OK, I’ve been wanting to post about the damage and deceit of what’s called “The Deprivation Mindset”, but as usual I couldn’t stop with just a simple post.  So, I’ve had to break it down into a series so you, my readers, don’t get lost in another one of my long-winded posts.  So here we go with Part 1.

Feeling a Little Deprived ‘Cause You Can’t Have That Chocolate Covered Donut?

The first few days and weeks of a diet, even the first few months for some of us, are filled with excitement, motivation and optimism.  But as we lose a few pounds and become happier and healthier, there is sometimes a tendency for our excitement, motivation and optimism to fade.  It’s at this point that we are in danger of sabotaging ourselves by losing our focus, blurring our boundaries and getting sloppy with our newly learned, healthy, low-carb nutritional lifestyle.  This mindset, left unchecked, can quickly lead us right back down the road to our old destructive eating habits.

One of the underlying causes of this derailing behavior is the old, “I deserve it…it’s not fair…everybody else is eating it…I earned it…I feel so deprived” mindset.  This childish way of thinking, called the Deprivation Mindset, could just as easily and accurately be called the Failure Mindset, according to Dr. Stephen Gullo, author of The Thin Commandments Diet.  It is by our very own deceptive thoughts that we conceive such damaging notions, and by our very own self-deprecating words that we perpetuate and reinforce those thoughts until they give birth to compulsive, emotional, mindless over-eating!  It is a childish way of thinking that says, “any and all boundaries and guidelines are bad and unnecessary!” At times I’ve heard that child within me screaming and throwing a “fit”, demanding that I have anything and everything I want to eat…regardless of the consequences!  If you’ve ever struggled with weight control, then you’ve probably experienced the same “fits” from the “child within you” as well.

Don’t feel bad, because the fact is, dieting has always been associated with deprivation.  It’s kind of like a “virus” that infects you the minute you start dieting.  I actually hate the term “diet”, because it implies a temporary way of eating instead of a healthy nutritional lifestyle of weight control and maintenance.  And that “temporary way of losing a few pounds” is exactly what makes you feel deprived.  While you are stuck eating some tiny, despicable looking, detestable tasting “food-like-substance”, all your friends are eating as many of those luscious, delicious, tempting, sinful, sugary, carb-laden treats they care to stuff their face with.  Therefore, in your own mind, you feel deprived!  And that my friend is the “Deprivation Mindset” in a nutshell…or shall we say, “The Failure Mindset”?

“We all have power over the feeling of deprivation — the ability to control it, decrease it, even extinguish it — because the source of it begins and ends with you.”  ~~Dr. Stephen Gullo

Discovering this hidden way of destructive thinking, and knowing that I have the power to destroy it before it destroys me has been one of the most empowering strategies I have learned about successful weight control.  I can truthfully say that “a light really came on” when I read about this concept in Dr. Gullo’s book.  If you have the book you’ll find this topic as “The Eighth Thin Commandment: Stop Feeling Deprived”.

Overcoming the Deprivation Mindset — Part 2

Overcoming the Deprivation Mindset — Part 3

Overcoming the Deprivation Mindset — Part 4

There Really is Life Without Donuts!

Ron, aka The Former Donut Junkie