I lost a lot of weight a year ago after being overweight – I’ve been a size 24 since I was a teenager and now I am a size 12. I would have killed to be that size before, but somehow I still don’t feel satisfied. I keep trying extreme diets to lose another 5 kilos and I just can’t stop thinking about this. I thought I would be happy when I Iost weight but I am actually more miserable now than I have ever been. What can I do about this?
Firstly, congratulations on your weight loss, that’s a big achievement.
Sometimes when you focus on a goal for so long, you create a lot of expectations about how it’s going to be, and maybe how it will solve all your problems. When we achieve that goal it feels good for a while, but you aren’t magically happy and you still experience difficulties and problems. Then you keep looking for the next thing – like losing another 5 kilos as the answer. The reality is even if you achieve that, you still feel empty.
External things don’t create lasting happiness – you need to look inside yourself for that.
What do you really want for your life?
What makes you feel good about yourself? What are you grateful for? Happiness comes from an appreciation of what you have rather than focussing on what’s wrong.
Having pleasure in your life, having a sense of meaning or purpose and good quality relationships are the things that create sustained happiness. Start investing in these things, rather than the latest diet. You will notice how much better you can feel.
If you feel too down to even try these things, then maybe you need to talk to a professional about this. Sometimes it’s hard to make those inner changes on your own, so reach out and get the help you need.