I have a weightloss secret. It's visualization, and it sounds woo.
You might even think you aren't “into that,” but the problem is YOU ARE DOING IT RIGHT NOW.
Think about this statement.
I'm losing all my weight in 2021 by doing that simple shit Corinne tells me to do each week.
What popped into your head?
“That sounds good, but I always fail.”
“It's not as easy as that.”
“Her shit is too simple for my big ass weight problem.”
Thoughts like those come with a mental picture.
The images you replay over and over in your mind can either help or hurt your weightloss.
Keep imagining yourself stress-eating Oreos at night, and you'll find yourself eating your face off without even stopping to ask yourself if this is what you really want.
In today’s podcast, I’ll teach you easy fixes to busted ass visualization processes. If you're going to visualize, you might as well learn how to do it like a boss.
Topics discussed in this episode:
Topic 1: Why picturing your weightloss failures over and over is the wrong approach to help you lose your weight, and what to do instead. [0:00 – 2:37]
Topic 2: How your brain is wired to say asshole shit to yourself about losing weight, and the exact way to catch and redirect your way to positive self-talk. [2:31 – 8:46]
Topic 3: How research reveals people that visualize have more success, and how it works hand-in-hand with the 4 basics to lose weight. [9:05 – 12:58]
Topic 4: Easy visualization tips my No BS women learn about food urges, and how they picture themselves doing all their actions on purpose that lead to weightloss. [12:49 – 33:16]
Resources mentioned in this episode:
Brendon Burchard [6:19 – 8:46]
Dr. Judd Biasiotto [9:05 – 12:58]
The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks [32:05 – 33:05]
Corrine: Hello, everybody. Welcome back. So today, I’m here with Kathy, and we are going to talk today. Originally, I was going to call this episode, Stop Visualizing for Weight Loss, and I decided to call it, How to Visualize for Weight Loss, because … let me just tell you why I wanted to call it Stop Visualizing, first of all. And when Kathy and I were talking about this, she brought this point up about how … so every single person in here right now listening, you visualize now, weight loss. It’s just, most of us have a very uncontrolled visualization process.
Kathy: That’s a good way to put it.
Corrine: It’s a, “Well, Corrine.” I’ve got to like, “You know tonight, I’m going to eat at eight o’clock because I’m so used to eating them Oreos.” When I say that, your brain starts picturing yourself, just sitting there, going ham on Oreos. It’s eating the Oreos. That’s visualization. So it’s really important to understand that, we all have the skill of visualizing. It’s just that most of us are sitting around visualizing worst case scenario, how many ways I will fail at doing this. What are some of the other fun, fabulous ways of visualizing [inaudible] we’re all sitting around doing.
Kathy: Right. It’s called memories. I did that last night and here’s what I did.
Corrine: Yeah. So we go back [inaudible] because one of the things that I really work with our clients on, is if you want to lose weight, if you want to do something you haven’t done before, you can’t go back to all of your failures and obsess over them and think about them, to decide what you’re going to do now. A lot of people go back there. They don’t realize how terrible it feels, how your brain pictures you doing it over and over again. So it’s getting reps on, “Oh, okay.” So every night, no matter how good you’ve been all day, you should just eat your face off because that’s all you thought about all day long. [crosstalk]
Kathy: That’s what we did last night. That’s what we did the night before.
Corrine: Exactly. And so we want to teach you how to actually think about your weight loss and visualize in a way that’s beneficial. So, that’s what we’re going to be really focusing on this episode. Because I just think it’s important. When I talk to people about my own weight loss, I know one of the things that was significantly different for me was, I would catch myself thinking just ass hole shit, like, “Well, so hard for you. You know you’ve always regained your weight.” I would go back and I would think about everything that was difficult. Everything that I probably couldn’t do, all the things that I’ve never been able to do. And I would find myself feeling terrible. I would catch myself just thinking about those things. And this is the thing, it’s normal to think about all that, you’re not going to hear the words come out of me and Cathy’s mouth.
