If you have ever watched any of the reality weight-loss shows, one of the first things you notice about the successful contestants is the dramatic change in their personality. While overweight, many folks suffer from low self-esteem and feelings of worthlessness, according to the American Council of Exercise (ACE) in "Lifestyle and Weight Management." Furthermore ACE states that "overweight people receive a message that they are indulgent, lazy or stupid." Losing weight can help change these negative attitudes.
Effects of Weight Loss
When you step on the scale and you see a lower number, you immediately feel relieved. You feel better about yourself, and your confidence level improves, at least temporarily. Achieving a large weight-loss goal, like successful contestants on "The Biggest Loser" do, changes their personalities noticeably and is reflected in their smiles, their posture, their attitudes and their self-confidence. The determination that was buried under layers of fat shines through.
Benefits of Personality Changes
The benefits of the personality changes that accompany weight loss are far-reaching. ACE states that exercise and weight loss "enhances self-efficacy, self-determination and self-esteem." Not being a prisoner in your own body feels like having the freedom and options available to live your life to the fullest. Being an inspiration to others is the icing on the cake. Spreading a healthy, you-can-do-it message to friends, family and acquaintances can motivate your loved ones and your community to live healthier lifestyles.
Maintaining your weight loss over time leads to personality changes that reflect the real you. When you have succeeded in keeping the weight off for years, the real you has been around long enough to know who you are and that you are here to stay. Inner confidence and self-assurance radiate from you because you walk the walk and are true to the healthy person within.
Maybe you think if you could just lose weight, you’d be happy. Or you look at a skinny person and assume their lives are perfect. Just remember, skinny people have problems and self-esteem issues, too. They don’t just go away when the weight goes away. Even fashion and fitness models can be highly critical of their own bodies.
Although losing weight can result in positive personality changes, there are always going to be issues to deal with. Part of the personality change requires developing the strength of character and determination to know that no matter what life throws at you, you have the fortitude to withstand it without turning to food. Never let your guard down, and always stay true to the healthy person you are meant to be.
- "Lifestyle and Weight Management"; American Council on Exercise; 1996