When new clients join my telephone weight-loss classes, we often discuss the most common anxieties about dieting.

Many people worry about feeling weak, others fear deprivation and some are unhappy about the loss of comfort food.

Yet there is one fear that has more power to wreck weight loss than any other - the fear of failure.

It is hardly surprising.

Many of you have been on countless diets yet are still overweight and back again for another go.

You're used to telling your friends and family you're starting a new programme and then, a week later, there you are tucking into so-called forbidden food.

None of us likes feeling humiliated so it is reasonable that, as we start yet another programme, one of our greatest fears is failure.

I'd like to show you how to turn around that fear, how to make youself feel full of potential.

The ideas I'll talk about remind me of the proverbial glass of water. The optimist will see half a glass of water (or wine) and say it's half full, whereas the pessimist with say it's half empty.

They're talking about the same glass of water. Now, take a piece of paper.

On it draw a downward spiral. Imagine your thoughts about weight loss as you draw the spiral down the page.

You'll be thinking: "Here we go again" or "How miserable" or "I've never succeeded before so why will I now?".

As you draw and muse, you'll feel your energy sapping away. You'll want to crawl under the duvet just thinking about it.

Now take another piece of paper. Ideally, take a yellow crayon. Draw a great big sun with light radiating out from it. In the middle, write down "radiating possibilities".

Once again, imagine your thoughts about weight loss when you look at the sun.

They're likely to be "I can do it if I change my approach" or "I can achieve lots of things when I'm determined" or "I'm a different person to the one I was yesterday" or "I'm in charge".

See the difference in your mood when you draw those two different pictures.

Promise yourself to focus on the possibilities of the future.

Think of great people in the past who have achieved greatness in spite of the discouragement around them. The four-minute mile was considered physically impossible until Roger Bannister did it.

Human flight was once thought to be impossible and now we almost take airplane flight for granted.

Forget the statistics, hang your sunny picture where you can see it and, to quote Nike: "Just do it."

You can get support from Dr Judy Citron and her team of DietCoaches by joining her telephone weight-loss classes, right from your own home. "You lose weight and you're not on a diet. It's amazing."

Phone free for more information on 0800 074 0260 or visit the web site at www.thedietcoach.com