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Happiness isn't a number on the scale

Sunday, August 25, 2019

We have all thought about getting healthy. If I lose 10 pounds, I’ll be happy, if I lose 100 pounds I’d be happy…

Happiness isn’t tied to weight, and it shouldn’t be either. Happiness is tied to how we feel about ourselves. For me, happiness is getting up early in the morning, taking a walk and feeling more confident in who I am. For me, happiness is telling my dog Biscuit “Give me a kiss”, and her snarling and then sticking her tongue out to gently touch my finger.

When you lose weight, You’ll enjoy more energy for the people and activities you love. You may have more or preferable clothing choices. You’ll have a better chance of kicking many prescription drugs to the curb (and save a little dough in doing so). To boot, you’re likely to experience less chronic pain and a better night’s sleep, etc., etc. All that said, let’s be clear on something: weight loss isn’t a guaranteed stimulus to your personal happiness. A University College of London study followed nearly 2000 people who received instruction for improving health and managing weight. At end of 4 years, 71% remained the same weight, 15% had gained at least 5% body weight and 14% had lost at least 5% body weight. You’d imagine that the 14% group would be the happiest of the bunch, but not so. In fact, they were twice as likely to be depressed as those in the other groups. Even when the study team accounted for health conditions and key demographic and psychological (e.g. bereavement) variables, the weight loss group still fared the worst in terms of personal happiness and overall well-being.

Most people only want one thing, and that is to be truly happy. However, I am going to tell you right now, happiness isn’t going to happen until you stop equating it to a number on the scale. Matter of fact, I am not writing this for all my readers, I am reminding myself and all of you that your happiness isn’t connected to a number on the scale – it’s about how you feel on the inside.
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