Weigh Yourself Daily
Ahhhh. The scale. My worst enemy for a long time! I remember so clearly back in nursing school (over 7 years ago) how I would secretly record my weight every day, but used my weight as an excuse to literally beat myself up. Lost a pound? It was luck. Gained a pound? You’re a failure. I was so unkind to myself that the thought of recording my weight daily seemed too painful to even consider.
Flash forward to 2018, I actually welcome the scale. In fact, I encourage weighing yourself daily. And here’s why. If you look at the scale, all that comes up is a number. And that’s literally all it is — a number.
It’s what we make that number mean that causes us so much pain. The number itself is neutral and is, quite literally, an objective measure of our weight. It’s just like measuring our patient’s blood pressure every single shift. We look at it, and if it’s relatively normal, we carry on. If it’s abnormal, we do what we need to do to correct it. But we don’t make it mean something personal about us as nurses. The blood pressure just is what it is. An objective measurement.
But here’s why the scale can be so helpful. Not only does it help you track your weight loss progress (we learned enough about data collection in school, right?). But it also helps you see what’s going on in your brain. It helps you see what thoughts you are having about yourself — either positive or negative.
There’s no such thing as a “bad” thought. But just notice the thoughts that come up for you when you look at the scale. Are they positive? Negative? How do these thoughts make you feel? And do those feelings serve you?
Before, I always used to think that if I gained a pound (yes, just ONE pound), I was a failure. Or I was fat. Or I was weak. But that was because I made that mean something about me.
It is entirely up to you to decide what you want to make that number mean. Again, the number is objective. It is completely neutral. It is only what we think about the number that can potentially cause us pain, and derail our actions towards our weight loss goals.
As an exercise, I invite you to weigh yourself daily this week. Write the first thought that comes to mind IMMEDIATELY after you see that number. And ask yourself why you thought that, with curiosity and compassion for yourself.
You may be surprised to reveal what you are actually thinking about yourself and your weight at this current moment.
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