I spent years thinking about maybe sorta trying to lose weight. I’d start to feel pumped about the idea of being in a healthier place and maybe dropping 20 pounds so I’d spend a couple weeks getting up in the morning, going running, feeling some amazing endorphins but then…
I wasn’t seeing results.
I think sometimes we try to convince ourselves that results don’t matter so we move ahead with this loose plan to “be healthier”. I didn’t mind exercise, being active, and attempting to be more “careful” with what I ate, but the reality was I didn’t have a clear definition of what I was moving toward so I was lacking a big vision for the outcome that I ultimately wanted. We’ve all heard it before, a group of people starts talking about collective ideas of eating better and incorporating some healthier behaviors into their routines, but since we’re scared of the word “diet”, it’s easy to simply say, I’m “being healthier”. The lack of definition in this vision lends itself to being next to impossible to measure which makes it hard to manage and what is measured is managed.
So, then what happens when the loose plan isn’t cutting it? Maybe you’ve got a major event coming up and you’re not feeling so great about yourself? Or you’ve finally just realized it’s time to make permanent change. You start to panic because that’s what people without a plan do. Decisions that have your best, long-term interest in mind usually aren’t born out of panic mode.
Quit Freaking out!
Instead of waging war against the words diet and exercise, adjust your thinking. If my approach, my decisions, choices, habits and routines up to this point have put me in a place I do NOT want to be, then I have to find the resolve to say that something needs to change significantly. Not kinda sorta with a loose plan but firmly and significantly.
Something that was enormously helpful to me was that even in my “before” picture, I wasn’t disappointed in myself. I was never coming from a place of urgency or self-loathing. Being real…I went and got my mom jeans from Old Navy and I rocked that butt and gut. I wasn’t feeling dumpy, frumpy or down on myself. I realize now how starting from that place of positivity while looking forward to exciting change, was a wonderful recipe for success! It turns out that this somewhat “chill” part of my hardwired personality, set me up for success once I was ready to tap into the proper motivation and the right program.
So, what if your tendency is to lean toward the urgent, the negative, the panic? The first step is to recognize that you’re defaulting to that type of motivation. Secondly, be hyper vigilant about finding a new motivator, something that’s not event driven, a vision of what you’re moving toward. Third, having a firm plan and a rock solid support system. An inarticulated vision will almost certainly leave you floundering along the way and confused. As a result you’ll likely end up back where you started.
Being vague about how and why you’re making change, creates more confusion than clarity. Once confusion enters into your process it’ll stop you dead in your tracks. Do not panic. Make a plan. You’re going to need it since change comes from doing things completely differently than the way you’ve done them before.