How much money have you spent on diets and meal plans throughout your life?
How often have you been disappointed by the lack of results, especially long-term results?
Maybe more importantly, how much time and stress has dieting cost you?
The diet industry is a billion dollar industry for a reason. There are hundreds of thousands of products to buy, meal plans to try and coaches to hire. The problem with jumping on a meal plan or blindly hiring a coach is that we start trust them and what they tell us over trusting out own bodies.
The secret to lasting results with minimal effort? Learning your body, listening to your body, loving your body and respecting your body- all things that a meal plan or a diet pill can’t teach us. In fact, the diet industry teach us the exact opposite, and if you work with a coach who doesn’t take the time to get to know you and your body, that’s another recipe for disaster.
I get it though. You want to lose weight and it sounds so GOOD when a product comes out that promises to help you shed those unwanted pounds easily, or you find a coach who claims to have developed the perfect weight loss plan. They make it seem easy and we all want easy.
But let me tell you this:
Weight loss IS NOT EASY.
Weight loss take patience, time, trial and error and a whole lot of learning what your body likes, doesn’t like, what feels good for you, what doesn’t feel good for you AND you gotta get your mind right to enjoy and appreciate the process.
It’s a lot of work.
So what do you need to be successful?
First, an abundant, positive and gracious mindset.
Second, an eating style that works for YOU.
Third, an exercise regimen that works for YOU.
We’re going to tackle mindset here because it’s most important. Plus when you nail down the mindset stuff, you’ll actually find that the diet and exercise can just kind of fall into place.
Developing an Abundance Mindset
Dieting creates a scarcity mindset that has a tendency to damage both our bodies and our minds. Our food intake gets restricted, certain foods are a no-no, and sometimes entire food groups are eliminated. We’re taught to think that we have to settle for LESS instead of thinking we have more than we need which is actually the truth. This is where bingeing and “failing” on our plans comes into play. The diet isn’t maintainable, we get frustrated and so we eat all the things we “shouldn’t” as a way to rebel.
But what if there were no “shouldn’ts” and there weren’t any no-no foods?
In order to think in terms of abundance, we have to think of everything as abundant. We have to think that no food is off limits, we can have anything and everything we want and there’s more than enough food to go around.
It’s important to think about all we DO have instead of focusing on what we don’t have.
The power of positive self-talk
So many of us are still stuck in the old school mentality believing the harsher we are on ourselves, the better results we’ll see.
Negative self-talk involves harsh criticism and a zero tolerance policy for anything less than perfection. Positive self-talk, on the other hand, means approaching your setbacks and failures from a non-judgmental and less harsh perspective.
I’m sure at some point we’ve all stood in front of the mirror and had that internal convo that goes something like ‘Oh my god. I’m so fat. I shouldn’t have eaten those fries last night and I need to go to the gym. My arms are so big and my thighs are gross. I’m so lazy. Why do I even bother trying?”
I know I’ve had very similar convos with myself many times in the past.
Self-deprecation can certainly get our butts moving, but it won’t keep us going. It simply doesn’t serve as a strong motivator and here’s why: When we think so negatively about ourselves and our actions, we will eventually make decisions that will be consistent with those thoughts.
So instead of turning to negative self-talk, I suggest practicing some self-compassion. It can be tricky because old habits die hard and if you’ve spent the better part of your life beating yourself up for how you look or decisions you make, self-compassion can be a tough turnaround but it does work if you work it.
Here’s how it could shake out:
Make a less than ideal food choice? Tell yourself its ok and you’ll do better at your next meal or snack, then follow through come hell or high water. Prove to yourself that you have your back and that you actually can jump right back up.
Skip a workout? Promise yourself you’ll go tomorrow and follow through on that promise.
Realize you’re being super hard on yourself despite trying to be more self-compassionate? Don’t stress! Forgive yourself, then get back on the self-compassion game.
One of the fastest ways to create positivity is to use gratitude. Gratitude puts you in the power positon of choosing how you perceive what goes on around you and what happens to you.
On a weight loss journey it’s really easy to get frustrated and down if we have a setback or if we don’t see the results we want fast enough. If you find yourself in this spot (which we all do) find something in your immediate environment that you are grateful for. You can be grateful for literally anything. Lots of times I’m grateful for Turtle, my apartment that I love, my nephew, my man, my wine, my bed, the candles I burn every day that I love, my clients, my ability to exercise, etc…your possibilities are endless.
Overtime, when we can squeeze out just an ounce of positivity and gratitude out of a crappy situation, it makes all the difference in the world.
So how does an abundance mindset, positive self-talk and gratitude help with weight loss?
When we go into anything with a negative mindset we’re pretty much guaranteed to have a big struggle. If you’re unhappy with how your body looks and/or feels, guess what? You’re in total control of it! Not only do the majority of us have control over our physical appearance, but we’re ALL in COMPLETE CONTROL of how we think about ourselves.
“I have a ways to go” can turn into “I have a ways to go so I’ll get started now. I might as well start instead of just sitting here being unhappy with how I look and feel.”
“This is going to be too hard” can turn into “This is going to be hard and there will be days where I’ll struggle but I’ll never know what I can do if I don’t try.”
“I’m just going to fail so why even bother?” can turn into “I’ve failed so many times on diets. This time I’m going to do my research before just jumping into a diet. I’m going to find something that works for me.”
Change that negative inner dialogue to something more positive. Even on days where I feel bad about myself I’ve gotten really good (after a SHIT TON OF PRACTICE) at flipping it and focusing on my strengths. I might not feel great that day but I also make a point to get in a killer workout, eat something green or drink some water. Action always trumps inaction and positivity always trumps negativity.
I’ve developed a FREE 21-day guide to help you cultivate the mindset that will help you get the physique results you’re chasing and it all starts in your MIND. Click here to get on the list for my Imperfectly Perfect Body Love Project. It launches on Tuesday, February 14th and will be send directly to your inbox! Get more info here >> bit.ly/ImperfectlyPerfectBLP