your body’s dimension and form, you cannot be satisfied with the appearance of your body in its present state. Of course, there is no reason not to enhance your health and appearance. However, if your image of yourself is negative, it may affect your progress and lower your confidence.

Some people believe that the image of their body can be a sign of self-worth. Some people believe their worth of themselves is determined by their body shape, size or the food they consume.

This belief could cause problems with establishing healthy eating habits or reaching and keeping an ideal weight. Additionally, a negative image of your body is associated with unhealthy eating habits and other issues. Such psychological trap is quite popular and you need to be prepared to encounter.

People who are worried about the shape and weight of their bodies may also be embarrassed when they are in the public eye, avoiding activities due to self-consciousness and an excessive feeling of weight gain after eating. They might focus on foods low in calories instead of nutritious ones and may label food items as “good” or “bad”.

It needs to be clarified the extent to which a negative image of your body causes unhealthy eating or if eating habits that cause unhealthy eating lead to a negative image of your body. However, feeling dissatisfied about your body could hinder your progress towards getting to a healthy weight and, more importantly, harms your self-esteem and mental health.

1.3. Stress – Regular mental barrier during weight loss

There is a good reason for comfort food to get its name. Most people find that eating food is a pleasure. In times of stress, some use food as the most effective method to soothe their feelings. While this tactic is not unusual for individuals of all dimensions, it can cause issues if you are trying to shed weight or if food is your only way of dealing with stress.

In addition, it is not just eating too much that could be a problem. Food choices are more likely to change when experiencing anxiety. You not only consume more food when you are anxious but the food choices are usually avoided due to weight loss or health reasons.

Finally, your body releases more cortisol when stressed, which could cause weight gain. Many people trying to lose weight, however, are stressed. They might not see any change in their weight that is not related to their best efforts but more a result of the body’s reaction to stress. Stress is a significant psychological obstacle for those trying to lose weight or live a healthier lifestyle.

1.4. Depression

Researchers are not sure whether depression can cause weight gain or if it hinders weight loss. However, numerous scientists believe there is an association. In addition, even for normal-weight individuals, depression may cause problems relating to weight and your holistic health.

In some individuals, depression can cause an inability to eat or weight loss. Research suggests that simply the feeling of being overweight can cause psychological stress and could result in depression.

Sleeplessness and fatigue can make losing weight more difficult. Some commonly prescribed antidepressants may make you gain weight too. If you are suffering from depression, you must consult your physician or mental health professional.


There is a risk that people will be the subject of more scrutiny from other people and be under pressure to keep their weight. And also the fear of weight gain or perceived failure’. Body image distortions are likely as people try to adapt to their new body and weight. Because the importance a person attaches to their body image could be elevated and any change – whether real or imagined – can be increased.

In the worst-case scenario, rapid weight loss could be addictive and tip people into eating-disordered situation. An undiagnosed condition is called “atypical anorexia,” in which someone experiences similar starvation-related behaviors and mental distortions experienced by those suffering from anorexia but is not clinically overweight.

2.1. Weight loss can make one feel more vulnerable.

If you are obese with a larger body, it could provide a sense of psychological security and a feeling that you were able to hide your true identity. Psychologically speaking, it makes people feel like they cannot perceive who they are. The loss of this “fleshy protective barrier’ could make a person feel “exposed”.

2.2. Weight loss can trigger extreme anxiety and fear

Instead of elation of achievement, a person could become anxious about putting any weight back on after the goal is achieved. Fear can lead to anxiety and stress with every bite of food or lead people to eat less food that brings them pleasure or satisfaction. The pressure to keep up losing weight can be overwhelming if it is not handled promptly. 

In extreme instances, continuous cravings and restrictions could lead to eating disorders if someone is not vigilant. With the right help on one’s side, one can learn self-control without worrying that indulging in food could bring them back where they were.

2.3.Losing weight shines a light on an individual

As well as feelings of vulnerability, dramatic weight loss can result in much attention from people around you that might not be appreciated. Though comments about the changes in appearance could be positive and indicate appreciation of the achievement, they could make one feel even more exposed and vulnerable. The loss of this much weight is a major adjustment in many ways for the person who is concerned. 

Dealing with attention from other people in a manner that is not the same as your own, but at the same time, it can be a challenge and, at times, feel too personal for people to acknowledge. It also can be emotional for certain individuals once all the attention stops and the passing remarks cease to occur. Then, others get used to the new appearance and ignore the new look. 

One can also seek counsel to help prepare their mind for this psychological barrier during their weight loss journey.

