What is the most important thing to know as a post-op bariatric patient?

This question comes up a lot.. It’s funny because I can’t answer with just one thing. When I think about the importance … I think it’s a JOURNEY. It’s not one thing, it’s everything. 

So, for today, I decided to sum up some of the most important things that I see as a clinician and as a patient for the post-op bariatric process. If any of this resonates, leave me a comment below.

1. Slow and steady repeat action beats one-day hustles. When you're not this journey.. it's not about doing something huge or awesome ONCE.. it's about creating little baby habits that over time create your lasting lifestyle change.

2. Back to basics is always important when you hit a stall

3. Release the judgment of yourself.. that won't change anything.. you've likely been doing that all along even before surgery and how has that worked out? Instead ask how you can be more loving, kind, supportive, etc.

4. Food is 80%, Exercise is 20% - you can't exercise away bad food choices. Just remember that you can always 'begin again' after a mistake.

5. You are totally fooling yourself if you think mistakes WON'T happen or that you WON'T cave to a poor food choice EVER.. the goal is to get better at making better choices not to live from a perfectionistic state. Reality: mistakes, missteps, and oopsies happen.. pick yourself up.. dust yourself off and redirect back to the path you want to BE on.

6. Repeat of #3.. beating yourself up doesn't help you get farther along in your journey. In fact, it may cause you to eat out of spite because you may not be able to deal with all the negative emotions thrown onto the pile.. Remember kindness, love, compassion, and patience (along with success).. is a practice.. it's not a destination..

7. Your old tribe may not get you.. and that's okay. Find your tribe.. there is a saying.. "if you want to go fast, go alone, if you want to go far, go together." - African Proverb In reality, if you go alone, you may get somewhere fast, but you might soon go back to your old ways due to loneliness, boredom, and a welling up of emotions.. Find your tribe, love them hard, and be involved. This is your journey.. live it fully and bring peeps along for the ride.

8. Feeling is inevitable.. if you try to continue to stuff down the feelings.. you'll end up with transfer addiction or other poor habits. Start looking deeper into what you are trying to avoid.. and when you look at it, deal with it, and release it.. you'll grow into the person you've always be longing to be..

9. Put yourself first.. if you continue to put everyone else first, you'll wonder why you aren't getting anywhere. It's not about the time, but the energy and effort you put in.. if you are too busy helping others, you'll forget about yourself and this whole process will be for nothing.

10. This journey is not about the weight but all the things you haven't been able to be, do, or have as a result of the weight.. and when you recognize that life is more than food and weight loss, you'll open yourself up to a new way of living and being.. This is why I'll ask so often, 'what do you want?' it's because once you've walked this journey and dug deep inside, the weight is only a byproduct of the work you've done, and you GET to live the life you've always wanted to live because you being to take a CHANCE on you, you begin to BELIEVE in you, your dreams, and the pure potentiality that you never saw before..

As a reminder this is a lifestyle change.

Share your thoughts below. What has this journey been like for you?

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