It's all in your head...really!
Success or failure in weight loss is 80% mindset and only 20% lifestyle.
In Part One, we smashed the myth that fat loss failure is due to laziness or lack of willpower. Instead, the most important ingredient to winning at weight loss is actually your mindset:
1. Have the courage to admit, "I don't know"... the flexibility to examine your hidden baggage around your weight and kick it to the curb with the garbage. If you're not where you want to be with your weight, you definitely have baggage weighing you down... just saying.
2. It's not good enough to HOPE you can lose weight. You must BELIEVE you can.
3. Visualize your outcome vividly and how it feels to have the energy and appearance you want... as if you already have attained it. This is crucial in getting your unconscious mind onside because your unconscious mind can't tell the difference between your vivid imagination, reality, and a memory. It literally tricks your mind into believing this is already your identity so it quits fighting you.
4. Get intimate with your WHY.
Know what you have to lose and gain... pun intended. The stronger your WHY, the more motivated you will be to keep pushing through when the going gets tough.
These first four steps set you up for success before you even start your lifestyle changes.
The next step is a baby step.
I know you're itching to dive in headfirst just like all those other times you've tried. And if you do, you're falling into the next major trap.
5. Inch by Inch, Everything's a Cinch
What's more important, your long-term success or making your ego feel good?
In his highly acclaimed book, "Are You Up for the Challenge?", Rod Hairston tells of setting a goal of reaching 100 push-ups. Most people start with the max they can do on the very first day because their ego demands it. Then they are stiff and sore as Self-deception sets in and derails them.
It is far more effective to take small actions to build the habit, and let the habit get the results.
Take the goal of doing 100 push-ups. It is far better to start even smaller than the number you can currently do. For example, start with one push-up the first day and slowly increase by one daily. This allows you to fly under the security radar of your unconscious mind.
By the time you're up to a substantial number, doing push-ups is becoming a habit and part of your identity. Your unconscious mind now accepts it as a done deal. Health and weight loss do NOT have to be hard. Just do a bit every day that is enjoyable and consistent.
The same holds true for your eating habits. Make small incremental changes rather than attempting to cleanse for three days straight or avoid alcohol for a month.
You are conditioning your mind as well as your body. And your new habit becomes part of your lifestyle rather than just a temporary weight loss program.
6. Create a Lifestyle Rather Than a Diet
Do you need to cheat while you're achieving your health and weight loss goals?
If the answer is yes, you are setting yourself up for failure.
Instead, build a healthy lifestyle that fits with your new healthy identity. Incorporate enjoyable rituals like candlelit dinners and using your "special occasion" plates to spice up your healthy meals.
Create healthy routines in all areas of your health, like taking a walk after dinner with your partner. Give yourself healthy rewards like flowers as you reach each milestone to celebrate. These rituals, routines, and rewards will set you up for success and ensure that you never feel the need to cheat.
Eventually, you will wonder how you ever enjoyed your previous lifestyle.
7. Take the Dare
There's nothing like a dare to make you follow through.
The trick is to create the dare for yourself.
Tell others your goals. Better yet, corral a buddy into joining the program with you so that you can hold each other accountable. Don't have anyone nearby to support you? Join Growth-U's free 365 Daily Growth program and discover thousands of like-minded people who are interested in learning, growing and changing. For intensive accountability around your specific goals, register for Growth-U's Transform U: 45 Days to Successful Habits.
Hop Back on Track if You Fall Off
If your devious unconscious mind is successful in derailing you, forgive yourself --and your unconscious mind--and hop back on the path.
Kick your inner critic to the curb and replace it with positive affirmations and self-encouragement. Treat yourself like you would your daughter and only say the loving encouraging phrases you would say to her.
All too often, we are our own worst critics. This just plays right into your unconscious mind's sabotage. If you slip up (we all do), and you fall off the wagon, forgive yourself immediately.
Otherwise, your unconscious mind will just clobber you with it as effectively as a one-two punch.
Make Friends with Your Sabotage Patterns
The lengths and ways your unconscious mind will go to deceive you are unlimited. However, we typically have our go-to hot buttons the unconscious mind likes to push.
Perhaps you feel too stressed and overworked, or you experience pain with exercising. Maybe you get to the end of the day and exercising has "slipped" your mind. Suddenly that creamy donut smells irresistible and the little voice tells you that you deserve a treat. You sleep in rather than getting up to exercise. You're too exhausted to cook a healthy meal and you reach for your old comfort food.
If in doubt, assume your unconscious mind is attempting to deceive you. Have fun with it, searching for deception patterns like you would challenges in a video game.
8. Help Others Attain your Goal
Yes, your eyes are working just fine.
This is the most important step of all, and truly the secret ingredient that no one talks about. Helping others attain the weight loss YOU want creates the highest level of belief that it can be done, so you will ultimately achieve it too. It makes you feel valued and loved. It takes you out of a feeling of envy of others' bodies, and gives you a feeling of abundance (yes, in your health). Truly, what you put out you receive back.
How does that look?
- GIVE others the support and encouragement you need.
- Hold them lovingly accountable to being their best so that you must, in turn, be your best.
- BE the role model of health and wellness for those around you... your son, daughter, sister, mother, family, friends, and community. Show them how it looks and feels so that they too can believe they can do it too. Someday, you could even be the subject of articles so that people you've never heard of will want to be like you.
Conclusion: There is No ThereIt's time to take back control of your life, your lifestyle, and health.
If your goal is weight loss, employ the 80/20 Rule. Eighty percent of your result comes from changing your mindset, and only 20% comes from your nutrition and exercise regime.
It's time to choose the positive mindset, beliefs, and habits required to give you your desired results. Even more importantly, recognize that your unconscious mind has and will continue to do its best to derail you in its well-intentioned attempts to keep you safe (the same). Set yourself up for success by anticipating the sabotage, treating it like a game.
Fun gets more done.
If you fall off track, forgive yourself, give yourself loving positive encouragement, and hop back into the game.
Ultimately, life is about happily achieving rather than achieving to be happy. Interestingly, when you change your mindset, you will enjoy yourself more and lose more weight... permanently.