Want To Lose Weight? Start With Your Mind, In 3 Simple Steps
Last week, as I was happily hanging out with my honey on the beach, it occurred to me that there are two types of people on a beach: those who are proud of their bodies, and those who aren't. It is easy to tell who is who. The proud ones walk confidently around in their bikinis or trunks, almost daring you to look at them, enjoying the fruits of taking great care of their bodies.
The ones who are not proud are a different story. They cover up whenever possible, quickly dart into the ocean before too many people can see them, and like to surround themselves with friends who look just like them.
Which one are you right now?
This summer, I want YOU to be in that first category. I want you to wear your body with pride at the pool, beach, or board walk. I want you to feel hot, vibrant, sexy, and alive.
To do this, we need to take down the biggest culprit behind why you don't have that body right now: the justifications you make to yourself about why you can skip your workout or ditch your eating plan.
You know what I'm talking about. That voice in your head that rationalizes:
I shouldn’t go the gym because I am too tired. I can order pizza tonight because I worked hard today and deserve it.
In the moment, these justifications may seem reasonable, almost like words from an inner guru ... but a few hours later, as you're feeling eater's remorse, you realize that they were bogus.
I'd bet that that justifying voice is the #1 reason that you're at your current weight. So today, let’s learn how to thwart these justifications in three easy steps!
Step 1: Identify your personal brand of justification.
Which ones do you keep coming back to, like a broken record? Here are a few common ones:
- I ate well today, so I can splurge a little.
- I need a pick-me-up.
- I can’t have a good time with my friends if I don’t drink with them.
- I am bored.
- A snack would liven things up.
- I don’t want to waste the food.
- I’ve had a hard day and need to be nice to myself.
- I will do better tomorrow!
- This one bite won’t make any difference.
- Everyone else is eating it.
- No one will ever know.
- It’s a special occasion!
- I don’t want to offend her by not eating it.
- This food isn’t THAT unhealthy!
What are your favorites? For me, I used to love numbers 1, 6, and 10 above. Knowing your brand is the first step in changing it!
Step 2: Notice when your justifications come up.
Ever notice how, once you decide you dislike a certain song, you start to notice it all around you? Being broadcast at the mall, on the radio, or hummed by your coworker? Well, your goal should be to have the same relationship with your justifications. For example, if you walk by your neighborhood bakery, and start figuring out how to make it OK to eat a chocolate croissant, it's great for you to realize “Oh, there’s justification #2 again. Dang it.”
Step 3: Have a go-to replacement action.
If your child is having a tantrum, what's the first thing you try? You distract them with something. ("Look at Elmo!") The same trick works with you. Have a replacement action that you perform whenever your justifications appear. Call a friend. Read a few pages of your current book. Go for a run. You'll find that, after this action, your justifications will “lose their hold” and seem less appealing. My replacement action is reading a book.
That’s it. As simple as identify, notice, replace. If you practice this, you'll get good at turning away your justifications before they can do any real damage. This is a crucial skill, not just for your weight, but for accomplishing ANY dream in your life. So get cracking!
What is your brand of justification? What will you commit to do to lessen its hold on you, and your body?