2.4. Weight loss can trigger feelings of anger

If others observe an extreme physical change, this can cause some anger or annoyance. The positive comments you receive will not necessarily be positive. It might be difficult for a person to express gratitude to people who did not give them the respect they deserved prior to the time and are now making positive remarks or asking why the weight loss was attained. 

When you are learning to deal emotionally through physical transformations (outside appearance) could make one feel that people are superficial and shallow. Even if they are giving a person a positive impression after losing weight. Some have experienced negative comments, stating that they do not look healthy. Counseling can also assist individuals in recognizing that other people may have difficulty adapting to a “new” person or help in managing jealousy.

2.5. A dramatic weight loss could affect relationships

If you are already in a relationship, tension may arise when someone’s partner is overweight. Anyone who has experienced such an extreme change could wish their partner was the same, which can cause obstacles and conflicts inside the relationship or marriage. 

On the other hand, a spouse might have issues with self-esteem and be afraid or worried. A change in routines can cause tension among couples who previously had certain activities together, for example, meals or the time they spend not engaging in activities.

2.7. The dramatic loss of weight can make one feel self-centered.

A drastic change in your daily routine can be an overwhelming experience for the person experiencing the entire process. The person might not feel all unhappy about the changes they have endured, but they can find themselves lost in their thoughts. Although this is understandable, others (family, friends, colleagues) might not be as kind if they are taken too seriously.


One or more of the most common psychological obstacles to losing weight may be like the ones you have experienced. It is not uncommon to face multiple hurdles on your path to a healthy weight. However, these hurdles can help your progress.

Each of the advice and suggestions listed below could help you overcome many mental barriers. These are healthy ways to live a long and healthy life without negative side effects and are nearly free. Try one or two of these strategies.

3.1. Forget the numbers

Keeping track of your progress is beneficial to be accountable for your goals. But focusing on numbers could lead to a slippery slope. The numbers on an instrument are only sometimes precise to reflect the state of your health-related journey. They can cause anxiety when they are not what you expect to be seeing.

If you are looking to track your progress numerically, you can make a measurement and weigh yourself once per week. Your body’s weight can vary between six and six pounds per day, so a weigh-in every day will not provide a good gauge of your overall progress.

It is the same for tracking calories. While keeping track of your meals may be crucial in identifying trends, for example, what causes stomach upset, recording every calorie you take within and out can cause unhealthy limitations.

Instead of obsessing about numbers, listen to the signals of your body. Monitor your progress by keeping track of your moods and energy levels to determine what works for you.

3.2. Make small adjustments – An effective mental hack

If your mind is ruled by all-or-nothing, it stays on your healthy eating plan. Consider making small steps and setting goals for the short term. Start by identifying one healthy lifestyle change that is feasible and achievable. Remember that perfection is not the aim. More importantly, any attempt to push yourself to the right path is progress you can feel proud about.

You may prefer walking for 15 mins following dinner every day. Set a goal and focus on that goal for one week. If you are keeping a diary, note down your notes each day on the different ways that you have been able to keep the goal in mind. Give yourself credit. Remember that even a consistent tiny action is far better than an enormous one-time action.

Making small changes can assist you in making only a few changes at a time. It is difficult to feel overwhelmed when you make too many changes quickly and become discouraged. However, it is a good idea to implement a small improvement with the result. You will be able to feel satisfaction that will motivate you to continue.

3.3. Get assistance from psychology professionals if you can not overcome psychological barriers by yourself

Some experts are trained to address depression, past traumas, and other issues that may stand against successfully losing weight. There is an expert in behavioral health that is adept at treating the root emotional reasons for excessive eating and weight growth.

Your doctor can give you an appointment. If you cannot, there are alternative options to connect with the right psychotherapist. If your situation prevents you from seeking a behavioral health professional, consider one of the new apps or tools for technology which offer mental health counseling through text messages, Skype, or Facetime. These services typically provide relief at a lower cost than face-to-face counseling.

3.4. Make sure you check in with yourself

Time moves quickly. It is easy to let the day slip lost, particularly when you have to manage your working and family life with fitness and eating. Make sure you pause for a moment to take some slow deep breaths and get in touch with your feelings. Reviewing your feelings can help you know what you require and the emotional capacity you need to finish tasks. This activity will assist you in having a more efficient and less stressful day.

There are many creative ways to monitor yourself, including writing down your thoughts or jotting them in a calendar. If you find that writing down your thoughts does not work for you, try mindful activities such as meditation to help you focus and calm.

