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What are your stories?

"I am just someone that finds it hard to lose weight” “I am just someone who hates the gym” “I am just someone who binges and needs to overeat” “I am just someone who never gets the good job/promotion” “I am just always the bridesmaid and never the bride” “I am just a really anxious person or a worrier” What are the stories that you tell yourself? Take a moment to stop and think about how you perceive yourself. The internal stories that we tell ourselves about who we are then go on to affect how we live our lives. If you identify yourself as someone who “hates the gym” - you are never going to feel the motivation to go to the gym. If you are someone who believes that you “never get the jo

How is your relationship with food?

"Losing weight is not your life's work, and counting calories is not the call of your soul. You surely are destined for something much greater." There is a lot of relationship advice out there. “How to tell whether he/she is the one for you.” “How to spot the warning signs of a dysfunctional relationship”. “When to let your friendship go”… and yet one relationship that we very rarely examine, is the relationship that we have with food. The stuff that sustains us and enables us to live our lives - also seems to often come with feelings of guilt, or shame. The stuff that gives us pleasure and that we often socialise over – can also become something that we worry about or obsess over. There

What I wish I’d learnt at School

I loved school. I was one of those weird people that actually really enjoyed getting up in the morning to go and learn...and I learnt many useful things in my time at school. Yet thinking back, it seems as though there were a few very crucial areas where our UK curriculum falls short. There are some things that I wish I had learnt at school because they would have transformed the state of my mental and physical health over the long-term. Here are a few things that I wish I had learnt at school: How My Brain Works I never learnt how my brain works. Now maybe it is a bit ridiculous to expect neuroscience to be on the school curriculum - but perhaps some basic understanding of what the diffe

Why you should stop aiming for perfection

“At its root, perfectionism isn’t really about a deep love of being meticulous. It’s about fear. Fear of making a mistake. Fear of disappointing others. Fear of failure. Fear of success.” -Michael Law Unhelpful perfectionism affects many of the people that I work with. By unhelpful perfectionism I mean that these individuals set very high standards for themselves in one area of their life that often leaves them sacrificing other things in their life - and where pursuing these high standards often leaves them feeling anxious or exhausted. Maybe they have high standards for their professional life, or want everyone to like them or maybe they have high standards when it comes to their health

Why Intuitive Eating Isn’t Always A Good Idea

I post this at the risk of rubbing a lot of people up the wrong way. There are a lot of nutritionists and dieticians out there that will tell anyone that will listen about the benefits of intuitive eating - which basically involves eating by listening to your body - eating when you are hungry and stopping when you are full as well as rejecting the diet mentality. However, looking at the principles of intuitive eating from a psychological perspective - and taking into account the research we have from the field of neuroscience - the principles of intuitive eating are not always appropriate for everyone. Why? Well firstly - we know from the field of neuroscience that a lot of our eating patte

That Inner World of Yours...

“When your interest only remains in the external world, you simply separate yourself from the whole truth. The whole process of life is to take you inward.” ― Roshan Sharma We each live in a world - that nobody else can see or hear, that nobody else fully comprehends, magical beyond belief.... but also that very few of us even understands. I am of course talking about that world inside of our minds - our thoughts and the way that we feel as a result. It is World Mental Health Day this Thursday and rather than talking about the prevalence of anxiety, depression, eating disorders and other mental illnesses - I wanted to emphasise that we ALL stand to gain from looking to optimise the state

Do you worry others are judging you?

How often have you worried that someone else is judging you? Perhaps you wonder whether someone you have just met likes you? Or maybe you worry about whether your colleague at work thinks you are intelligent enough to be doing your job?... Or you spend your day thinking about whether your partner still finds you attractive?... Or maybe you torture yourself with thoughts that someone in the room has noticed your wrinkles, big belly or thinning hair? ... Many people spend a lot of time worrying about how other people perceive them. Of course, this has a very detrimental effect on the state of their mental health. Firstly, we never really know what is going on in someone else’s mind. They cou

Why You Can’t Stick to Your Diet or Exercise Regime

"Does refusing to go to the gym count as resistance training?" Most people cannot stick to a diet or exercise regime. Why is that? Why do you do so well for a few weeks or a few months even - only then to slowly slip into bad habits and then notice that you are back where you started off, not exercising, eating lots of unhealthy food and wishing that you had never fallen off the wagon. The reason that most people can’t stick to a diet or exercise plan is because they assume that their will-power controls their choices. However it is actually a much more primitive part of our brain - an almost animalistic part of our brain (not the willpower part) - that dictates the majority of our habits

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