For many of us who struggle with our weight we are stuck in what feels like a never ending loop.

I call this loop The Struggle Cycle, and it looks like this….

Stage 1 – I’m fat and I need something to fix me stat!

I’ve reached the point where I can’t stand myself any longer.

This point has been triggered by either my fat pants no longer fitting, or being tagged in a fat photo, or reaching ‘that’ number on the scales.

Stage 2 – I’ve found the solution!

I’ve signed up for the latest diet, 12 week challenge, or fad.

Stage 3 – Let’s do this!

I print out the program, clean out my pantry, and buy all the food from my list. Buy new exercise gear. Tell all my friends and family that ‘this is it’ (and ignore their eye rolls).

Stage 4 – Ugggh this is tricky.

I don’t like any of this food. I hate getting up to exercise at 5am.

Stage 5 – This sucks.

The program that not long ago was going to be THE solution, now sucks. I hate it. I’m too tired, I’m hungry, I feel deprived, I will just have one chocolate, next minute I’m power munching chocolate while bingeing on netflix.

Stage 6 – I suck.

I throw in the towel and eat with abandon. What’s the point? I just can’t do it.

Until I get tagged in another fat photo, reach ‘that number’ on the scales, or get sick of myself and so I start back again on stage 1.

Abbreviated to….

I’m fat. What can fix me?
I’ve found the solution!
Let’s do this
Ugggh this is tricky!
This sucks
I suck

Back to step 1.

The key to breaking out of the struggle cycle, is realising that the ‘I suck’ moment isn’t a failure at all. It’s needed for us to realise that the solution to our weight loss isn’t anything to do with the external ‘stuff’ like diet and exercise. Instead it’s our own inner work.

So reaching Stage 6 ‘I suck’ isn’t the time to start over. It’s the very point you need to be at to pivot from being stuck in the same old cycle over and over again to making true progress.

The self sabotage cycle happens when we keep looking externally for the result. When we finally realise ‘I suck’ is actually the point where we stop looking outside for answers and start looking within, then we start to make true progress.

From Stage 6 ‘I suck’ if we are persistent we move into the success cycle.

Stage 7 – Imperfect action

Even though I feel like I suck because I am not doing it perfectly, I keep showing up and taking persistent and consistent imperfect action.

Stage 8 – Keep going

The results may not be coming ‘fast enough’ and I may slip up from time to time, but I ‘stay in the room’ and keep going.

Stage 9 – I’m making progress

What if we gain too much weight ourselves because we give too much help to others?

You may be thinking surely it can’t be that simple. It must be because I eat too much, or exercise too little, or don’t have enough willpower.

But if it was one of those things, surely you wouldn’t still be stuck here. You’ve addressed all those aspects before, yet here you are.

In order to achieve something we never have, we have to do something we’ve never done.

So I invite you to open up to the idea that the reason you’re carrying excess weight is not about the food or the exercise or anything external. But about what’s going on internally, you’re overgiving tendencies.

Overgiving is central.

It has become a cycle that is so second nature that you don’t even realise you are stuck in a loop.

Every overgiver who wants to lose weight knows what to do, they just don’t do it.


Because whenever someone needs their help, they drop all of their plans to take care of others.

What is overgiving?

Next article – What DOESN’T Work to Lose Weight

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