Making changes to our lives can be challenging. 95% of our brain's function is subconscious. Our brains like to be efficient and do the same thing over and over again. This is great when it comes to brushing our teeth, but not so great if that habit is "eat cake when I'm stressed."
The good news is that we can re-write our habits so that they serve us!
"It’s not so much the weight as the feeling fabulous - or not.
I am going on holiday in 12 weeks. I am fat and I certainly don’t feel fabulous! I’m not obese but my belly is a lot more round than I like.
It’s momentum really. I am pretty sure I’ll lose a decent amount of weight before our holiday but getting started is hard and so is keeping going - especially once the big event is over. There’s a good chance I’ll be chubby again next spring lol"
This is such a great question and brings up lots of points to chat about.
Our brains have evolved to avoid danger. Stakes were high for our ancestors. Getting killed was a serious thread.
Our brains are also wired to seek pleasure, such as finding food.
We automatically see danger and "negativity" everywhere.
Notice how the question is "why should I bother?" as opposed to "why shouldn't I try?"
The good news is that we can rewire our brains to support our goals. We start by noticing the positive things.
Setting goals is a great way to motivate you to do something. The reality is that we don't have any control over the goal. Whether it's to lose weight, win a football tournament or a financial goal.
We can only control our outcome by focusing on the way to get there.
When applied to healthy eating or weight loss, that means we can control what we eat and what we do every day.
Instead of focusing on the "not great bits" of your body, think about all the amazing things your body can do!
I have spots on my face, but chose to think about how my body can walk and swim. How I can see and use my fingers.
Our bodies are amazing. So often we don't appreciate what we can do.
Before you go to bed each night, think of 3 amazing things your body can do.
It's really easy to focus on all those things that you didn't do well. But what DID you do well?
This is our "negative bias" at work again.
We're so quick to do something well and move onto the next. We never take time to appreciate that we did something well.
I see this a lot with my weight loss clients. On the second session, they often tell me that they ate a piece of pizza that they didn't plan to.
It's only when I question them further that they "admit" all the great things they've done that week. Eaten more vegetables, healthy snacks, less cake.
The truth is that they've made 10 amazing changes but they just focus on the one thing that didn't go well.
Celebrate all the wins. However small!
When we set a goal, we think that the route will be a straight line. Each week we'll lose a bit of weight until we reach our desired goal.
Each bit of weight loss will motivate us to keep going.
But that's not true!
Experiencing failure is part of the journey! There will be times when you don't lose weight. Or even gain it.
If we know that there will be failures, it's easier to accept them.
There will be times when we don't feel motivated. When we come back from holiday and can't see the point of healthy eating.
We have to keep going even though we don't feel motivated.
When we have a "failure" we just have to keep going until we reach our goal of "success".
The 4 main areas to nurture and care for your body are:
Tomorrow we'll be looking at cravings, desire and urges. Come and join me to understand how to manage when the donuts cry "eat me!"
Dr Orlena is a health coach. She helps busy mums go from "I can't lose weight" to feeling fit and fabulous. Find out more about her here.