If we asked you how happy you are with your current weight and body shape what would you say?
If you’re like most people, you’re probably not really happy. Maybe you’ve tried to do something about your weight in the past or perhaps you’ve just never found the right time to focus on weight loss. So for now, you’re just coasting along or going with the flow.
This is a place we call no-man’s land and it’s one of the most dangerous places you can be.
What is no-man’s land?
No man’s land is when you’re not really happy, but you’re not unhappy enough to do anything about your situation.
It’s where people think they feel comfortable, but it’s one of the worst places you can be.
Living in no-man’s land holds you back from reaching your full potential. While you’re not happy with where you are, you justify your situation by comparing yourself to other people and telling yourself that your weight problem isn’t as bad as theirs. Or you try to convince yourself that you’re happy enough as you are.
Maybe you even tell yourself the lie that you’ll do something about your weight “when things settle down” or when “you’re not so busy”. These little lies soften your pain for a while because you believe that your situation will change…one day.
But the truth is that ‘one day’ never comes because you’re too busy numbing yourself to your reality and living a life of mediocrity and complacency. And while you’re fooling yourself, your weight problem only gets worse.
Why do people live in no man’s land?
No-man’s land isn’t too much fun and it’s certainly not a positive place to be. So why do people keep living there?
They’re not in enough pain
Most people live in no-man’s land because they are not in enough pain to take action. While they are not exactly happy, they’re not terribly unhappy either, so they put up with their situation because the pain isn’t bad enough to make them do something different.
People are reactive instead of proactive
Most people are reactive instead of proactive, which is a product of the diet mindset. That means they wait until something goes wrong before they take action. While they wait, they justify their inaction by telling themselves they’re not as bad as some. When it comes to weight loss, people often only take action when their doctor tells them they are at risk of having a heart attack or developing diabetes, or if they don’t do something, they’ll need gastric surgery.
To have the life you really desire you need to take action and do things you’ve never done before. However, this can be scary. A lot of people live in no-man’s land because they are afraid. People are afraid of many things — being exposed as a fraud, being judged, being abandoned, afraid of the work involved in losing weight, afraid of making mistakes, or afraid of failing and what that might mean about them. So, to protect themselves, they continue to play small. They avoid taking action, trying new things or committing to anything, because if they don’t try, they can’t fail, and they can’t be exposed. You can read more about fear in our blog Why fear is preventing your weight loss.
Limiting beliefs and identity
We all have the potential to achieve anything we want. However, our beliefs and identity determine what we end up with. Limiting beliefs have a negative impact on your life because they put boundaries and limitations on what you believe is possible. They can keep you stuck in no-man’s land and prevent you from taking action because you don’t believe you’ll succeed anyway. You can read more about this and how to change it in our blog How your limiting beliefs and identity impacts your weight.
People in no-man’s land are surrounded by other people in the same situation. They’re either complaining and justifying why they continue to stay where they are, or gossiping about other successful people, yet not being willing to do anything about their situation. This is a bit like a group of people being stuck down a hole, complaining about being stuck, but pulling down anyone who tries to find a way out, and telling them it’s not so bad down there after all. This toxicity can prevent people from taking action and keep them stuck in no-man’s land. You can read more about toxic relationships in our blog How toxic relationships impact your weight and happiness.
Those who live in no-man’s land have low self-worth. This means they don’t believe they are worth investing in, don’t believe they deserve to lose weight and have the life they desire, won’t do anything out of their comfort zone, and don’t believe they are ‘good enough’ to escape their situation. They tend to justify their inaction by telling themselves they’ll wait for the right time to do something. The only problem is, ‘the right time’ never comes along.
How no-man’s land affects your weight
Living in no man’s land is effectively being complacent which affects your weight in many ways. Here are the main reasons why.
Not taking action
People in no-man’s land never take action because they are never in enough pain. They wait until something goes wrong and then they act. When it comes to weight, this is often in the form of a health scare or becoming so overweight and unhappy with themselves that they have what we call a ‘snap point’ and hit rock bottom. Instead of continually working on themselves and addressing their habits, so they can be healthy and handle whatever life throws their way, people in no-man’s land do nothing until they are forced to. But when a crisis comes along they realise that they are unable to cope and are in a world of pain that they’ve never known before.
