How to Use the Secret for Weight Loss

by : Sheri O. Zampelli, M.S., CCH

The Secret is a movie about the Law of Attraction. Its popularity is growing daily, especially after Oprah dedicated two entire shows to talking about the movie and interviewing the stars. Oprah wanted to know if the Law of Attraction applies to weight loss and the answer is yes. According to The Secret, every thought, feeling and action sends an electrical impulse to the brain. For sake of simplicity, I'm going to call this electrical impulse a message unit.

In our society we have the opportunity to absorb thousands of message units daily that will prevent any chance of long-term success with weight loss. In fact, I'm bold enough to assert that some of these messages are creating the weight epidemic in modern society. We are bombarded daily with message units of slender, young and flawless images in the media. Since most of us do not meet the perfect image set by the media the underlying subconscious deduction is something like this: "I'm not good enough, I'm not thin enough, I'm too fat, I don't measure up". So, if the law of attraction works the same for everything, guess what? You are attracting your weight problem simply by living in this society and absorbing the perfect images crowding your environment. If you constantly reinforce "I'm not good enough" you are sending a command to the Universe. The command is: "Give me everything that is not good enough because that is what I am and that is what I deserve."

In addition to the extreme level of bombardment from media sources, many of us also get the "not good enough" message at home from family, friends and our significant other. Sometimes well meaning or perhaps downright cruel family members will say things like, "You're getting fat or You're a blimp or You're a Whale" or any one of a long string of verbal insults. Since these message units come from important figures in our life, they hold more power than daily media message units and they stay in our minds longer. Many times these harmful comments are repeated in our own minds thousands, even millions of times over the course of our lives. We repeat the words to ourselves so many times that they become our own self-talk.

Some of the women I see in my office have struggled with weight for 25 years or more and it all started after their brother called them "fatty" or their mom took them to a diet program because they "didn't look like the other girls." In most cases, these women look back on their teenage pictures with dismay and confusion as they ask themselves, "How could I have ever thought I was fat" or, "Why did people call me fat?" The truth is, many times the girl that is called "fatty" is not fat. She is simply full or voluptuous or even just "normal." Over the years we have lost touch with "normal" because we've been bombarded our entire life with thinner-than-healthy and even thinner-than-possible images of young women thousands of times each day. We begin to think that ultra-thin is the standard or ideal and to think of "normal" as fat because of our conditioning. The truth is, there is a wide range of shapes and sizes and all of them are "right" in fact, diversity is our beauty. If you use the BMI (Body Mass Index) as a guide for healthy weight rather than the mass media's impossible images, or your own inner negative self-talk, you'll begin to see that health comes in various sizes and shapes.

Diets directly contribute to weight problems because of the Law of Attraction. The problem with diets is that all the focus is on deprivation. Imagine how many message units you send to yourself when dieting. It probably sounds something like this: "I can't have that, I can't have this, I can never have anything good, I have to suffer to be thin, it's so easy to put on weight but so hard to take off." Add all of these message units together and you have tens of thousands of messages that are completely contradictory and adversary to your potential success in becoming permanently thin and attaining a size and shape that's right for you.

Another way we can sabotage our weight loss efforts is by sending inconsistent messages. For example, every time you say something to yourself like "I should eat more vegetables" and you DON'T, you send a message: "I don't do what I say I'm going to do." Every time you say, "I need to exercise" and you DON'T, you send another message: "I don't make time for myself" (translation: I'm not important or I'm last on the list). So, guess what? You're creating a body and a life that's "not good enough" and not worth the time. If you put self-care last and everything else first then you will probably never see the results you desire because something else will always be more important.

The movie The Secret talks about how everything is energy. A person with a weight problem has a lot of blocked or stored energy in their body and that energy needs to be released. Some of the ways to do this include crying, yelling, journaling and talking with a friend, therapist or coach. I have referred many of my clients to Deep Emotional Release Body Work with James Hyman. This type of work can produce immediate and lasting freedom from the effects of the hurts and traumas of childhood. When you release emotional blocks you are free to create and maintain a healthy eating style that will lead to gradual and permanent weight loss.

Part of the way to break free from the constant barrage of "not good enough" message units is to be aware that they exist. Become consciously aware of what you see and what you don't see on the cover of every magazine. Notice how often you see these images and in how many different places throughout the day or night. Notice the headlines. Notice your self-talk. Are you comparing yourself harshly to an impossible standard? Are you judging or berating thin people? How are you feeling? Do you feel fat, ugly, invisible or unimportant?

If you live in a metropolis like I do, you see and hear these message units all day, everyday. They are on busses, bus benches, billboards, shopping carts, magazines, radio talk shows, T.V. shows, newspapers, websites, direct mail, e-mail and more. Millions of message units are delivered to you daily and they all say the same thing: You are not good enough. If you are a passive recipient of these messages, you create a life and a body that fits the criteria of "not good enough." You will constantly strive to improve your look but no matter what you do, it will not be good enough.

Luckily, you can use the same techniques the media uses to your own benefit and you'll only have to spend a few dollars doing it. Also good to know: messages that you create personally are more powerful to your subconscious mind than messages from the mass media. In the Donate Your Weight program I provide several pages of positive affirmations you can use to focus on weight loss success and self-care. In my affirmation CD's I use the power of repetition and help listeners to focus on desired outcomes. You can use the same technique by recording your affirmations in your own voice and listening to them continuously throughout the day. Many times we have a weight problem because we always focus on what we don't want. We repeat and rehearse words like "I'm fat or I still need to lose more weight" and eventually we create that reality. If you use affirmations daily on flash cards or audio recordings, you will begin to create the life and the body you want.

You can also use a vision board to create weight loss results. Simply cut out or create words and pictures that symbolize what you want to look like and feel like and focus on it every day. Be sure to avoid unrealistic images. There are many things you can do with only a few dollars that will literally change your life but you have to be willing to take the time to become aware of the messages that are creating or nurturing your weight problem in the first place. Then, you'll need to dedicate time in your daily life to create a new reality. Just as your body today is a product of past thoughts and actions, your body of the future will be transformed based on the new thoughts and actions you reinforce from this day forward.