How many times have you fallen into the weight-loss routine of stepping on the scale, writing down EVERYTHING you eat and restricting a long list of foods?
According to Jason Lillis, PhD, a leading researcher in acceptance-based therapy working in the field of obesity, this is the traditional approach to weight-loss — and it usually falls apart over time. In fact, more than 50 percent of “diets” fail when people “fall off the wagon.”
Acceptance-based Therapy and YWM2019
If the traditional approach fails so many, what else is there? At the Obesity Action Coalition’s (Producer of the Your Weight Matters Campaign) Your Weight Matters Convention & EXPO coming to Tampa, FL this August 1-3, Dr. Jason Lillis will present his research on acceptance-based therapy as an alternative approach to tradition that is growing with proven success rates.
Since May is Mental Health Awareness Month, we wanted to highlight this greatly anticipated session at YWM2019 and remind you that this is a topic you CAN’T MISS!
What is Acceptance-based Therapy?
In a diet culture that tells you it doesn’t matter how you lose the weight (as long as you lose it), acceptance-based therapy challenges you to ask yourself:
- Why are you really trying to lose weight?
- What is deeply and personally meaningful about weight-loss to you?
In a nutshell, this approach to weight control aims to connect healthy behaviors with what you value. For example, maybe you want more energy to play with your grand kids or improve your work performance with greater concentration. Maybe you want a more vibrant relationship with your spouse. The idea is that tuning in to your values will help you make lifestyle changes vs. quick fixes so you stick to your goals without losing steam or motivation.
Breaking the Destructive Thought Cycle
Another reason it’s so hard to keep weight off is because we self-sabotage. Society tells us that obesity is one of the worst traits a person can have and that it’s 100 percent in your personal control. However, research shows that shaming FUELS unhealthy behaviors – it doesn’t prevent it. As a result, we acquire nasty thoughts about ourselves such as:
- “I’m disgusting so I’ve got to change”
- “Weight-loss will make me happier”
- “If I could just lose the weight, so many of my problems will disappear.”
Dr. Lillis calls this the “Fix Me Trap” because weight-loss isn’t always a magical solution. Acceptance-based Therapy aims to give people a different experience with their thoughts by slowing down the brain, allowing emotions to run their course vs suppressing them, and encouraging them to lean on their values to make it through the rough spots.
It also emphasizes body appreciation that leads to self-care. For example: Dr. Lillis urges patients to close their eyes in a quiet space and imagine all the different parts and functions of their body, like their lungs and eyes, taking time to appreciate the details. Traditionally we’re taught to see our bodies as the enemy, but this perspective is self-destructive. Acceptance-based therapy flips the switch and strengthens the relationship you have with yourself.
Learn More at YWM2019
Want to learn more about acceptance-based therapy for weight control? Register Now for OAC’s Your Weight Matters Convention & EXPO this August 1-3 in Tampa! Dr. Lillis will present his research among many other experts and give you practical, refreshing tools to help you in your weight management journey. Don’t miss this groundbreaking education!