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The Full Mind Weigh® to Lifelong Weight Management, a program of the Institute for Lifelong Weight Management – teaching you the skills you need to keep the weight off forever!

When I talk to clients who have a lot of weight to lose, it’s common to hear them say how overwhelmed they feel by the enormity of the task at hand. And when we feel overwhelmed, we may believe that we can’t succeed. We can use, “It’s too much, too overwhelming, or too big of a task” as a reason for not starting at all – or for quitting. We may feel as though we might as well just give up, and we’re very much at risk for doing just that – especially on those days when we’re stressed, feeling emotional, and/or almost spent in terms of our available coping resources.

Think about it this way. If a college student was just starting their program and on the first day of school they’re told: “Here are your assignments for the next four years. You have to read this pile of books (hundreds), write all these papers (again hundreds), complete all these projects (countless), and lab reports (many)….” how do you think they would feel? Completely overwhelmed of course, with no idea where to start. Right? It’s the same with weight loss. We have to take it a small piece at a time. Have you heard the old joke that goes: “How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.”

Or think about planning a wedding or other major family celebration. You’d do it one piece at a time, right? Maybe first location, then food and beverages, then entertainment, photography and videography, invitations and other announcements, attire….and so on. In other words, you’d break it down into smaller pieces.

How about if you’re packing up your home to move somewhere else? You’d tackle it one room at a time, or more likely one closet at a time, right?

So take it one small piece at a time – one pound, one day at a time, even one meal at a time. Break it down into small pieces. Focus less on the pounds and inches, and more on small doable behavior changes like these:

  • Drink two glasses of water with each meal
  • Eat one serving of fruit with each meal
  • Eat two servings of vegetables with lunch and dinner
  • Walk for 30 minutes each day
  • Learn how to cook vegetables in an appetizing yet healthy way
  • Prepare meals at the weekend for the rest of the week
  • Grocery shop at the weekend for the rest of the week
  • Try a new vegetable each week
  • Do some deep breathing for 5 minutes each morning and evening

Get the idea?

Share your thoughts about this topic with me and with other readers by commenting on this post.

To learn about effective weight management strategies, join my next weight management class, The Full Mind Weigh® to Lifelong Weight Management. For details, visit

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With your continued health in mind,

Doreen Lerner, Ph.D.

Director, Institute for Lifelong Weight Management

Creator, The Full Mind Weigh® to Lifelong Weight Management

The Institute for Lifelong Weight Management provides education and training. The Full Mind Weigh® is strictly an educational program and is not a substitute for medical or psychological evaluation or treatment. If you think you may be suffering from an eating disorder, please consult with a qualified mental health professional who is trained to evaluate and treat eating disorders.