The promise of quick weight loss can be so seductive….It can fill you with excitement and hope and have you thinking, “This is the one that’s going to change my life!”.
Let’s face it; we have all fallen for a quick fix diet at some stage in our lives. Some of us maybe more than others….
Many smart women are locked into an unwinnable weight game, and feel stuck in the addictive cycle as their self-worth is shredded with every diet failure as sooner, or later, they always return to their old habits.
So before you hop on to the latest fad diet, I encourage you to slow down, think carefully and read this post.
Here is what I’ve learned from my own experience and working with my clients on their struggle with weight loss.
Sustainable weight loss comes down to understanding how your mind and your emotions work.
And, if you’re anything like my clients, then what you really want is more energy, better sleep and to eat in a way that feels good and gives you laser focus.
In order to achieve this, you need to know the 5 essential truths of weight loss, and exactly HOW you can apply to end your struggles with weight loss for GOOD!
#1 Make it a lifetime commitment
“It’s not a short term diet. Its a long term lifestyle change”
Eating healthfully and eating to lose weight is not the same thing. There is a different mindset and motivation behind each.
People fail at diets and permanent weight loss primarily because their goal is skewed—losing weight versus being healthy.
“Eating healthy tends to naturally lead to weight loss”
I have learned, from my experience and that with my clients, to look at weight loss with a different focus:
A more realistic and sustainable goal is a focus on long term results of feeling healthy, energetic and calm not the latest fad diet that promises losing 10kg in the next 21 days.
Its about being more consistent then you were yesterday
Building healthy habits you can maintain in the long term
Its about balance and sustainability with out deprivation, not to sacrifice everything to get the fastest weight loss
What you can do:
Focus on accepting that a healthy weight that comes naturally will take longer to achieve but is also easier to maintain
Start slowly and try to avoid setting crazy restrictive plans or making too many food rules for your-self.
Focus on building momentum for healthy living.
#2 Create Your Action Plan
“A goal is just a goal with out a plan”
Why have an action plan?
The whole purpose of an action plan is to clarify what resources you will require to reach your goal; and create a timeline for when you will need to complete specific tasks.
How to create an action plan
1.Identify focus area for change
2.List everything you need to do to achieve your goal
What will you need to do daily/weekly
How much are you I going to do and how often will you do it?
When are you going to do it?
3.Plan your week ahead
Schedule enough time for the week for all areas of your life – work, family, AND yourself
Schedule in time in your daily planner to action your goal
Schedule your best day and time for planning
Create a daily plan from your weekly plan
Identify things and situations that trip you up- what might get in your way?
5.Assesss your progress on a regular basis and by asking the following:
What has been working well?
What hasn’t gone so well?
How can you do things differently?
Recognise your progress and celebrate small wins
#3 Disarm your inner critic
We all have that little voice that usually shows up when we attempt something new or different.
Your inner critic can show up in different ways and can reappear with a different focus each time.
It shows up as a negative internal narration on who you are and how you behave
Some examples can include:
"You will never get this right, look at your failed attempts."
"There is definitely something wrong with you."
Self-criticism sabotages weight loss attempts
The cause of the inner critic is often rooted deeper and independent of a your body size or eating habits.
I can tell you from my experience, that losing weight will not cure your self-criticism (your inner critic) and you can’t criticize yourself into losing weight.
Dieting because you don’t like your self will feel like punishment and deprivation and make you want to eat more.
Have you ever noticed that as soon as you decide to go on a diet, all you want to do is eat chocolate?
What you can do:
How to disarm your inner critic..
You can disarm your inner critic by following: The 3 C’s Model–Catch It, Check it, Change it
1. CATCH IT
Catch the inner critical voice.
Learn to be aware of what you are thinking and when you have a negative thought.
Remember that this is not a reflection of your reality but just a thought you are presently having
2. CHECK IT
Be rational. Is it real?
3. CHANGE IT
Substitute the negative thought with something else that is positive.
Write down a more realistic evaluation of your self as “I” statements
So in response to a thought like, "You are so stupid," you could write, "I may struggle at times, but I am smart and competent in many other ways."
#4 Start with the focus on consistency before outcome
It's easy to spend all of your time focused on the outcome and rapid changes, and forget that it's the daily habits & routines you do consistently that lead to long–term success.
“Consistency is the most valuable skill you can learn “
The fact is that the most accomplished people are simply more consistent than everyone else. Yes, it’s that simple!
Doing things consistently leads to habit formation and becomes second nature after a while.
“Consistency has nothing to do with willpower or motivation”
I am a big believer in daily rituals, they are the backbone and I live my life by following these rituals.
They also make it a no-brainer and I don’t need to rely on willpower and motivation
Here are a few of my daily rituals:
Wake up between 5-6am during the week
Do cardio for 30-40 mins
Look at my daily plan every morning for 10 mins
Do resistance training for 30 minutes at lunchtime or arvo.
Eat three meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner with no snacks in between
Write for 15 mins every night in my Reflection & Gratitude diary
So how do you stick to your daily habits with consistency?
It’s all about scheduling in activities that are important to you and the daily order of things in your life.
“If something is important to you, schedule it in”
I know what activities are important to me and I schedule them in a particular order that works for me.
Every day is:
The same order
And every time
What you can do:
Instead of focusing on weight loss as an outcome, create a plan identifying when and where these things are actually going to happen.
Create some time
Plan what activities are important to you
Schedule them in at a time that works for you
Start and follow your daily schedule
Master your daily routine
#5 Focus on Progress not Perfection
This all about adopting a different mindset and being ok with things taking a little longer. Perfectionism takes you down the negative lane and can keep you trapped there unless you adopt a different attitude.
Perfection gets in the way of your progress in the following ways:
It slows you down, trying to be perfect is an energy drainer
Leads to self criticism and your inner voice pops up telling you can’t do it
It hinders your motivation and you start to think in an all or nothing way.
“Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind”
Focusing on Progress is the key to long-term success because:
First and most of all its sustainable
It’s creates a positive “I can do” mindset
It keeps your mind open to learning and seeing opportunities
It is so much more doable
What you can do:
Start by taking one step and be ok with that
Make slow progress each week
Keep a journal of your progress
“Change does not take time-it takes commitment” Thomas Crum
Emotional Eating Coach
BSc (Biomed), Cert IV (PT), Wellness Coach (Level 3))
I coach 35+ women to put down their fork and pick up their life. If you want to end your struggles with excess weight, stress and self-belief, using your strengths and capabilities, book a free 15-minute mini-coaching sesssion with me and I’ll show you how to transform your life.
The End of Overeating-David Kessler
The Craving Mind: Judson Brewer