And then suddenly, light bulbs are exploding. And I never think that stuff again. All of that’s supposed to be coming up because our brains are just wired that way. The problem is when you don’t do anything about it. It’s when you just let yourself stay there. And so I would notice that when I really wanted to figure out weight loss the last time, because I wasn’t going to do a diet. I was like, “I refuse to do weird diets. I refuse to count calories. I’m going to make small changes and this is just the way it’s going to be. And I’m going to figure some of that stuff out.” Well, I would catch myself thinking crap and I would suddenly go like, “Oh, I can’t think like this. If I think like this, I feel terrible. So this is how I’m going to think.” And so I would immediately redirect myself and I would do that all the time. I still do it to this day.
I was doing it about 20 minutes ago. As I was reading something where somebody was bitching about me and I was like, “Oh my gosh.” I think my first thought was, you just can’t help anyone. [crosstalk] You just can’t help anyone, seriously.
Kathy: That’s what they said?
Corrine: No, that’s what I thought.
Kathy: Oh, that’s what you thought.
Corrine: Based on their shitty opinion about me.
Kathy: Oh, okay. So you pretty much read somebody’s shitty opinion and agreed with them.
Corrine: Yeah. So I was-
Corrine: I was on the social ready to interact with people who follow me because I respond to my comments and stuff myself and somebody was getting crazy because I curse and had to just stop and make sure, that I knew how terrible that was. And I was like, “See, I just can’t help anyone.” And I just disregarded everything positive that was in the post. And so I immediately told myself, “Okay, this person doesn’t like cursing. That doesn’t mean that you can’t help anyone.” I literally had to remind myself of what’s actually going on here. It is the same way when it comes to visualizing and thinking about your weight loss. Your brain is going to make a lot of unreasonable assumptions based on your past. And our job is to train our brain, how to make very reasonable assumptions based on what we want for our future.
It’s very different thinking. So anywho, I moved on past all that. I get that a lot of people don’t like my cursing, it’s okay. I actually got an email. I want to read this point. It’s from this person that I … you’re going to die when you hear this. So I literally just told myself, let’s redirect this unreasonable assumption. I opened my email up. I get an email from Brandon Burchard and it’s called, Judged but Grateful. And his point number two in it was, so many people who do judge you are uninformed, or frankly don’t really care. Most are just doing casual observational drive-bys. I was like, “That is so good.” That’s what it feels like a lot of times when people are offering their opinion and the holidays and all kinds of things, it feels like somebody is like, “Let me do a drive-by of all my opinions at you.”
So anyway, I just loved it because he said, “You’re not getting informed assessments of you most of the time. You’re getting a lot of noise, somebody else’s noise and opinion.” So anyway, it was just funny that the first thing that I read after that was like that. And I was like, “Perfect. That’s exactly what I needed.” But the same goes for your brain. So I want you all to think about so much of our brain is just a lot of habit thinking. You listen to this podcast you’re like, “What? We get to decide how we’re going to think?” I teach a lot of that. So once you understand that your brain like, “All right, I don’t want to think like this right now. So now I’m going to purposely think this way.” That means your brain very often it’s just like my Instagram hater or just like people with opinions, your brain is going to do observational drive-bys all the time.
And your job is to literally just shut it up and move on to something else. It’s not wrong. It’s not bad. I promise all of you. It can be overcome. And with enough time, our brain is always going to be our own harshest critic. That’s its job. If it stops doing that, we’re all in a heap of trouble. We’ll be juggling knives, fire, and running the streets naked. We’ll just do whatever we want to do, no matter what. [crosstalk]
Kathy: Sounds like Las Vegas.
Corrine: Yeah, exactly. So what we want to do is have the skill of being able to filter out our own noise and then think on purpose what we want to think. And that’s where visualization comes in. So I was reading, I don’t remember what book I read this in. I wish I did. It was probably either the Big, it might’ve been the Big Leap by Gay Hendricks.
Because when I was taking these notes, I think that was the book I was reading, but I took so many notes in this little notebook, but I didn’t write it down. But there was a guy named Doctor and I’m going to butcher his name, Biasiaotto, it’s a, B-I-A-S-I-A-O-T-T-O and he took three groups of people and he was going to teach them how to do something new. One group showed them and then had them practice. So they had to practice every day how to do it. Another group, he just told them. He didn’t do anything with them. They didn’t practice. They didn’t visualize. And the third group, they were only to see it done and then visualize themselves doing it every single day. At the end of the study, the people who didn’t do anything, of course, nothing happened.
