Psychological Warfare

I seem to be on a blogging binge! Three posts in three days – what?!? Let’s just roll with, shall we? 🙂

We’ve all seen a “Benefits of Weight Loss” or “Benefits of Exercise” list before either here on the internet or in a magazine or possibly even at your local gym. I like these lists because they remind me of the good things that can happen when I drop some pounds or go for a walk. And as helpful as these lists are, I find that I need to dial it down even further. While I completely understand that losing excess weight can help lower blood pressure, increase self esteem, manage diabetes, manage heart disease, and make your clothes fit better, knowing this doesn’t necessarily help me in the moment

I need more than that. I need a “Benefits of Not Eating This Junk Food Right Now” list. This is where it counts – where I will make or break my plan, because when I am holding the cookie in my hand or eyeing my daughter’s trick or treat bag, I need to know the psychological benefits of not giving in. From where I’m standing, the benefit of eating the cookie or candy bar is that I get to EAT CHOCOLATE RIGHT NOW. I need to  know what I’m going to get if I don’t eat the chocolate or chips or whatever. I need to know how not eating the (insert junk food of choice here) is going to make me feel better right now and for the next 60 seconds of my life. I need an on-the-spot intervention.

Since there doesn’t seem to be a list like this in existence, I guess I’ll have to make one up. Here’s what I’ve got so far: 

The Benefits of Not Eating That Junk Food Right Now

  • You can put the offending food down and walk away like an action hero walking away from an explosion.
  • Your future self will not want to come back in a time machine and punch you in the face.
  • Your “NO” muscle will get some much needed exercise. 
  • You will be that much hungrier for your next meal which means it will taste that much more awesome.


That’s all I’ve got, and that’s not enough, so I need your help now. What would you add to the list, and make sure it is something that will be beneficial in that moment. I’m not looking for a how-to; things like “go for a walk” don’t help me when I’m completely zeroed in on a fun-size Milky Way. If we get enough suggestions, I’ll put the complete list in another post all its own for all the world to see. You’ve got all weekend to ponder this, so ponder away and hopefully on Monday I’ll have enough to post an entire list. 

We need this, folks. This could be a mighty tool in our collective weight-loss tool boxes, don’t ya think? 🙂

Happy Weekend!


12 thoughts on “Psychological Warfare

  1. Giving up on the junk food now is a step towards the fabulous self you want to be ,it is a secret answer to all those out there you can never reach your goal ,

  2. I hear you! I keep telling myself I should wear one of my daughter’s hair elastics around my wrist and flick it, causing pain, whenever I go to grab something that won’t help me get to any sort of goal. I’ve been telling people for years that I need SOMETHING that will prevent me from grabbing it, because a lot of times I just don’t think about the consequences and I just mindlessly grab it. Of course WW tells us that tracking would fix this – if you had to write it down it would help. But of course my rationale is, yeah, sure, I can track all my food but there is nothing to STOP me from going over my points. I could eat 4 candy bars and track it – does that mean that I am not going to have dinner that night because I’ve eaten all my 49 points and my daily points. Hell no! So what would stop me? The thought of weighing in at WW does help. Tomorrow is my weigh-in day and I am up, but wanting to see the scale be as little as possible in the morning is keeping me from getting on a step-stool and devouring the kids halloween candy (I WFH on Friday’s – very challenging!)

    Wish I could be more help – I am still figuring it out too!

  3. Yours are better, but here’s a little one that helps me ONLY if I’m having a pretty good day already. There is no way I will eat one cookie or one piece of Halloween contraband. If I have one, I will have four. So I ask myself whether I really want four cookies. I’m probably thinking that I can get away with sneaking one but I know that four will make me not feel so great. So I say something like, “Self, remember that one bite, even one tiny bite, will lead to four whole ones. Really want to do that?” Usually I don’t and then I can walk away knowing that I really do NOT want that.

  4. For me, the saying no in the moment doesn’t produce the payoff, but I feel pretty kick-butt the next morning. 🙂

    How about “I’m worth more than this food is.”
    Or “BAWF is watching me…”

  5. I’m of no help right now. I do like your list, though. I’m going to cut and paste it to myself (as in an email to myself, although attaching it directly to myself might actually help).

    “I need an on-the-spot intervention.” — Oh, yes. I need the “Sassy Gay Friend” to come in and ask me, “What, what, WHAT are you doing?” and then snatch it away from me.

  6. Maybe thinking about how incredibly virtuous you will feel?

    I read a futuristic short story about someone who had a “personal trainer” chip implanted, programmed to improve their race times. Turned out having a really strict personal trainer who was actually able to inflict pain if you didn’t obey wasn’t such a great idea after all… But one day it will probably be available, an implant that gives you a nasty shock if you eat chocolate or haven’t done your 10,000 steps.

  7. Good thoughts, Ladies!! I thought of another one: If I don’t eat xyz right now, I won’t be flooding my system with trash chemicals that will make me feel awful in a half hour.

  8. Well, you said I had all weekend to think about it! You got some great suggestions. You KNOW that you are not going to eat one piece when you start. Especially when you are sitting right next to an endless supply of the stuff.

    One thing that helped me a LOT was an article in the Nutrition Action Healthletter (I still think you should subscribe to that!) It described a study where they found that people’s arteries were constricting AS THEY ATE a hamburger. That scares the daylights out of me. As I said in my last comment–not a big fan of the STROKE.

    1. Oh wow. That’s a really excellent one Debs!! It’s for sure going on the list (which I will probably put up tomorrow because I want to see if anyone else has anything to add today).

  9. May have missed your deadline…but this one has been working for me lately. Put down whatever your trying not to eat and say “This I do for me!!” It is a strong statement of love for myself!

    1. Brilliant! I’m working on the list even as we speak (er, type) so I will add it! Thank you!

      (Jilly is the name my family calls me – nice to meet another Jilly!)

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