The statistic for weight loss is depressingly small when it comes as a New Year’s resolution… 8% to be accurate, according to the University of Stanton ….
So how do we become that successful 8%
Well it IS definitely possible, it just requires a shift in mental attitude, and a little know how to make that shift…if you’ve read any of my blogs before, you’ll know I’m all about easy brain hacks (The #1 reason diets don’t work and how to hack your brain for success!) for clever, effortless weight loss…in order for it to be truly successful, of course….it HAS to last…there are 10 vital rules that will ensure you achieve your New Year New You Resolution and this time, make it STICK!
1. HAVE A PLAN…. Really! Don’t just put this to one side till the morning of January 1st…have a think about how you would like to do this. Write it out in a journal…you could also journal your progress. This will make your intentions real and actionable, and you will be far more likely to succeed if you treat your resolution as an INTENTION, rather than a WISH! If you’re just going to hope for the best on new year’s day or, heaven forbid, just do what you did last year in the hope it might work this time…you’re simply making a wish and you’ll be back to square one in no time.
2. JUST CONCENTRATE ON 1 SIMPLE AIM WITH YOUR WEIGHT LOSS….if you make it too complicated, (for instance, if you try and give yourself too many set goals for how much you want to weigh, and by when), then you will lose focus. Far better to have one clear, strong aim, such as…a dress size down by the spring, or getting into a particular style of dress by the summer…this will help your brain to know what to do to activate the goal setting part of your brain called the Reticular Activation System…yes there really IS such a part, and it helped you focus on bringing down your prey in cave-girl times! Now you can enlist it’s help if you give it some clear, simple goals.
3. TAKE SOME TIME TO THINK ABOUT WHAT DIDN’T WORK FOR YOU LAST TIME…. that’s not to say that you should be defeated by the negative thinking of past failures…FAR from it! But you do need to get clued up about yourself here. We are terrible for trying the same old thing over and over and hoping for the best….but if something didn’t work for you last time…just having the firm intention that it will is not nearly enough! I strongly recommend that you don’t beat yourself up with past failures here, because it’s not YOU that was the problem….it’s just that whatever you did wasn’t right for you…there are ways of losing weight that are comfortable and attainable, so if calorie restriction didn’t work for you last time…there’s a VERY good reason why it won’t this time. Try reading a blog I wrote on easy weight loss (‘Eat Like a Queen for the body of a Goddess’).
4.TAKE IT ONE STEP AT A TIME!… Break it down into easy bite sized chunks, (!) and you are 10 TIMES more likely to succeed! If you only see the big goal ahead of you, you’ll feel daunted at the first post. You could try giving yourself a little target every month…try not to do weekly, as we fluctuate far too much in the space of one week…if you take a larger chunk of time such as a month, you again give yourself space and time for an easy ‘win’. Small goals are easier for our brain to understand, and easier for us to visualise successfully too. Little steps eventually lead to the whole journey, and sometimes it might not feel like much is happening, so small steps allow us to see little ‘wins’
5. ENJOY THE RIDE!…. If you go into your brand new lovely resolution, and see it as a chore, or even worse, tortuous!… (I know…I’ve certainly been there too!). You will NOT succeed! I can almost completely guarantee that you will be in the 92% who will fail yet again at their weight loss resolution. Let’s put it this way…have you ever noticed how much easier something is when you enjoy it? It just happens so much more naturally doesn’t it? You get in the flow, and before you know it, you’ve achieved much more than you thought you would! And on the opposite side of things….how hard does something become when you don’t enjoy it? It’s like walking through mud, you’re resistant and you will do anything to get yourself out of it! How do you enjoy the weight loss journey? Do it differently this time! Simple as that! See your food as the simple pleasure it is, and diet CLEVER this time…seek out a way to make it so and you’ll succeed without really even trying that way. That’s a promise!
6. GET HELP…. That is…look at who are the experts out there and enlist their help, there are quite a few really good courses and programmes out there…we know so much more about weight loss now, and we KNOW that it’s not about calorie controlled diets any more…that is sooo last year! So do your research and gain an understanding of what the new science is telling us about weight loss…you don’t have to become a boffin, but learn from those who know just how your body loses weight easily.
7. GIVE YOURSELF LOTS OF LITTLE WINS…. If you break your weight loss goals down into manageable steps, then you can start to see all the little WINS on the way…these little gains are vital for helping to keep your motivation…small, exciting signs that you body is changing shape, or your energy levels beginning to raise. Or maybe you’re starting to feel lighter and your skin is improving. Really NOTICE these little signs, and don’t always concentrate on how far you have to go yet…take a look back and see how far you’ve come from time to time. Journaling will really help with this too, as you can read back on your previous entries from early on.
8. FOLLOW THE 80/20 RULE….It’s built into the success of every business….20% wastage. That is….no business expects to be 100% efficient 100% of the time, so a business will build in room for error and mistakes to be learned from…this the perfect blueprint for success when it comes to weight loss too. ESPECIALLY when it comes to weight loss! Because if you try to be so-called ‘good’ 100% of the time, there WILL be a day when you eat something you’ve told yourself you won’t and it will be too easy to see this as a failure…all or nothing thinking will creep in then…we’ve all had that thought “Well, I’ve eaten rubbish now, so I may as well carry on” Right? If you simply let yourself off the hook, and use the chance as an opportunity to learn what your triggers might have been that day (tired, hungry, stressed, just because!)..then you’ll turn it into a positive for yourself!
9. GIVE YOURSELF A LONG TERM GOAL… Of at least a couple of seasons ahead…this will give you the precious gift of time, and automatically lift the pressure of yourself…you’re far more likely to enjoy the journey, and learn more about yourself and what your true triggers might be, if you’ve not given yourself a tight deadline that simply won’t fit for you.
10. BE NICE!…. To yourself, that is! We are constantly told that if we’re not successful at weight loss, then it’s because of some failing in us…which is obviously and blatantly NOT TRUE. How many times have you set yourself an achievable goal at work, or in your leisure time and achieved it? I need to say right now, and very clearly….you are NOT greedy, or weak-willed, or de-motivated, or different from anyone else. You are NOT missing some strong gene that everyone else has and you don’t…It’s just weight loss….find out how to take charge of the impulsive urges that you are at the mercy of in your nervous system…really enjoy your food, and the rest will fall into place…..you are a super hero already, whatever the scales may say!