They couldn’t do the new skill. That was it. The people who practice, 24% of them were doing it better than the first time they were shown. 20 let’s see, 3% of them when or doing it better when they visualized. So basically the people who practice and the people who visualized, improved about the same amount. And that just shows you how powerful your brain is at seeing something on purpose in your mind about what you want to do. And then it goes to work on creating your capacity, to be able to do it, to find the resources around you in any given moment to make it happen. And so I thought it was fascinating because we were talking about visualization and most of us are doing it. We’re just doing it like [inaudible] to ourselves. And one of the things that I think is hard in weight loss is when … so you and I, we teach everybody to do their basics.
You’re going to eat when you’re hungry and you’re going to stop when you’ve had enough. You’re going to drink water every day, 64 ounces. You’re going to get seven hours of sleep. And then you’re going to write down in the morning or the day before, what you’re going to eat for the day. And put anything you want on there. We don’t take away any foods. We don’t make you count calories. You don’t have to measure anything. You just need to decide it ahead of time. That’s it. If every person did those things, they would lose weight. The only problem is that between you doing all of that, is the things your brain thinks about. So if your brain thinks that you always fail every diet you start, then it’s going to take those basics and make them harder than they have to be. It’s going to say like, “Well, you really don’t have time today, and you didn’t even follow the plan you made yesterday.
So you probably shouldn’t even do it today.” You know to make one, but when your brain starts thinking that stuff, it starts visualizing like, “Well, you see yesterday, you just blowing off your plan in your mind.” And then you see all the things that you got to do today and a plan not being part of your process. So your brain is visualizing something. It’s just visualizing what you don’t want to happen. So it’s really important to be mindful of that, because if you know what to do and you start practicing, but you’re offsetting all of that with poor visualization habits, you get nowhere. So that’s why I think a lot of people end up blowing up and quitting or getting frustrated or seeing themselves self-sabotage all the time. And one of the most common forms of self-sabotage is, eating too much food at night. You eat dinner and then you’re done.
And the next thing you know, it’s eight o’clock. You’re a little bit restless. You want to wind down. You don’t like feeling like you have more to do. You don’t like thinking about all the things you didn’t do today. You feel like you didn’t … there’s things you should be doing, you could’ve done a better job on. So your brain is stewing in that and you feel restless. And because what you really want to do is relax, you eat. Knowing you’re really not hungry. And so what ends up happening is you know that it’s not on your plan and all this other stuff, but all day long, you visualize, “Well, I sure hope I can stay on plan tonight because I really haven’t been able to do that well the last few days.” And so your brain immediately goes to seeing you sitting, there eating your face off. Next thing you know, you’re like, “Well, I really hope I don’t eat them Oreos.” And next thing you know, your brain sees you eating Oreos.
And so that’s why self-sabotage happens. It’s because all day long, you’re visualizing what you don’t want to happen. And then when you get into the moment, you haven’t practiced at all what you do want to happen. You haven’t seen yourself sitting there. You haven’t seen yourself calming yourself down with better thinking about yourself. You don’t see yourself feeling restless and then taking some deep breaths and telling yourself it’ll all be okay. You’re not going through a visualization of that part.
Kathy: I think this is just totally fascinating because I had not … until I was listening to you talk about this, I had not thought about the number of times I’ve had a thought about something that happened yesterday or last week, or habit that I have, that didn’t automatically come with a visual in my mind. It’s almost like if you think about daydreaming. If you think you just staring off into space and you’re thinking about something. You’re also visualizing, what you’re thinking. You have a picture in your mind about what you’re thinking about. And if you are used to thinking about your habits, thinking about what you don’t like about yourself, thinking about what you did yesterday, that screwed up the rest of the day, and you’re just-
Corrine: And thinking about what you don’t like about these habits, that you’re trying to put [crosstalk]
Kathy: Right. You’re just dog piling the brain visualization practice on the bad stuff. This is just fascinating. It takes effort to visualize the future. To add a picture to a thought you have about what you want to happen. It takes a little bit of intention to do that.
