The tag line on my promotional postcards reads 'make this the last diet you ever have to do'. Nourishing your body with the right foods is the physiological part of the plan - but what about the psychological part, the voice inside your head that makes you reach for the biscuits and cakes when you might not even like them, makes you sabotage your efforts when you have been doing so well? Here are some strategies to use to help you overcome this inner sabotage.
1. Successful weight loss and good health are made up of small steps and decisions you take each day. Every time you make a good decision that will support your health and weight loss goals use your inner voice to praise yourself. Tell yourself how that decision was the first of many that will help you to reach your goals.Really give yourself a very strong pat on the back, most of us are very bad at being nice to ourselves.
2. Find a goal that is about weight loss and good health as a means to an end rather than the end itself. Although a large majority of people say they would love to lose some weight the fact that most don't do it or that they do and put it back on again points to the fact that the goal is not compelling and important enough in itself. Three very good motivators for me personally are remaining in good health into old age, being able to fit into my clothes comfortably and, probably the most compelling one, keeping my IBS at bay. Find your motivators yourself, or work with a friend or a coach to find them. These will keep you on track much more than just 'I want to lose half a stone'.
3. Ditch the guilt when you do eat something that is not on plan. Make a conscious decision to eat it and then savour every mouthful. See this as a choice not a mindless action. One meal or one day off the plan won't sabotage your goals too much but one week or one month sure will. Remember - progress not perfection!
4. There is evidence to suggest that good healthy habits need to be formed over a period of time. In the same way that you may be in the habit of having a biscuit every time you have a cup of tea or a glass of wine (or two) every night at dinner you can make new more supportive habits. Replace the biscuit with a small portion of nuts. Replace the wine with a glass of cold sparkling water with fresh lime. Do these things every day for a couple of weeks and they will become new habits.
5.You may having limiting beliefs at the core or your identity about your ability to be slimmer and more healthy. For example you may just know 'I'm not someone who exercises' or 'I'm not meant to be slim' or 'I don't deserve to be slim'. Replace this with some positive self talk such as 'I am someone who consistently chooses healthy foods to support my health and weight', I am someone who exercises every day to support my health and weight' and choose actions that match. For me personally when I see bread or pasta now I just know that 'I am someone who doesn't eat grains'. After a year this is a core belief.
6 DO NOT put your life on hold until you lose weight!!! This is so important. Yes losing weight may make you feel better about yourself and hopefully you may feel many other benefits to your health that will improve your quality of life. However life is going on around you NOW and your future is made up of what is happening in the NOW. Try and be in the present as much as you can, make consistently healthy choices NOW and you will reach your goals.