Here are some questions to help get you to get started:

Am I looking forward to working out and eating well? Do I feel overwhelmed?

What am I feeling today? What is my body feeling today?

What are the things I am most proud of this week?

Who do I rely on for support?

3.5. Prioritize Sleep Habits

Researchers have repeatedly found that sleep habits are linked to as well as weight gain in addition to unhealthy eating behaviors. Thus, one of the easiest and most relaxing ways to overcome psychological obstacles is to alter sleep routines.

Make sure you go to bed at the same hour every evening, get up at the same hour each morning, and create a peaceful sleeping bed. Take away any electronic devices (television and computer, as well as the cellphone charger) and take as many steps as possible to reduce the noise.

Purchase a dark-blocking drape or a cheap sleep mask, so you are completely dark at night. Some individuals also lower the thermostat to help promote restful sleep.

3.6. Find out what works for you.

Legally Blonde’s Elle Woods was not lying – exercise does release endorphins, and these endorphins will bring you joy. However, you should enjoy your workout routines at the beginning as well. Find something you enjoy, whether it’s yoga, cycling, weight training or dancing. If you are a fan of the routine, it is much easier to commit to it long-term.

It is also true of your diet, which is essential to the success of a weight loss program. A healthy diet free of processed food items, added salt, and simple sugars like the Paleo Diet – is the ideal start. Try new recipes every week until you have an eating plan suitable for your tastes, overall health, and routine.

My general rule is that if your weight-loss diet plan causes you to feel anxious or frustrated, it is likely to be ineffective. Find something you love, and the outcomes will be there.

3.7. Make sure you take a break from social media

Social media can be a double-edged weapon. It has the potential to bring people closer together. However, it could be detrimental to self-esteem. While no one’s life is ideal as it appears on the internet, it is easy to compare to others. Refraining from social media can make you less stressed and more productive and focused on your needs.

You can reduce your time scrolling if you are not ready to go on a complete social media break. Remove yourself from any accounts that cause you to feel self-conscious, and switch them to ones that inspire you. Find individuals who are open about their weight loss journeys or issues with their body image. When you discover an account you can identify, you will not feel as alone on your weight loss journey.

3.8. Listen to your Self-Talk

Are you paying at all times for the messages you broadcast to yourself during the day? These thoughts that are constant throughout the day could create a blockage to your well-being.

People prone to the negative image of their body might be prone to repeating negative thoughts about it all day. The phrases like “I’m so fat” or “I am so out of shape” spoken loudly and in the back of your mind could make it difficult for you to improve your health whenever an opportunity arises. These negative self-talks can be big psychological barriers.

Self-talk is another method by which an all-or-nothing mentality can take over. For instance, you could be tempted to beat yourself up for not meeting unreasonable, excessive standards or goals you have set for yourself.

Spend a few days or weeks observing your inner dialogue. Please choose one or two thoughts that could favor a negative self-image and note them down. Then, you can challenge them or change these messages using a powerful phrase. The phrases like “my body is strong,” “I am enough,” or “I have come a long way” are all mantras which are often employed to increase confidence.

3.9. Learn Relaxation Techniques

If you cannot avoid individuals or locations that trigger stress, relaxing techniques can be a good option for controlling your stress-related emotions.

Researchers have found that a particular relaxation method known as guided imagery may aid weight loss.7 It is possible to consult with a therapist to learn how to use guided imagery, but you can learn it yourself. It can take some time to master the technique, but it could provide the greatest strategy to lose weight when your mood is causing you to overeat when you are stressed.

3.10. Give yourself a treat

Please take a moment to get rid of the idea of all-or-nothing. A healthy lifestyle is all about being in balance. We at The Paleo Diet(r) adhere to the 85/15 rule that says 95 per cent of the time, you must eat organic, healthy whole food. Though eating your favorite non-paleo foods for 15 percent of the time will not be enough to harm your health.

In other words, expect you to be flawless only sometimes. It is not just that life happens, and you will resent your weight loss goals when you are not living your life. Feel free to indulge in dessert. Just get back on track with your diet on the following day.


If you are having trouble losing weight, one of these mental obstacles could be the cause. It is also possible that your body is in a healthy weight range and weight loss is unnecessary. Therefore, consider evaluating the reason you believe losing weight is important.

If you think weight loss is necessary, take advantage of the psychology behind weight loss process to benefit you instead of against you. Find out why the roadblock or “wall” is in place, Then take steps to obtain the support you require to achieve and keep an appropriate weight. 

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