I’ve lost a lot of weight lately and I wanted to share with you my point of view on how to lose weight and keep it off permanently by simply changing three lifestyle habits. Many people think that if they change the way they eat they’ll lose weight and keep it away forever. In many cases, all those crazy diets are not sustainable and many find that a few months later they gain whatever they lost. I want to share my point of view with you and hopefully inspire and empower you to look at this weight loss business a little bit differently.
The other day, I was sitting in the library working on this blog of mine. It’s a tiny library… A one-room thing, five minutes drive from my house, in the middle of the country on an intersection of two main roads.
Usually, it’s only me and the librarian there, but that day the guy who drives the books between the libraries in the county stepped in and they started talking about all kinds of diets.
I am a homesteader… I try to grow as much food as I can and I try teaching as many people as I can how to do the same and live a healthy lifestyle. So excuse me but I listened in. I couldn’t help myself. And besides, it’s a one-room library so…
They were talking about the Keto diet, the Paleo diet, that diet where you buy a whole supply of monthly meals that you pop into the microwave (I don’t remember the name of that one…), and on and on trying so hard to figure out which one was the best one they’ve done and the best one to try next.
I am from Israel. And in Israel, we don’t shut up. If we have something to say we say it whether you want to hear it or not. It’s awful sometimes but most of the time you know that people do it because they care about you… Like as part of their family.
I had it burning in me to join the conversation but I’ve learned a thing or two since I came to the U.S. so I tried very hard to be polite and keep my nose out of other people’s business.
How to Lose Weight and Keep it Off Permanently
Anyway, I went home that day but my mind stayed occupied with the conversation the librarian and the guy were having. Mainly with the fact that after all the kinds of diets they tried in the past, they were still overweight and nothing much changed. They were able to keep the diet going for a while but then went back to their old ways.
So since I can’t hold it in any longer I am going to let the Israeli in me win and shout it: YOU ARE LOOKING AT THIS WEIGHT LOSS BUSINESS ALL WRONG!
Thank you for listening, my dear readers. I appreciate it very much.
Growing up, I’ve always eaten whatever I wanted. Our diet at home was full of vegetables and fruits and my mother always cooked everything from scratch, but even though it was relatively healthy, there were still many sweets and baked goods (if you ever visit Israel I dare you to step inside a bakery. You’ve never seen a thing like that before and chances are you’ll never want to leave).
Riding horses most of my childhood and later becoming a fitness trainer in the Navy, I was a very active person. No matter what I ate, it all evaporated through my skin, or so it seemed.
But something changes when you grow up. Your metabolism slows down a bit and life gets crazy usually not in a healthy way. Suddenly you’re eating cookies for breakfast even if it doesn’t make sense.
Now, you have to sit in front of the computer nine hours a day to work so you can pay the bills. You get home and need to care for your kids, there are meals to try and put on the table, a marriage to sustain, parents who need help, house to care for, yard to clean and mow, homework, cleaning, shopping and on and on…
Somehow, YOU move to the back of the list of things that need attention.
I have four kids and after every child 10 lb seemed to join my existence permanently. No matter how active I was in my homestead life, those pounds were stubbornly stuck to my sides and it seemed like they were going to stay there forever.
What’s Your Reason For Not Losing Weight?
At some point, I started feeling uncomfortable with my body. I wasn’t trying to impress anyone, I wasn’t trying to fit into a bikini. Maybe I wasn’t “fat” according to society’s standards, but I was overweight and I was uncomfortable…
I just wanted to feel good again. I wanted it to be easy to move as it used to be when I was younger, I wanted to feel light and flexible, I wanted to not breathe hard from simply climbing a flight of stairs.
If you’re reading this, I believe you understand what I’m talking about. Maybe you’ve struggled with your weight your whole life, maybe you gained those extra few pounds after each pregnancy, or maybe you gained weight because of a health issue you are struggling with.
Maybe you are a 100 lb overweight or maybe you are 15 lb overweight. Perhaps you are busy blaming your mama for serving you boxed meals as a child or possibly you feel powerless because you believe it’s your genes doing this to you.
It may be that you believe that nothing can change because you have to keep taking a medication to treat a certain condition and that medication messes with your appetite and metabolism, or maybe you believe that you are doomed for at least the next few years because you have little kids, you want a few more, and there is hardly time to pee in peace.
Or, most likely, you’ve tried a few diets and you feel like you failed because nothing much changed.
Whatever it is, whatever you are telling yourself, it doesn’t matter; it really is all the same. And if you are a 100 lb overweight or 15 lb overweight the way to lose those extra pounds will be the same.
