“It is good to have an end to journey toward, but it is the journey that matters in the end.” – Ursula K. Le Guin
When you’re working hard to manage your weight, the number on the scale can sometimes feel like your biggest obstacle. If weight-loss is one of your goals, watching the number continue to drop might seem like you’ve just won an Olympic gold medal. On the other hand, if the number doesn’t budge or even increases, this can sometimes feel like a significant step backwards in the wrong direction.
A Look Back at Your Goals
In times like these, it’s important to remember that managing your weight and health is a journey. When you started, you likely set out with a few goals in mind – and you probably had a list of things you wanted to change, including:
- Increased energy
- Pain reduction
- Increased physical capacity
- Lowered disease risk
- Improvement in health vitals
While these are all good intentions, let’s be honest for a moment. For many of us, the specific number we see on the scale carries more significance than we would like. And, if we’re not careful, we assign power to this number. Consequentially, our weight begins to affect our feelings of value and self-worth.
Does this really sound like you’re making the most out of your journey with weight and health?
As noted on Dictionary.com, the definition of progress is as follows:
- A movement toward a goal or to a further or higher stage.
- Advancement in general.
- Growth or development; continuous improvement.
The trick here is to know with confidence that there are many different ways to make progress, and that a number on the scale does not define your success. Remember, your exact weight does not always reflect factors such as muscle mass, body composition or positive lifestyle changes. A number is simply a number!
Instead, while navigating your way through the weight management journey, always be sure to take time each week for a bit of deeper reflection. When all has been said and done, it’s important to focus on all your positive highlights! Give yourself a round of applause if you’ve made strides in any area, including:
- Building healthy, sustainable nutrition habits to fuel your body
- Challenging and rewarding your body with exercise
- Trying a new, healthy recipe or physical activity
- Noticing a positive change in the way your clothes fit
- Noticing increased energy/less fatigue
- Seeing your health vitals improve
- Making time for self-care
Your weight management journey means that you’re on the road to improving and maintaining your health, and that looks different for everybody – with and without the scale!