What’s the best way to stay motivated to lose weight and stick to a diet? It’s a great question and one that is asked every day by people hoping to finally find a way to do it. But this is not a one-answer-fits-all kind of question because we each have different influences and obstacles to work around.
I actually think there’s still another question hiding beneath the first one. That is…how do I remove the resistance I feel toward losing weight and exercising? This, I believe, is the ultimate question and it applies to all motivation. If we’re not motivated to do something that we say we want to do, there must be some resistance preventing us from taking action, otherwise, we would do it without hesitation. Remove the resistance and you unblock your motivation. Makes sense, right?
Things that Cause us to Resist Dieting and Exercising
- Fear of giving up the foods we love
- Fear of pain from exercising
- Frustration due to past failed attempts
- Confusion about why nothing ever seems to work
- Confusion about what to change or do differently so that we can succeed
- Mixed messages from all media sources about what foods are healthy and which to avoid
- Confusion about how to exercise properly and what types of exercise are the best for us
- Feeling sad, depressed, ambivalent, or uninspired
- Being disorganized or distracted by other things going on in our lives
Do I really have to stop eating cheeseburgers and fries?
When people talk about losing weight or starting a new exercise routine, they often do so with a mix of fear, frustration, and desire. The fear is from the feeling that it may hurt or take a lot of effort. This resistance is natural because our instinct is to avoid painful or unpleasant experiences. But the fact is, many people associate exercise with pain.
Not only do we fear the pain that comes with exercise, we also fear having to give up our favorite foods, though this is more emotional or psychological pain because we feel as though we’re being deprived of some of life’s greatest pleasures. I’ve felt that pain, too, and it’s not very motivating. Like most people, I enjoy certain foods and when I think about never eating them again, I get a little depressed… which is why I’ll never give them up, completely.
Stop the roller-coaster…I want to get off!
The average person has likely tried adopting some kind of exercise regimen or diet to lose weight and get into better physical shape. However, most people wind up on the roller-coaster diet; their weight goes up and down and up and down… This is really frustrating so it’s no surprise if you’re feeling a little anxiety from the last diet you tried. I can hear you thinking, “why even bother if I’m only going to end up gaining all my weight back?”
The good news is, there are ways to improve your odds of losing weight and keeping it off. And you have two really important things going for you:
- You have a real and honest desire to succeed
- You haven’t given up yet
Mistakes DO NOT equal failure, they equal FEEDBACK. Having this kind of attitude lessens the mistakes and improves your next try. For this series, I’m going to help you remove your resistance so that you can finally create a plan that works and that doesn’t overwhelm you. Here’s some of what I plan to cover in this series:
- A radical way of approaching diet and exercise
- The easiest way (ever!) to start a diet…and stay on it
- A No-Fail plan for starting an exercise routine that you will easily keep
- The best way to deal with weakness when it strikes
- How to start eating healthy by NOT eating healthy (What??)
- How to play with your food
Have I whet your appetite for more? Good. Before we dig in, it’s important to realize that this is a comprehensive plan, not just a lose-weight-quick trick. I know it goes without saying, but, if you’re going to start a new diet or exercise program, you should consult your doctor first. There are several key parts to making a comprehensive plan and they all work together like puzzle pieces that make up the big picture, and that is a picture of a healthier you.
If you let me know where you struggle the most in dieting or exercise, I’ll try to cover it in this series.
Just post a comment, send an email, or connect on Facebook.