Surviving Setbacks After Bariatric Surgery
By Barbara Brathwaite, RN, MSN
All or nothing thinking: “I am a total success in my meal plan or a total failure.”
Black or white thinking: “I ate those cookies so I may as well forget healthy eating.”
Do it perfectly or not at all thinking: “I am either perfect or a total failure.”
All or nothing thinking, and black and white thinking, and perfectionist thinking can get us into trouble. They will sabotage any plan for change. There are gray areas! If we slip up, we can forgive ourselves and get back up.
Many times when we are trying to change an old behavior that is unhealthy, we are really hard on ourselves if it is not done perfectly. We may feel defeated and worthless and want to give up. This way of thinking may push us to go back to our old unhealthy, comforting behaviors such as emotional eating. We have to turn off those negative tapes and think realistically. Focus on the positives with acceptance and compassion and the healthy behaviors will follow. We are not perfect. We all make mistakes. Acceptance of our human imperfections and loving ourselves will provide the nurturing necessary to start again. Believe in yourself. You’ve done it before. You can do it again. Instead of giving up after a setback, start anew the next day.
Remember: being involved in support groups helps ensure you stay on the right track. Connecting with others involved in weight loss provides information, understanding and accountability. We may fall off the track occasionally but those who are involved and have support get back on the track faster and tend to stay on the track.