“Thousands of years ago, our ancestors were exposed to immediate environmental threats that today we no longer need to worry about — predators, for example—and being more attentive to these negative stimuli played a useful role in survival."

— Psychologist Catherine Moore

Our brain doesn't want us to be happy.

Centuries ago, this negativity bias served an important purpose: survival. That’s why it made sense to be worried about safety and survival. The bad news is that our brains are still wired similarly, even though most of us aren’t concerned about survival anymore. Instead of saving us from wild animals and death, our brains now try to protect us from all sorts of negative experiences — no matter if that’s a heartbreak, or an embarrassing moment at a party.

...Our brain also doesn’t like surprises — that’s why we often think about the next bad thing and prefer being well prepared for negative things that might happen, even if they’re unrealistic.

that’s why we sometimes make a mountain out of a molehill...

and turn small struggles into huge problems. The good news is that we can change the way we think, behave, and feel, even if the #1 priority of our brains is to keep us alive–not happy.

We're the boss of our mind

The fact that our brain is more receptive to negativity doesn’t mean that we’re meant to live a negative life. We can choose our thoughts, which leads to changes in our emotions, which changes the way we act and the results we create. We can’t always control the thoughts that bounce around in our mind. But we can indeed control what we focus on.

“You’re not your brain; you’re the CEO of your brain. You can’t control everything that goes on in ‘Mind, Inc.’ But you can decide which projects get funded with your attention and action.”

— Psychologist, Eric Barker

Ask ourself if the thought or concern is useful.

According to Eric Barker, an effective strategy to control our thoughts and better manage our emotions is to ask ourself if a thought is useful.

Asking yourself, “Is this useful?” helps you assess whether the thought deserves your attention or not. According to Barker, “If the worry is reasonable, do something about it, if it’s irrational or out of your control, recognize that. Just making a decision like this can reduce worry and anxiety." Whenever we pause for a moment and question the usefulness of a thought, we’re consciously deciding whether we want to dedicate time and space to that thought.

Pay attention to it or replace it.

Paying more attention to it might be a good idea. And if it’s not, we can replace those useless, negative thoughts with other, more productive thoughts. Above all, asking ourselves if a thought is useful helps us get a neutral perspective on our emotions.

Struggling to let go of the useless thoughts? Try this: Write your negative thoughts in your journal, tear out the page, crumple it up, and throw it away — physically and mentally.

The fact that our brain is more receptive to negativity doesn’t mean that we're meant to live a negative life. We can choose our thoughts, which lead to changes in our emotions, which again change the way we act and the results we create. The truth is, you can’t always control the thoughts that bounce around in your mind. But you can indeed control what you focus on.

We don't need to be cheerful all the time.

Keep in mind that controlling our brain and creating a happier life is not about being cheerful all the time. It’s about giving less space to unwanted, unproductive thoughts and emotions, so we have more time and energy for our desired feelings and experiences. We all know that life is short and time is precious, but what’s even more valuable is our energy. And the truth is, negativity absorbs our mental and physical energy. When we’re constantly worried, afraid, and in fight-or-flight mode, we don’t have much time and energy left for positive experiences. Sometimes, negative thoughts are validated, and we experience them for a good reason.

The fact that our brain is more receptive to negativity doesn’t mean that we’re meant to live a negative life. We can choose our thoughts, which lead to changes in our emotions, which again change the way we act and the results we create. Yes, we create our own results.

The truth is, we can’t always control the thoughts that bounce around in our mind. But we can indeed control what we focus on.

Sh-t 🤬 happens to all of us.

We get rejected, experience unexpected losses, and come across small and big disasters from time to time. In those moments of desperation, it’s okay, and even helpful, to embrace the negative feelings we experience. There’s no point in sugarcoating the reality when life sucks. But the truth is that most of our days don’t suck. Most of the time life is okay, and your brain is still trying to keep you unhappy. It’s those days when you need to take responsibility and get in the driver's seat of your life.

Paying more attention to it might be a good idea. And if it’s not, you can replace it with other, more productive thoughts. And asking yourself if a thought is useful helps you get a neutral perspective on your emotions.

Focus on this goal:

According to author Bonnie Ware, one of the five biggest regrets people have on their deathbeds is: 

"I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me." Most of the time, we don’t even realize that our small daily thoughts, decisions, and actions ultimately shape who we are and the reality we experience. The easiest way to positively impact your thinking and life is to focus on:

Becoming your best self, and choosing joy. Know who we want to be and give our best to show up as that person–every single day.

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A letter from the General Manager

of Weight Watchers of Philadelphia

Dear WW Philadelphia Member,

We’re in that season. You know the one where everything changes, day-to-day and moment-to-moment. The beautiful summertime brings out a little spontaneity in all of us.

Add to that, the summer holiday, vacations, family, friends visiting from afar, and the laid-back feeling we get at the end of a warm day as a little thunderstorm is rolling in.

These times can make it hard to stick to a weight-loss plan, even one that fits into our busy lives as Weight Watchers does. I have had many personal experiences with quick out-of-town trips or visitors from out of town. I used to dread the situations but then I noticed my dreads never came to fruition. Despite indulging a little more, I find portion control to be easier while on vacation, probably because my own fridge isn’t in the next room.

I also get a lot more activity in when on vacation or having visitors in town.

Time and time again, the number on that scale has been a number I can really be happy about when faced with summer situations. Most of the time, down a little. Once in a while, up a tiny bit. Now I look forward to vacations away from it all, or with friends and family being around. I see it as a real opportunity where I practice eating and moving like someone who had never had an issue with extra poundage.

Here’s something I have shared with Members who have told me about their dread of an ‘eating’ holiday, like a cruise or vacation. – If we add up major holidays, two weeks of vacation, special anniversaries, our immediate family’s birthdays, and our own birthdays, we would probably come up with about 30 days. I don’t know about you, no judgment here, but I did not get 94 pounds overweight in 30 days. It was ALL the days in between.

Here's another trick to success when we need to just make it work, right now. – Change your settings in your app to maintenance. This will give you 6 more Points per day to use. Coming back to our workshops with a maintain instead of a 5 pounds gain is a huge WIN. Ask your workshop team if you need help with finding where to change this setting on the app.

Now it’s time for me to have a little iced tea or wine spritzer on the patio.

Do I hear thunder in the distance?

Have a great day, WW friend.

Fondest regards,

Deb Wright

General Manager

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*6 Months with Scale‡ Please note for the 6-Month Commitment plan: After your first six months at $49.95 monthly, your account will automatically renew at $54.95 monthly, until you cancel. While you may cancel your subscription at any time, cancellation will not go into effect until the end of your 6-month Commitment Plan. Thereafter, our standard cancellation policy applies.

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Start your well-being journey today! Visit ibx.com or download the IBX mobile app. Log on to reimbursemets.ibx.com/ibx and submit receipts and copies of your booklets.

The WW 4 Pillars of weight loss success

FoodMap out meals

You can simply follow the map you made for yourself.

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Starting small and building from there is key.

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SleepTurn down your bedroom temp

Small adjustments can help you be equipped for the day ahead.

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Get the grill fired up for these delicious

Points friendly meals!

Grilled Tuna with Olive Oil, Lime and Herb Butter

Grilled Romaine

with Caesar Dressing

Grilled Chicken with Strawberry Chili Salsa

Grilled Scallops

and Shrimp Skewers

Grilled Flank Steak

and Avocado Soft Tacos

Grilled Steak Topped with Arugula & Parmesan

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