Corrine: Yeah. And when I think, it takes like a lot of intention, I mean, it’s intentional thinking, I think it’s one of the skills that we are not really taught. All of us. I mean, all of us over the age of 40 are not really taught a lot of intentional thinking. We’re just told what to do. And then we’re just questioned, “Well, why can’t you do it? I told you.” We’re not really ever taught the power of our brain. We’re not really taught anything about how do you visualize, how do you watch your mind? How do you pay attention to what’s going on in your head? Especially when it comes to losing weight, that’s just skills that we’re never told. We’re literally told by every single person in the diet, “Look at Weight Watchers, look at Jenny Craig, they ship you food.
Weight Watchers gives you an app and they tell you to count these points.” And they’re always telling you what to do, but they’re not telling you how to get it done. Lots of us know things what to do. We need to know, “But how do I override when I don’t want to do it? And how do I sit at night and not eat when I’m in that habit pattern?” It’s not enough to just know what to do. That’s why that’s the first part of our entire, No BS Weightloss Program. Part one of four, of the four big pillar and modules is, number one, I will tell you exactly what to do. And two, three and four, we got to overcome you. [crosstalk] it’s three rounds of different variations of first, how do I get you to even understand how you’re thinking?
Before you can change thinking, you got to know which thinking’s not working. So you know what to be replacing. And then next, we got to work on your overeating and the habits of that and the brain science of that and why your brain asked for it. And how do you feel the urges to eat, but not respond to them without … most people this is what they’ll do. “Well, if I’m going to over it, I’m just going to have to willpower my way through it. I’m just going to have to not do it.” In order to long-term actually lose weight, you don’t want to spend the rest of your life having to deny yourself food.
That’s the only thing that happens when you do it that way. You have to learn how to allow urges to come in and you’re not fighting with them, that you are reconditioning your brain to where you’re talking differently around food and stuff and … so and then the last part is just all the other bullshit that comes along for the ride. You got to have a better relationship with the scale and your body and all these other things, because it’s like, “All right, here’s my crappy thinking. I really understand. Now I know how to watch out for it. Now I know how to change it. Now I understand all my food urges and why I’m overeating.” But what about all the other stuff that I’m thinking that’s like … you got to get past that too. That’s why I love the habit of [inaudible] breaking, was it breaking the habit of you or …
Kathy: Breaking the habit of being you, yeah.
Corrine: [inaudible] I’m always talking about that [crosstalk] Yes, S book title that was ever done. I remember telling my mother-in-law and she was like, “I don’t want to break the habit of being me.” And I said, “Yeah, but you’re one of the few. The majority of us are walking around, not being our best friend all day long.” We’re just like, “Could have done that better. Wooh! Look at you, little too much down there in the thigh land.”
Kathy: Oh my goodness.
Corrine: But you know what I mean.
Kathy: Yeah, I do.
Corrine: In order to lose my weight I literally had to break the habit of being myself because being myself was not that great. It was full of not liking myself very much. Always thinking that people were better than me. I really remember always thinking people were just better than me. I don’t think I’m better than other people now. I just think I’m amazing. And that took me years and years of doing, because it’s … we’re just not taught to do that. People want you to not … don’t be amazing. Just be humble. It’s like we can be humble and we can also really be proud of ourselves and love ourselves.
And I just think that for women especially, we have all been told to play small for so long that a lot of us probably need to be balls out, amazing out loud to get other people brave enough to even take a second look at themselves. So that was a little off tangent, but so let’s just talk about how do you visualize what you want? My visualization practice. I don’t know if you have one, I have one. We’ll just go into that because … wait, I didn’t even ask, do you have one?
Kathy: I was thinking about that as you were talking about the [crosstalk] This is really intriguing to me. I don’t know that I have a visualization practice. I do have an intentional thinking practice. And-
Corrine: That’s very similar. I mean, that’s basically-
Kathy: I think it is because when I’m writing down, for instance, my three goals for the day. I do that every morning. And they are usually things these days, with the what I’m doing, is there are daily goals. Things I want to know that I have accomplished today, like 64 ounces of water is one. A lot of times I’ll have a work goal. I don’t remember what today’s work goal was, but it was some big task. I wanted to make sure I could check my box at the end of the day. And I think that-
Corrine: You might want to check that list.
Kathy: [inaudible] really. I think when I’m doing those, I do those the night before. So I can go to bed thinking about my goals. I think that is a form of visualization.
Corrine: It is.
