A mantra is a phrase that is repeated either out loud or silently to yourself with the goal of helping you achieve something. In other words, a mantra is a positive way to verbalize what you want. In the case of losing weight, an inspirational mantra can help keep you on track and focused on positive rather than negative thoughts.
Always state your mantras in the present tense. So instead of affirming that “I will be able to fit into size 6 clothes in a few months,” say “I look great in my size 6 outfits.” You can either use very specific mantras like the previous example or you can say something more general like “All my clothes fit perfectly on my beautiful, thin body.” You can even be more general by saying “Not only do I look good and feel great but I am also healthy and fit with lots of energy.”
According to cognitive psychology, we create the problems we experience in life because we believe things that aren’t true. For example, you might believe that you don’t have the willpower to be successful on a diet. However, you can counter this cognitive challenge by affirming “I have been able to stick to my diet for 21 days, and I can continue to do so.” You might also believe that you can’t stand being hungry. You could overcome this thought by saying “My hunger is only temporary, and I can eat something healthy like a piece of fruit or some raw vegetables to feel better.” Another common problem dieters have is the idea that they can’t stick with a diet for a long period of time. To combat this thought, simply say to yourself that you only have to eat this way for today. Use this same affirmation every day, and you will be able to stick with your diet for the rest of your life.
If people only ate when they were hungry, most wouldn’t have any trouble with their weight. However, people often eat because they are bored or stressed, and therefore gain weight that they don’t need. Mantras are very effective in helping people calm down and deal with the real problem rather than eating for comfort. When you are feeling bored, try saying to yourself “I’m bored, but I’m not going to eat. Instead I’m going to _____.” You can fill in the blank with anything you want: call a friend, read a book, go for a walk, etc. Do something you enjoy to relieve your boredom other than eat. If you are feeling insecure, say to yourself “I am safe and secure, and I don’t need to eat to make myself feel better.” Maybe you’re upset with a co-worker. Instead of eating to numb your feelings (which won’t solve the problem anyway), try talking to the person and working out your differences.
Other Effective Mantras
Besides the ones already mentioned, you can try the following simple, yet effective, mantras to help you in your weight loss quest. One is simply to say “I can and will lose weight.” Another is “I will stick with my diet.” Yet another effective one is “Fattening food doesn’t taste as good and being slender feels.” You can also try “I am in total control of my life and choose to make healthy eating choices,” and “I can achieve my weight loss goals one day at a time.”
More than positive self talk, a mantra can actually change your thinking and belief system. Once those are changed, your life can also be transformed. Not only can you be thinner, you can also have the positive self image that you have wanted your whole life.