Deborah Smith is a positive psychologist specialising in the science of happiness and mindfulness.
She has more than 25 years’ experience as a psychotherapist and is here to help, so email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
I’m proud of my body since losing weight, but frustrated to see my partner take no interest in his health. How can I help him? Amy Wall, Hull
You’re clearly feeling more confident and healthier since losing weight. It’s a shame that your partner doesn’t look after his body, but the question is why? You might simply think he’s lazy, but there’s always a reason why people don’t care enough to eat healthily or exercise.
The key to improving his attitude is trying to help him understand it. He needs to be aware of your frustration about is inaction, so try to talk to him openly about how you feel, and speak from a place of love and concern. Sometimes we want to do something on a conscious level, but our subconscious seems to be stopping us and we don’t understand why. It’s possible that he just doesn’t realise he’s fallen into bad habits, but it may be that he needs professional help to show him how to unblock whatever is stopping him from making positive changes.
Resentment is such a harmful emotion, and as you say, it’s started to affect your relationship, so if you really want things to work between you, try to let go of it for both your sakes. Perhaps, rather than thinking negatively about his appearance, give him a chance to be proactive, with love, compassion and support. Inspire him and involve him in your plans too – suggest you cook healthy meals together, or do some activities that will get you both moving.
TIPS FOR HEALTHY SELF-TALK
STOP NEGATIVE SELF-TALK
In everything you say to yourself, be aware of the potential of creating a self-fulfilling prophecy. In other words, the negative things you say to yourself are more likely to happen if they reinforce your pessimistic point of view.
DON’T LIMIT YOUR CHOICES
If you repeatedly say things like, ‘nothing goes right with me’, ‘I’ll never be able to do it’, or ‘I’m too tired to try something new’, then you’ve already made up your mind.
TURN NEGATIVES INTO POSITIVES
Tell yourself that you CAN do it, or it WILL go right and that you DO have the energy! Go for it!
Mantra: ‘dare to live without limits’
Sometimes we need to be brave enough to push ourselves beyond what we think is possible. This way, we can find a new ‘possible’. I challenge you to try it!