How I Lost Weight…
I want to share my way and my belief with you. You can take it or leave it, but I ask you two things…
First… Be open and listen. Some of it might be too spiritual for you and that’s fine, but I ask you to just be open to a different opinion.
Second… Give yourself a freaking break. Stop looking for what’s wrong and from this moment on start looking for what’s right. We’ll talk about this more in a minute, but for now, I ask you to just chill. Stop being so hard on yourself…just stop it.
We are going to talk about all this because we want to find a way to make our body feel better to US. And NOT because something is awfully wrong with it and we gotta fix it.
Let me tell you, there is nothing to fix. You are beautiful, you are awesome, you are who you are and it’s good enough. Nothing really has to change for any other reason besides your INSPIRED desire to care for the physical body that carries you around this physical world so YOU can feel better.
Many people, when thinking about weight loss, look at the physical state of their body. They concentrate solely on changing what they eat and expect that one change to produce results.
It might produce results, but I am here to tell you that unless you change your habits and the way you think, those results won’t last long. Don’t look at this as a diet, look at this as a joyful journey to a whole and happier you.
In the past few months, I’ve done just that and let me tell you, it’s hard work. But I know for certain that if I, a single mother with four home-schooled kids, a homestead, and a business to run can do this, you can too.
The Moment I Said Screw it All!
For a very long time, even though I wanted to feel better, lose weight, and feel stronger, I allowed conditions around me to keep me where I was.
I was in a relationship that kept me low and slow for too many years and I was tired. I was exhausted of always trying to satisfy someone else, I was tired of the constant effort of explaining myself, I was tired of always feeling like I am not good enough. I was tired physically and I was tired mentally.
I was, for so many years, putting myself last and it showed on my body and my physical and mental health.
Until one day I said screw it. It was time for me to take care of myself. It was time to take responsibility for my feelings, my body, my time, and MY journey here on earth. No one else is responsible for me, there is no one else to blame, this is my life and I needed to take the control back.
So much has changed in the past year and a half. I am now going through the process of divorce, I am back to my weight before I had my four kids, my body is stronger, my mind is so much more focused, I operate on 6 hours of sleep every night and I run a homestead and a business while homeschooling my kids.
I feel as if I’m bragging but it’s really not what I mean to do. There is so much more for me to work on, but for the first time in a very long time, I feel in control of my thoughts and body.
I want to share this with you in hopes that this information will empower and inspire you. NOTHING needs to change in your environment in order for you to change the way you look at things. I didn’t start this shift in my life by removing myself from where I was. It all started by deliberately changing my focus and the three habits that we’ll go over below and by making the decision to care for myself. From there everything started rolling like a snowball.
Wayne Dyer said: “when you change the way you look at things the things you look at change”. I don’t know if there is a truer statement in the whole universe.
You don’t need to leave a nasty relationship in order to be happy, you don’t need to quit the job that you hate in order to do what you’re passionate about, and you certainly don’t have to find a new body in order to live a healthier lifestyle in a body you adore.
With the willingness to do the work, living a healthier lifestyle in a body you love is as sure a thing as the sun rising tomorrow.
You Don’t have to Drink Kumbacha and Eat Sprouts All Day…
You’ll see in a minute that I am not a fanatic when it comes to health food. I am not going to tell you to drink kombucha all day and eat only sprouts and nuts.
Honestly, I love pizza, french fries, hot dogs, hamburgers, and cakes and cookies. And you want to know another thing? I smoke about 3 cigarettes a day because I love the smoke, it’s relaxing for me.
I believe in balance. Enjoy it all. Take care of your mind (comfort food and such…) and your body (the sprouts and nuts part…). You’ll see that the changes I list below are gentle. My goal is not to help you drop 10 lb in a week. Sorry. I am pretty sure that you’ll be gaining those back pretty quick.
My goal is to inspire you to work on changing a few habits that will make you feel better, sleep better, breathe better, eat better, move better, and poop better (did I just say that!?). My wish is that you’ll be able to be consistent enough until those changes become your new habits.
Then, everything else will follow… Weight loss included.
Support Your Health With Essential Oils…
Before we go over the three habits, I want to mention the use of essential oils. I’ve been using doTERRA essential oils for years and think that everyone should use them. It’s just so simple to support your health naturally with doTERRA that I see no reason to turn anywhere else.
A few weeks ago, someone in our essential oils Facebook group shared a metabolism blend she was using. She stated that in addition to many other health benefits she noticed she was starting to lose weight without any change to her diet after starting with this blend.