Kathy: But I think I could be more intentional about actually seeing the picture of that happening in my mind. Okay, so it’s-
Corrine: I think you bring up a good point. There’s the intentionality that you have where you’re designing your day and just the … like for all of you we talked about on a previous podcast, paper thinking, that’s what Kathy’s talking about. She’s doing paper thinking each day. That’s very purposeful. She’s writing about what she wants for the day. Not just a to-do list, but how I want to think, what I want to accomplish today. At the end of the day, this is how I want to feel. So we teach inside our membership, very intentional weight loss thinking. And we do a lot of it on paper, because if you’re … the problem with your brain is it’s got all those observational drive-bys all day long. [crosstalk] If you’re trying to figure out how you want to be for the day and stuff, it’s competing with the noise of the other stuff too.
So often it gets very drowned out and stuff. Putting it on paper and doing paper thinking and being intentional with your thinking, allows it, your brain to see it without the noise. It’s now focused on it. And it’s like … literally think about it. It’s like looking down on it and seeing it all there. That in and of itself is like a huge step one for a lot of people. Because what it does is when you write and stuff, a lot of us, our brain sees things in imagery or pictures, not everyone does. In fact, not everybody can visualize. So for those of you who can’t visualize, especially in images and stuff, and see yourself doing it, paper thinking is a great way for you to get this process started. Like my son he looked it up the other day. He was telling me, he’s like, “I can’t … when you talk about telling your girls to visualize and stuff, I can’t see pictures and stuff in my head.”
And I was like, “Really?” And he’s like, “Yeah, I looked it up on the internet.” He studied it, got a word for it. About 10% of the population can’t do it. And one of my dear friends and pod-casters, Carluith, she can’t either. She brought this up at a meeting that we were having and talked about it. And I was like, “I can’t believe that I’ve heard this twice in one week.” I’d just never heard of it. So for all of you who it’s not easy to visualize, or maybe you’re not comfortable doing it yet, just being intentional on some paper every day about what I’m going to eat, what I want to think when I’m eating, what might get in my way today, how am I going to overcome it? Just doing that right there, I swear to God makes 50% of weight loss so much easier to do. So much easier, because you’re not leaving your brain up to the whims of the moment and how you’re feeling.
I don’t want to be deciding my dinner when I’m stressed out after a long day. I want to decide my dinner in the morning, when I have my best self in mind. When I can look at the entire day and make choices that in that moment, when I’m tired and overwhelmed, I might not make. I might not even think of because I’m, got all that noise in my head. But if you want to take it up another level, this is how I do it. So I write, I do very similar to Cathy. I write my goals every day, I write a lot. I do a lot of journaling first thing in the morning. I find it very helpful for me to have a mind plan for the day, not just having a food plan and a work plan, but I call it my mind plan.
This is where I’ve decided here are my goals. Here’s my future. Here’s what I want for me. What I try to do is pick something each day off of all my goals and spend about 20 seconds. It doesn’t take any more than that. 20 seconds seeing myself there already enjoying have accomplished it. And then I pick one thing that I’m doing for that day to get me closer to that, which a lot of times it’s the tiniest of steps. So if I want to … let’s pretend you want to lose 10 pounds in the next, say, 20 weeks. You want to visualize your … if you know that today is a day where you’re going to be rushed and whatever, you might want to visualize yourself, being very intentional about drinking water. A lot of people are like, “What? You got to visualize that?” Blah, blah.
It’s like, Yeah, you do. Because if you don’t visualize yourself, actually like, “Okay, I’m going to be on the road and I’m going to have to stop at a gas station to get some water,” whatever it’s going to be. You don’t see yourself doing it and overcoming being dehydrated for a day. Then that dehydration snowballs into probably overeating at night, to catch up from being dehydrated. It snowballs into not sleeping as well through the night, because maybe when you get home, now you’re super thirsty and you eat a lot and you drink a lot. Then you don’t sleep as well. And then that jacks you up. People just don’t think about the importance of the intentionality behind even the smallest of things. So I always like to pick one goal and I like to visualize myself, have accomplished it. And I do that for about 20 seconds.
And then I pick one action step that’s like, “What could I do today to get me one step closer?” I then picture myself getting it done for the day. And do this every day. And when it comes to work, I always pick something each day that I know that I need to work on. I always like to pick that one action that I’m going to do for the day, that’s going to be the hardest one for me to do and the hardest one for, talk myself into.