Not confronting your fears
We all have fears, but the people who have the body, confidence and life they’ve always dreamed of, are the ones who confront their fears. When you don’t confront your fears you’ll continue to make choices based on your fears. For example, if you’re afraid of being seen for who you are and where you’re at, you’ll continue to do things to hide. However, if you’re always hiding, you can’t accept the reality of your situation and ask for help. Confronting our fears helps us to become the person we need to be, so we can reach our weight loss goals and unless you confront your fears, you’ll always be stuck in the diet cycle.
People-pleasing instead of putting yourself first
To lose weight and keep it off you need to learn to put yourself first. Unfortunately, many people, especially those in no-man’s land struggle with this. Instead, their low-self worth means they are people-pleasers who run around and spend all their time and energy doing what others want, instead of doing what’s best for them. When it comes to weight loss, this translates into not prioritising or being consistent with exercise and training, not making time for healthy eating or weekly food prep, and not prioritising sleep and rest, all of which will help you lose weight. You can read more about this in our blog Why you struggle to put yourself first.
Not investing in yourself
People who live in no-man’s land never live up to their potential or have the life they truly desire because they never invest in themselves. They also don’t believe they are worth investing in, so they only choose cheap fad diets and quick-fix solutions because that’s all they feel they deserve. However, diets don’t work and only lead to more weight gain. Low self-worth also leads to a host of behaviours that sabotage their weight loss which you can read about in our blog How low self-worth affects your weight.
You’re not growing
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. In other words, the people you spend the most time with shape who you are. When you surround yourself with toxic people you’re exposed to toxic habits and behaviours which don’t support your personal growth or your weight loss. The truth is, if you’re not growing and addressing the habits that have led you to become overweight, you’ll never have the body, confidence and lifestyle you desire. In fact, you’ll only continue to gain weight.
Taking action that reinforces your identity
Whatever identity we have, we tend to take actions to reinforce that identity, because we like to prove to ourselves that we’re right. For example, a lot of women believe that they don’t deserve to be a ‘yummy mummy’, or they think that mums with teenage kids all look overweight or buy certain clothes. These limiting beliefs influence the action they take along with how consistent they are with their actions. This then determines their results which ironically reinforces their limiting beliefs that mums of teenagers are overweight.
Weight loss self-sabotage
It’s painful to live in no-man’s land which is why so many people numb themselves — either through binge eating or emotional eating, drinking, overworking, or being distracted by social media. When they see other people succeeding at weight loss, they feel resentful and jealous and will engage in gossip as a way to feel better about themselves. All of these behaviours not only keep them stuck in their unhappy place, but they sabotage any weight loss attempt and ultimately lead to weight gain. Just click the links above to find out why.
Long-term weight gain
People in no-man’s land think that living an average life is okay, especially when they compare themselves to others who appear to be worse off. They also tend to tell themselves that a little bit of weight gain as they get older is nothing to be concerned about, because that happens to everyone. But add that up over 10 or 20 years. How does that make you feel? To get a glimpse into what your future could be read our blog Choose your own adventure.
How to escape from no-man’s land
Confront your fears
While you live in fear, you’ll always be stuck in no-man’s land. While you continue to worry about what others think and say about you, or about not getting everything perfect, or making mistakes and failing, you’ll never take action which means you’ll never achieve your goals and your dreams.
Change your beliefs and identity
Limiting beliefs put boundaries and limitations on what you believe is possible. As well as preventing you from taking action they can cause you to self-sabotage your efforts because you don’t believe you’ll succeed anyway. To have the body you want, you need to change your identity and drop the limiting beliefs that are holding you back. Our blog How your limiting beliefs and identity impacts your weight will show you how to do this.
Find the right support network
The right support network is crucial if you want to succeed at anything in life, especially weight loss. Ditch the toxic relationships and the people who are keeping you in no-man’s land by enabling your habits, and start hanging out with people who have escaped and are succeeding. After all, success leaves clues. Read our blog Why you need a weight loss support network to succeed to find out what to look for in a support network.
Build your self-worth
People in no-man’s land suffer from low self-worth which keeps them stuck in the same old patterns of self-sabotage. However, when you build your self-worth, you’ll begin to see that you do deserve the life of your dreams, and you are worth investing in. Once you realise this, you will be able to take action towards having the body and life you’ve always wanted, and you’ll begin to move out of no-man’s land, and into the bright future that awaits you. Read our blog How to build self-worth so you can lose weight for good to find out how.
There’s nothing wrong with being happy in your life, but if you are just settling and getting by in no-man’s land, you have a problem. If you’re ready to embrace the life you’ve always wanted, we can help.