We are talking about the mind of the bariatric patient.
I want to talk briefly about the mindset of the bariatric patient
Choosing to have bariatric surgery or weight loss surgery is a big decision. It’s a way to lose weight and to correct many health problems that are related to that weight rather quickly. However, long-term success with bariatric surgery can be quite complicated.
The mindset of any bariatric patient is one of the most important parts of success.
As I’ve worked with patients who have had bariatric surgery one of the things that becomes the most common difficulty is understanding how this major change in weight loss affects their mindset. A growth mindset could be defined as the willingness to be open-minded about the changes that are happening in your body. A fixed-minded is wanting something that you’re never going to have.
Let me give you an example. Whether the surgery was for health issues or for just losing weight the same thinking seems to be true. Most patients who lose a major amount of weight and have a body transformation have to come to terms with this new body that they now own.
If you’ve never been thin then you don’t know what it’s like to be thin. Your brain doesn’t know what it’s like to be thin. Others don’t know what it’s like to see you as thin. Changing the way we think about your body isn’t quite that easy. It takes a new paradigm of thinking. Or a new mindset.
I experience quite often the bariatric patient who didn’t like their body before they had surgery. After surgery, they still struggle with lacking their body. Accepting the imperfections before and after is so important. Not having unrealistic expectations, or a Disney World view of the Miracle of Weigh Loss changing my life forever, without hard work and determination, etc.
Let me say that a different way. If you already don’t like your body before surgery, you may still have trouble liking your body after surgery.
None of us choose the body that we come to this earth with. We don’t get to stand in heaven and say I want a thin or a medium or a large bone body. We just don’t get the choice. Those choices are made long before we get here.
What we do have is the responsibility to take care of, nurture and nourish the body that we own.
The view of any major body change must be an open mindset. You need to be willing to think about yourself in a completely different way. Being able to own this new body without being judgmental or be condescending or even disliking your new body is very important.
The growth mindset is the most powerful mindset you can have. It means that you are willing to, at any moment, change the way you think about yourself. It means that you’re open to new suggestions or new ideas or views of who you are becoming. It means that you’re always learning to accept the things that you cannot change and willing to change the things that you can if you want to. A growth mindset is the most powerful mindset to have for successful bariatric surgery.
A fixed mindset is where we do not want anything but what we want. A fixed mindset is directly focused on demanding or insisting that you have to be a certain size or at a certain weight. This type of fixed mindset creates lots of difficulties because if you don’t accomplish the goals that you set for yourself then the difficulties set in.
A fixed mindset is focused on what you want without any other options. A fixed mindset is where you’ve decided that you want to be something that you are not going to ever have.
A growth mindset is a willingness to accept where your body lands after the surgery. A growth mindset is a willingness to accept the things that change about your body and accept the things that do not change about your body.
A growth mindset is a radical acceptance of what is always true about your body. A growth mindset does not mean that you cannot change your body it means that you are accepting what you cannot change. This paradigm shift is very important and moving forward.
We can support this process of learning.
Mindfully Simple Life