Cognitive Dissonance

Denial Quote.jpg

Dear R.,

Do you recall first telling me about your family and friends' feelings about being overweight? 

Within your hispanic heritage, communal food and the weight it packs on are all part of the culture. Your friends believe that being overweight is something to embrace, be empowered by . . . that you should be proud of who you are no matter what. In fact, they see healthy eating and exercise as a waste of time.

Yet, after you received a stern "6-months until needing medication" warning by your doctor . . . you found yourself at a crossroads. Your old beliefs no longer aligned with what you now knew to be the truth . . . that you needed to make changes in order to live the life you wanted.

What you experienced just before choosing to reach out to me is called cognitive dissonance . . . when our beliefs no longer match the reality of our life. And when cognitive dissonance is not resolved through action, we live in a constant state of stress. That stress can be expressed through depression, anger, avoidance, overeating, undereating, etc. 

To move past it, you had to make a choice: align your actions more closely with what you believe; modify what you believe to more closely mirror the reality around you; or some of both

Fortunately, you knew that protecting your ego at the expense of your health was no longer worth it . . . and you chose to merge your worlds . . . armed with information that told you it was time to step out of the comfort of what was known and into a world of learning something new. 

And because being heavy did not actually make you happy, you took action to change your eating and exercise habits. And now as a result, by changing both your beliefs and your behavior, you feel beautiful . . . for the first time in almost twenty years.

Congratulations on your success!

- Coach Rebecca

Rebecca Boskovic