Unhealthy Weight Loss Is Like Death By A Thousand Cuts [Podcast Episode #003]

Do you feel like every Monday you’re starting your diet over again and that no matter how hard you try, you never see the scale budge? Then you’re not alone – in fact, you’re like millions of women who’ve been trying to lose weight for years.

In a world where the “move more, eat less” philosophy has become outdated and the “quick fix” or new trendy diet is the sexy desirable thing (because really, who wants to feel crappy any longer than they have to)  women are at a loss for what to do when they *know* what they’re doing isn’t working.

It’s time for a new conversation – one that gets to the root of the issue once and for all.  Join me as I share some truth bombs about what’s really going on for women and the real reason they’re failing with their diet (I know because I did the same thing too!).

In this episode you will…

  • Learn how changing the story you have of yourself can take you from failing to thriving with your health and weight loss goals
  • Discover how doing one key thing will finally help you feel amazing in your own skin again
  • Hear a fresh way of approaching your life that can change everything for the better
  • Recognize the ways you self-sabotage and finally know what to do about it
    [Tweet “What you say “yes” to is just as important as what you say “no” to – are you saying yes to yourself?”]

Episode Resources:

Unhealthy Weight Loss Is Like Death By A Thousand Cuts [Full Text]

Jen: I want to thank you so much for tuning into the episode today and for just making the launch of this podcast so spectacular. I’ve truly be humbled by the messages and notes and reviews that you have shared with me. I just want to say that I’m grateful. This has been a dream of mine for a really long time and it took me awhile to actually bring it to fruition. I’m super grateful that I have and for all of your support. Just a big thank you.

What I want to dive into on today’s episode is really the deeper conversation that I’m having with women about why weight loss can just be like death by a thousand cuts. I’ve been coaching women for about five years now on getting healthier and how to change their lifestyle and their habits, but do you know what the underpinning of so much of the change revolves around? It’s around changing the story you have about yourself.

What happens along this journey, for so many of you, is you get to a point where life has gotten busy or crept up on you and 10, 20, 30 pounds has crept on. Maybe it has happened slowly or maybe there has been a traumatic event and it’s happened more quickly. Then you wake up and you decide that you need to change. You want that change immediately. You’re desperate for it.

The quick fix becomes this sexy desirable thing, because you don’t want to spend one more minute feeling awful about yourself. Then you engage in the cleanse, the detox, the pills, taking the drops, or doing crazy exercise. You see some weight loss, but the method you’re using is so extreme that you can’t hang onto it. You can’t live like that day in and day out managing the rest of your life, so at some point I hear the words, “And then I just fell off the wagon.” Then women stay off the wagon, because who wants to get on a wagon that is so hard to ride?

What I now know after doing it myself, first of all, but after coaching hundreds of women, is here’s the thing. We are so willing to break a promise that we make to ourselves than we are to anyone else on the planet. Just get that. You are more willing to say that you’re going to do something to yourself and then find a totally justifiable reason or excuse to not do it and you break your promise.

If you do that just once or not very often, it’s not a big deal. But in the world of health, nutrition, and weight loss, you’re probably doing this 1,000 times a week. “I’m not going to have the cookie. Oh my god, I ate the cookie. I’m not going to have any wine. Oh my god, I drank the bottle.” You say one thing to yourself and then you do something completely opposite. You are not holding integrity with your word.

Weight loss is not about the move more eat less. If you really want to get to the crux of what is going to help you move forward in your journey, it’s to learn how to cultivate and recreate radical self trust. So that you know when you say you’re going to do something you follow through. The minute that you don’t it’s a betrayal.

Dr. Elizabeth Lombardo in Episode 002 talked about the inner critic and how we all have one. Your inner critic will grab onto that failure and it will use it as a reminder to tell you that you don’t have the willpower, you’re clearly not committed, look at the ways you cheat, look at how you can never follow through. It uses your failures and it stockpiles this personal ammunition to make you feel like a failure. You’re not. You’ve just broken trust.