It started a whole gigantic snowball on Facebook and people decided to try it. One of the doTERRA founders came out and said that that blend of oils is powerful in improving and supporting healthy metabolism and that weight loss is just a by-product of it. I decided to try it too and I share my experience with you in my post How to Boost Metabolism Naturally With Essential Oils.
I want you to please check that post after you read this one because even though I’ve already lost a lot of weight by following the changes below, I saw an even bigger improvement after I started following the essential oils protocol. I believe that if I had done it from the beginning I would have lost weight much faster.
3 Habits You Must Change in Order to Lose Those Extra Pounds…
Change the way you think – first and foremost, change the way you think about yourself and your body.
What do you see when you look in the mirror? Do you see fat under your skin or do you see beautiful skin that protects you from the harsh sun.
Do you see fat arms or do you see arms and hands that can drive you around, write, pick up stuff, hug your kids?
Do you see an ugly face or do you see eyes that can see, a nose that can smell, a mouth that allows you to eat and drink so you can stay here?
Do you see a body you wish was someone else’s or do you see a body you appreciate and want to love on? Do you see a body you want to take care of? Are you thankful for this vehicle you received or are you mean and disrespectful to it?
I know your mama taught you how to respect others, you won’t go up to someone and tell them they are ugly, yet so many of us do it daily to ourselves.
Remember that when you change the way you look at things the things you look at change. LOVE ON YOURSELF. All. Day. Long.
Appreciate your body and look for ways to show this appreciation. Speak nicely to yourself and to your body always, practice noticing the positive aspects and ignoring the negative. When a negative thought comes up, deliberately choose to distract yourself from it and choose something positive to think about (even if it has nothing to do with your body. You can think about how beautiful the sunrise was this morning).
I can talk about this topic for hours and I’d love to connect with you 1:1 and help you along if you’d like but for now, I’ll leave you with two names that will help you with mindset (which is the name of the game for anything you want to do in life).
The first name (and the one that changed my life) is Abraham Hicks. The second is Wayne Dyer.
Head over to Google or YouTube after you finish reading this post, type these names in and see what comes up (you can also search something like “Abraham Hicks weight loss” if you want to be specific to this topic).
This is so important, my friends. More important than anything else you’ll do.
Change the way you eat – you’ll find seven million opinions here. My opinion is… Find balance.
Here are a few simple rules to follow…
Keep it simple – look for simple recipes that don’t take much time to put together and don’t use hard-to-get ingredients.
Think raw and whole – choose real, raw, and whole foods. Use butter, not shortening. Use whole (brown) rice instead of white rice. Choose whole wheat bread instead of white and so on.
Think many small portions – instead of eating a few large meals, eat many small ones during the day.
Stay away from the soda aisle – I know I emphasize on balance and enjoying everything but here I don’t balance much. There is no soda in my house. Period. Not even when guests are coming (unless it’s my parents. They drink soda and when they come from Israel to the U.S. to visit they also pay for the groceries so I let it go).
If you need a sweet drink, make ice tea sweetened with honey or agave, or grab an orange juice or apple juice from the refrigerator at the grocery store. The only time we drink soda is when we eat out.
Stay away from the frozen aisles – the only two things I can think about in the frozen section at the grocery store that you might want to look for are ice cream and frozen peas. Other than that, you got nothing to look for in there. Forget about frozen meals, you better go eat sand at the beach, it’ll be much healthier.
Cook it yourself – for the life of me, I can not understand why someone would buy stuff like instant mashed potato flakes in a box! You can argue and say that it’s faster to make mashed potatoes this way, I’m saying what’s the rush? Where are you in a hurry to?
You can say that they say that they dry the potatoes in a way that they don’t lose their nutritional value… I say, bullshit. Every time you take raw food and do something with it you lose some of its nutritional value. And if it needs to sit on the shelf for a loooooooong time, you can be sure something not so good was done to it even if the box doesn’t say it.
I am not saying it’s all bad, what I am saying is if you can take raw ingredients and cook them yourself it will always be better for you (if you can grow them yourself even better). Throwing a few potatoes in a pot of water is really simple. Cook it yourself and try to stay away from boxed food.
Eat a lot of vegetables – I say, eat raw vegetables with almost every meal. There should be a salad there with your dinner. There should be a plate of vegetables there next to your eggs at breakfast (I know this concept might be hard for many Americans to grasp…), and there should be baby carrots or sliced cucumbers with your sandwich at lunch.