So I always pick something and visualize myself not wanting to do it. And then I visualize myself centering myself. What I’m going to tell myself in the moment. And then I visualize myself starting one small little thing to get the ball rolling on whatever it is. You can do the same thing. Let’s say you notice that you overeat every night, then you can set up the one thing I can do tonight to make it easier for me to not overeat is rather than cleaning my kitchen tonight, because I tend to once I cleaned the kitchen notice I just wander my little happy ass over to my pantry. I’m going to get up 10 minutes early in the morning. And I’m just going to clean my dishes in the morning.
Just not going to do it tonight. I’m going to break the routine. I’ll clean my dishes in the morning so I can see myself leaving the kitchen after I eat, not being around my food anymore, moving to in a completely different place than I normally sit in the house, seeing myself think about the dishes, wanting to do the usual routine, and then telling myself tonight, I’m just trying something different to see if it has an impact on my overeating. And then you watch yourself have the conversation. You watch yourself not eat. And then you watch yourself go to bed. And you do that as part of a practice to get better at overcoming things that are stopping you from your weight loss. So it’s not just about visualizing yourself at 150 pounds wearing a size eight. It’s about visualizing yourself doing things that you need to do for yourself, overcoming things that are getting in your way and doing it with intentionality. Do you have anything you want to add?
Kathy: Yeah. You said one time. When I coach people, especially my private clients, I coach, I teach them what you taught me and that is that picturing in your mind or visualization, whatever you want to call it, is practice for your brain. So if you visualize yourself, like you said leaving the kitchen after dinner, getting up 10 minutes early and doing the dishes in the morning, your brain doesn’t know that you haven’t already done that. If there’s a full visualization going on. If you’re really watching yourself do that, your brain doesn’t know that you haven’t actually done it. It’s already just chopped up one for okay, we’ve done that once. Let’s try it again. I think that’s pretty cool too.
Corrine: Yeah. It’s like that study we were talking about earlier by that doctor, we call him Dr. B. Now, because I can’t pronounce his name. Dr. B, that was the thing, is that the people that saw just almost as much progress, literally 24% were the people who practiced physically, 23% improvement with the people who just practiced in their mind.
Kathy: Yeah, that’s fascinating.
Corrine: It just goes to show you how powerful our brains are. Our brains are so powerful. I think a lot of us just need simple ways to tap into how to make life a little bit easier on ourselves. And I think that this is like one of the easiest weight loss things we’ve ever taught. It really doesn’t take any time. It just takes your willingness to just do something new and try. If nothing else, guys, just try it out for two to three weeks.
And I would recommend, if you’re going to try it out and you want to see results, think about this study. And I can’t remember if they did it for six weeks. I wish I had written all this down in the page number of the book. But I’m almost a 100% sure it came from the Big Leap, is pick one thing. One thing you want to get better at when it comes to your weight loss. One thing you want to see yourself doing that you’re like, “If I could do this, I know that I could do it for the rest of my life. I want to get better at it. This is what the person I want to be,” blah, blah, blah. Visualize that for just six weeks and start with on day one, say like, “On a scale of one to 10, here’s how I think I’m showing up for it now.”
And just give yourself a little rating. One being, I stink. 10 being like, “I can’t even believe I need to visualize. I’m so good at it.” And then just give yourself a rating. And then at the end of six weeks, see where you’re at. See if it did make a difference. It’d be interesting if anybody does it you all should hit us up on social and let us know that you did it and what the results are. I would just be fascinated to know this.
Kathy: Mm-hmm (affirmative) I’m going to come up with something that I’m going to visualize for the next six weeks. I’ll think about this.
Corrine: If you do, we’ll podcast on the Cathy visualization project.
Corrine: All right-
Kathy: I’m going to come up with something.
Corrine: You will.
Corrine: All right, everybody. You all have a good week. If you liked this episode, get out your phone. You’re probably listening to it on your phone anyway. Screenshot this episode, share it on your social. Tag me Corrine Crabtree, and use hashtag No BS Woman, so that we can see you. You never know when I’m going to come in and be like, “What’s up?” And I know Cathy follows the No BS hashtag. No BS Woman hashtag, so. All right, you all have a good week. We’ll see you soon.