Frustrated Client? Conversations About Weight Loss Road Blocks

Weight loss is a goal for a lot of clients, or, more accurately it’s a goal for a lot of people.  Weight loss is hard.  Weight maintenance is harder.  On the journey, there are usually setbacks and roadblocks.  The roadblocks could be lack of motivation, frustration, stress, or even change of life events. We, as Registered Dietitians, are experts in food and nutrition, but we wear counseling hats when we work one-on-one with clients. Roadblock conversations are a windows to take a look and be mindful of our approach.  Questions should be asked to evoke or draw out rather than impose ideas or exercising our “right” reflex.  Here are some examples that have worked for my clients:

  • What challenges are you facing on a day to day basis?  What are some realistic actions that will start to help the situation? (key word realistic)
  • What are some pros and cons of being at this roadblock?
  • You’ve been successful before so you know you are capable. Does that make you feel confident?
  • Is this goal still a priority in your life right now?
  • On a scale of 1 to 10, how confident do you feel you can overcome this roadblock?

Or use this quote:

“I’ve missed more than 9,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.” – Michael Jordan

This should help re-inspire roadblocked clients. Here is a valuable resource on motivational interviewing, which the above is based on to a large extent:

https://www.umass.edu/studentlife/sites/default/files/documents/pdf/Motivational_Interviewing_Definition_Principles_Approach.pdf

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