Stay with me for a minute here. Imagine you’re single and imagine you’re going on a date. You meet this guy or this girl, this person sounds really great, they really almost sound too good to be true. You set up a time to meet them and you go. Yeah, they show up, they’re there, they’re engaging, they’re funny, they’re nice. You think, “This is going to be a good thing,” so you set up a time to meet the next day.

But they’re not there. You wait and you wait, and they don’t show. They call you a little bit later and they say, “Sorry. Something came up. I’m going to meet you tomorrow.” Tomorrow you go back to the place you’re going to meet and they stand you up again. They have another excuse, another reason about why they weren’t there.

You go back the next day. Still they’re not there. No phone call, no text, nothing. But you keep going back. Honestly, would you? No. Hell no. You’d be like, “See you later, loser. I’m not tolerating that.”

The thing is this is what we do. We don’t show up for our own self and then we create excuses around it. We keep making promises and we keep letting our own self down. That’s when the disappointment enters. That’s when we start to question.

Go back to the date scenario. If that person said they were going to show up and didn’t show up, you might give them another chance. But if they did it repeatedly, you would not tolerate that – or hopefully you would not tolerate that behavior from someone else. Yet you’re tolerating it from yourself.

The goal this week is to really start to become impeccable with your word. That’s out of The Four Agreements, a great book. Don’t even focus on trying to not drink this or don’t eat that, or do this not that. Don’t make hard rules for yourself. Just simply make yourself the promise that you are going to do what you say you are going to do, and have follow through on it.

The minute that you do that, you are going to start to change what you think about yourself. You’re going to feel differently. You’ll start to cultivate hope and a renewed sense of faith that actually you totally can do this.

For many of my clients they’re living with a story about themselves that is so unkind, unflattering, it’s so harmful, and it’s not true. They live with the limiting belief that they can’t, that they’re a failure, that they’re never going to be able to, that their bodies are broken, that their hormones or whatever stage of life they’re in that they just need to resign themselves to being happy with the skin that they’re in even though they’re not.

Don’t do another diet. Instead, start to focus on reconnecting with yourself, figuring out who you are again, and why you break so many promises that you make to yourself and what that’s about. Weight loss is hard in our environment, I’m going to give us that, but the reason that it’s made even more difficult is because of how we approach it. It’s because of the fact that maybe we’ve failed before in the past and then believe failure is imminent and that’s the only solution. It’s not the weight loss itself that’s hard, it’s the way that we’re going about it. It’s coupled with not showing up, not doing the things that you say you’re going to do.

If you say you’re going to get up at 6:00 in the morning, get up at 6:00, don’t hit snooze and sleep until 6:30. If you say you’re going to drink more water, do whatever it takes to drink more water in your day. If you’re deciding to cut down on caffeine, learn how to say no to your colleagues when they say, “Let’s go for coffee at 3:00.” Sometimes there needs to be more nos than yeses, and other times there needs to be more yeses than nos. Let me explain that.

I want you to start to recognize that every time you say yes to something in your life you are simply choosing to say no to something else. The minute that you say yes to the second helping, yes to the mocha frappuccino chip whatever, you’re saying no to weight loss. The minute you say yes to appetizers and drinks without controlling how much you’re having you are saying no to weight loss. The minute that you decide to go to bed late, burn the candle at both ends, you are saying no to your health.

You might be saying yes to those things in the moment, because whatever they are they’re giving you a sense of satisfaction, or indulgence, or comfort. There’s that quote that says what you want most in the moment should never give way for what you want most overall. When you hang onto your dream with the belief and the faith and the hope that it can happen for you, you start to change the energy around the journey. It becomes more fun and more positive, more enjoyable.

No one can white knuckle restriction and deprivation and horrible diets for months or years on end. That’s why they don’t work. If you make this about you really understanding you, who you are, and doing what you say you’re going to do, having that follow through. Honestly, we have this follow through in almost every other area of our lives.

If you have a job there are expectations, you need to be at work at a certain time, you have a certain number of responsibilities, and you get to leave at a certain time. There is somebody that is monitoring you, usually, to ensure that you’re fulfilling that responsibility.

