How to shed your inhibitions when you’re out having fun
Chances are, you’re on your weight-loss journey, you’re feeling healthier, and you know you look better than you have in a long time. But your confidence might not be quite where you want it to be. ‘When you’re losing weight, your attention is focused on your appearance and the way your body is changing,’ says psychologist Honey Langcaster-James. ‘This can make you more mindful and anxious about social situations, even if you’re looking your best ever.’ Don’t let low confidence spoil the festive season – try this advice from Honey and some fellow members…
Day to day: Stay active – when I joined WW and the pounds started dropping off, I also joined a gym and started moving more. In turn, this boosted my social confidence. After losing 10lb, I met my partner, Matt. When we started chatting, I thought he was just being nice, but we clicked and I quickly realised he liked me for who I was. Hannah, 3st 6lb lost
Getting ready: Have your hair done or go for a makeover at a department store’s beauty counter – small tweaks can make such a difference to your self-confidence without drawing too much attention.
Before an event: Don’t assume the worst. I used to believe people must think I was lazy because I was fat. If I couldn’t get out of going to a party, I would be very anxious and, in my head, I would play out how the night would go, and plan to leave early. Getting healthy changed all that. Now that I feel good about my appearance, I no longer get anxious before social events (and managed to dance the night away on my wedding night!) Aaron, 4st 7lb lost
On the dance floor: Remember that everyone’s just concentrating on enjoying themselves. But you could get into the centre of the floor, surrounded by others, so you don’t feel you’re being watched from the sides.
Debuting a new outfit: Try wearing it at home for a while before a big night, to get used to how it looks and feels. Wear something you’re comfortable in, rather than an outfit that constricts you or pushes you too far out of your comfort zone – it’s good to go for glam, but you should also feel like ‘you’.
When you don’t know anyone: Look for someone else who seems to be on his or her own and strike up a conversation. Remember that others have concerns and anxieties too, even if not about their weight – tell yourself that you’re all in the same boat. They will probably be feeling nervous too, and may be relieved you started chatting first!