You need these vegetables in order to move your digestive system. They are so important. And do me a favor, stay away from all the white dressings, will ya? Anything white is bad. Replace ranch dressings with balsamic vinaigrette, or mix olive oil, mustard, lemon juice, and honey in a jar and use that. Or just season your salad with salt, olive oil, and lemon juice (this is how we eat our salads and it’s delicious).
Eat your sugar and drink your coffee baby – you heard me right. I eat something sweet every day with my morning coffee and I love it. Would it be better for me to choose a couple of sweet dates instead of a piece of toast with Nutella and green tea instead of coffee? Heck yes… For my body. For my soul? Not so much. So I take care of my soul and have fun with it and that’s all there is to it.
There are so many crazy diets out there, and if you want to give them a try go ahead. But I suggest that you just make small changes one at a time. Stop buying soda, pick an apple for a snack instead of a bag of chips, then find a couple simple recipes for things you actually like, like chili or homemade pizza or a hamburger for example, and make them yourself. Add a salad next to anything you make and try a couple of “not white” salad dressings and see which you like. And so on and so on…
Enjoy the process and change one thing you like to another thing you like that is just a bit healthier. Don’t try to force yourself into eating things you hate because someone else said that they are healthy, it might work for a little bit, but it won’t last.
Change the way you move – You might be so tired of hearing this… Oh, whatever, suck it up. You gotta move. All. The. Time.
Honey, you are NOT meant to sit in front of the TV four hours every night or in front of the computer the whole day. You just are not. You might tell me that you hate exercising, I am telling you that you don’t.
There are so many ways to move, explore and find something you like. It will feel uncomfortable in the beginning and that’s fine but if you don’t give up and keep at it you will soon find that you feel happier, stronger, and more energized.
Do you like riding bikes? Do you like swimming? Do you like exercising in groups? Do you prefer the comfort of your home? Are you going to benefit mentally from punching a bag? Do you enjoy walking? Do you like the slow pace of yoga or do you prefer something faster that makes you sweat?
I ask you to not think about toning or sculpting your body. Don’t think about building muscle and training for a marathon. Don’t think about groups of muscle and how you can make your butt rounder. Don’t even think about getting in shape and losing weight… All those things might come later.
For now, just get used to moving. A lot. Like, almost every day even if just for 15 minutes.
I want to encourage you to not take this too hard, just like with changing the way you eat. Have fun, get up 30 minutes earlier in the morning and go for a walk, and while walking change the habit of your thoughts by looking around and listing all the wonderful things you see.
And please don’t tell me that you don’t have time to exercise because you do. We all do. You can’t afford not taking care of yourself because you are no good to anyone (including yourself) if you aren’t healthy. So screw the load of laundry, take 15 or 30 minutes to strengthen your body every day.
I personally exercise from home most of the time and once in a while, I go to town for a boxing class (I am one of those who benefits greatly from punching a bag **wink, wink). I started with short lessons from a great YouTube channel called POPSUGAR. I really recommend it if you are just starting out. When I got a bit stronger I found Les Mills. It’s a subscription service ($12.99 a month) that gives you different kinds of classes delivered via an app.
I can’t tell you how much I love it! It’s hard and fun. They are based in Europe but teach all over the world (in English). There are yoga classes, boxing classes, barre classes, hit classes, core classes, step classes, dance classes, kids classes and so much more.
All their classes are meant for man and woman and they are not easy at all. I chose a different class four or five times a week according to my mood. Within a few weeks of starting the classes, my body completely changed. It was amazing to watch and of course an amazing feeling.
This was a long post but I hope that the main thing you take from it is that this stuff is not hard. You got it, it’s simple. A few little changes every day to the way you think and eat, and more movement. Make sure to check out the few products that can help your body along with metabolism and support your digestive system HERE.
Have fun loving on yourself. Enjoy taking care of your body and seeing it change. Encourage yourself by being kind to yourself all the time. And realize that you are changing habits forever. This is not a diet, this is not a thing you do that is going to pass or change in two months.
This is your new life, your new routine. We are working on changing everything that is important, weight loss is going to be a by-product of all of this. It doesn’t matter if you lose 5 lb or 50 lb in two weeks. Don’t focus on the numbers, focus on the feeling. Feel better every day. Feel stronger and more energized every day. Feel happier every day and I promise you everything else will fall into place without any additional effort on your part.
You got this, baby!
Lady Lee is a single mother of four, she was born in Israel and raised in an agricultural commune called a Kibbutz. From a very young age, she was very interested in agriculture and farming.
She is a former IDF fitness trainer and is passionate about simple, natural living. She now lives in NC with her four kids, dog, cat, goats, ducks, and chickens.