In your relationships there are other inherent responsibilities that you need to follow through on; being kind, being loving, being patient. You may not be perfect at all of those things all of the time, but if you were not to follow through on that the majority of the time you would not end up staying in the relationship.

Parenting; you follow through on the things that you’re going to do as a parent. You change dirty diapers, you dress your kids, you wipe their bums, you take them to their things, and you do it even when you do not feel like doing it. You do it when you’re tired. You do it when you have other things on your plate. You show up.

What I want you to get is that you show up in your life for so many other reasons and people. That’s how you know you can do it. You just have to make yourself as important as all of those other things.

This is where I want to take your attention this week. It’s all good to listen to all of the experts and the advice and to read, but honestly if you cannot get clear on the fact that weight loss, and getting healthy, and changing your lifestyle habits really will only become permanent once you learn to trust yourself again. If you keep acting and behaving in ways that make you think you’re a failure, then failure will be the result you experience. I know it sounds like common sense, but it’s worth saying because it’s a conversation I have with every single one of my clients.

    [Tweet “If you keep thinking and acting in ways that make you think you’re a failure, then failure will be the result you experience. ~ Jen Powter”]

We can make metaphors and similes around so many other things. It’s like saying you want to write a book, but you never actually sit down to get your ideas on paper and you always have a million excuses. The worst part is that you’re going to beat yourself up and make yourself a failure for not writing the book. Whereas if you just sat down every day at a certain time and wrote 1,000 words, or whatever people recommend for book writers, you would do it.

Everything in life requires that you show up first, that you commit first. You will not get the result without putting in the effort first. Consistent effort, day to day effort, week to week effort.

Go back to dating. What’s the good of having a guy who shows up for this really super awesome day long date and then vanishes for the next three months, and then shows up again to wow you, wine and dine you for a day, and then is off for six months? That would not be a good relationship, if that’s the thing you’re looking for.

Please let me know what you think about this. Get in touch with me, comment on social media, email me. Where do you give up on yourself? What is the deeper work that needs to happen for you so that you can start to pivot, do that 180 and go from feeling like a failure to totally knowing success is right around the corner in whatever area of your life you’re striving to achieve it? That’s my wish.

That’s my episode for today. Thank you so much for listening. I hope that this conversation sparks something in you, ignites a different way to look at what is required for true transformation.

We cannot keep it on the surface level anymore. It has to go to the real issues. The issues are not about eating more kale, quinoa, or wild salmon. It’s about learning how to love and trust yourself again. It’s about learning to do what you say you’re going to do. It’s about following through even when you’re tired or feel like giving up. You don’t, you hang onto the dream.

I cannot wait to hear how this goes forward for you. Thanks so much. That’s today’s episode of Energy to Thrive. Catch you next week.

By | 2017-10-30T13:17:44-07:00 June 6th, 2017|Podcast|4 Comments

About the Author:

Jennifer coaches busy, successful women with imperfect lives who want to look and feel amazing from the inside out. With her tried-and-proven weight loss method—ENERGY to Thrive™—Jennifer takes the fascinating science of physiological transformation and breaks it down into six empowering steps.


  1. bernadette feener June 8, 2017 at 5:59 am - Reply

    I agree with your thought process and feel that this is a common sense approach for all women to follow. I look forward to future podcasts.

    • Jennifer Powter June 12, 2017 at 9:21 am - Reply

      Hi Bernadette,
      Thank you so much!! There’s a new episode released every week ~ some really amazing guest experts coming up. Please let me know if you have a question or a topic you’d like covered.

  2. Kerri Workman March 25, 2019 at 5:09 pm - Reply

    Hi Jennifer, thanks for this podcast today. I totally enjoyed this and look forward to April 13/14 with you.
    I’m hoping maybe you can discuss or have a podcast about fad diets. Ie: Keto Diet
    Please and thanks.
    Sincerely. Kerri.

    • Jennifer Powter March 27, 2019 at 4:06 pm - Reply

      Hey Kerri ~ That’s such a great idea! There’s SO much confusion around the Keto Diet (I’m not a fan)…Season 2 of my podcast will be released later this spring!!

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