Behavior precedes motivation and that is a fact! We oft times wait to do something until we feel “motivated.” Well, the truth is that we typically do not simply run across an abundance of motivation by waiting around. The key is by doing something small and building from there. Let’s look at weight management to understand this…
We live in a society that subscribes to the idea that dieting is the only way to be healthy. Actually, dieting is typically very unhealthy and 80% of dieters gain back the weight. If you are wanting to take back control of your weight and health the secret is to make it a LIFESTYLE. This is much more than simply restricting yourself from everything. Instead, I want us to think about embracing a way of being, doing, and thinking. Sounds overwhelming? Of course it does… so, let us start small. After all, a small behavior has to take place before you are truly motivated to make sustainable changes. Here are some key points to help:
- The beginning of a school year is a perfect time to decide on lifestyle changes. There is more calm structure at this time of year than at the beginning of a new year.
- Enlist others. Tell people who care about you that you are going to change. Set boundaries with them. If you don’t want them harping on you then tell them. If you want them to check in with you then tell them. Be specific with them.
- Eliminate contamination. Some people can bring you down when you are trying to make changes. If this is a family member, you cannot “get rid” of them so it might be a good idea to only let them know of the successes.
- Find internal reasons for change. Do not change just to get a smaller swimsuit or to make your wife happy. Those might help change but you will want the core reasons to be more internal (e.g. to feel more energy).
- Make small commitments. Do not overwhelm yourself with tons of small goals. Pick some things you want to improve and start with the easier ones to gain confidence before going bigger!