I agree with Brandis about the value of thinking about maintenance early on. When you start to think about maintenance, you realise that your diet should be about changing dietary habits to good ones that you can follow for the rest of your life.
We've got to learn to love and eat primarily basic healthy foods. If you can do that, healthy portion sizes tend to follow. I must admit that i do control my portion sizes but i also don't get up from the dinner table still hungry. That would be stupid.
I also eat whenever i get hungry. Because of that i try to eat enough at one meal to get me to the next one. And if i find it doesn't get me there i eat something, like a piece of fruit. Or even something more substantial if i judge it necessary. I found it trickier in the early stages of my diet than now - i am bordering on the top of my healthy weight range at the moment.
Allowing yourself to be hungry for any length of time will trigger a binge sooner or later. Saying that, its worthwhile learning to recognise if our appetite is from boredom rather than actual physiological hunger. When i get boredom hunger, i tend to try to change my activities.
I know now that i am never going to be able to relax around stuff like chocolate and cakes and ice-cream. And that gives me confidence and adds to my commitment.
if i was struggling to get started on a diet, i'd just eat healthy at maintenance or wait until the mood took me to make a firm effective decision to start.