Day 68, 69 & 70 of 100 Days of Weight Loss
Friday, January 02, 2009
Day 68 with 32 days to go
I had a "pause"
As you work on changing your dieting vocabulary, here's another way to eliminate saying, "I blew it." If you slip up and eat something that's not on your plan, skip beating yourself up with harsh, punishing words. Instead, label the incident as a PAUSE in your diet. This kind, nonjudgmental word doesn't make any references to your personality or your ability to accomplish a goal. It allows you to take a break in your efforts, then rest and regroup.
Having a pause
On a hike up the mountain, you stop to sit down on a rock, take a sip of water and rest. You wouldn't berate yourself for doing that, or punish yourself by saying "I blew the hike, now I have to go back 100 yards and walk that part over again." Noooo way, you just rest, sip your water, and continue on your journey. That was a PAUSE.
Erase the board
If you slip up on your program, just say "I had a brief pause, but now I'm back on track." You don't have to say another word. That takes care of it. No dwelling on it, move on and move forward.
Okay let's say you gorged yourself on 10 cookies instead of 2 that you planned to eat. Picture in your mind, a bit white erasable board and mentally write on it, "I ate 10 cookies."
OK you ate 10 cookies, you acknowledged it. Now mentally erase it off the board. Get on with your life.
...Next time you're tempted to say "I blew it", stop yourself immediately, instead label your slipup as a pause.
...Decide how you will bounce back from an eating pause. Write down a short plan that includes what you'll say to yourself as well as what you'll do next.
...Whenever you slip up, instead of dwelling on it, practice the skill of "erasing the board". Think about how you can learn from a pause rather than finding ways to punish yourself.
Day 69 with 31 days to go
No Cheating Allowed
"I cheated big time on my diet today." (sounds a lot like Weight Watchers to me). Does that phrase sound familiar? You've heard variations of that line. The word "CHEAT" makes it sound like you believe the diet is in charge. You label yourself in a way that gives away your power. If you're strong, you wouldn't cheat on your program.
No More Cheating
Truth is -- YOU CAN'T CHEAT WITH FOOD! It's impossible. The word "Cheat" refers to something illegal or immoral and food is neither of those. You don't have some kind of moral or character defect just because you ate a friggin cookie.
Stop using that word completely. Instead, use the words CHOOSE OR CHOICE to describe your behavior.
You make dozens of choices in life every day. How you eat is just one of them. You choose things such as what time to get up, whether to go to work, how to talk to the people around you, what to wear...etc. You might not like all your options but the choices you make determine the outcomes of your day.
As far as eating, every morsel that goes into your mouth is put there by choice. Sometimes you make healthy choices, sometimes lousy ones. In time all these choices affect your outcomes especially when it comes to whether or not you lose weight.
Making Health Choices
Instead of saying you cheated on your diet, admit to yourself that every time you reach for food, you're making choices. IF you eat a cookie that wasn't on your plan, say "I CHOSE to EAT A COOKIE today." Maybe you wish you hadn't done that but either way you made a choice about eating it.
Don't try to excuse your behavior by blaming lack of willpower or discipline. You are in charge of your own choices. Take responsibility for the decisions you make around food. When you talk about your actions, describe them in ways that maintain your personal power.
... talk to someone about your diet plan, use the word CHOICE several times to describe your actions. Notice how that feels.
...In your journal or blog, record at least three choices you made around food today.
...If you make a weak or poor choice, figure out how to describe it without using negative words such as CHEAT
Day 70 with 30 days to go
No good or bad
"I started the day being so good but then someone brought a birthday cake to the office and I was really bad. Have you ever described your eating habit like that?
Eating is not a moral issue so you can't apply behavioral codes to what you do with food. Eating cookies or potato chips (both my weaknesses) doesn't make a person bad. It's impossible to be "GOOD" or "BAD" with eating. So stop using those words to describe yourself on your food intake.
Who said it was bad?
Who decided that a carrot was good and a brownie was bad? We measure dieting efforts against a list of foods that are either allowed or not allowed. Then you chastise yourself for eating from the no-no list.
We have to break the habit of calling ourselves good or bad. Again, refer to your weight loss plan as your eating choices. You can say " I made a good choice this morning by eating a healthy breakfast. This afternoon I made a poorer choice when I ate three brownies." Each of your actions is a CHOICE, so you can't punish yourself and say you were bad.
Take back your power around food by changing your language, acknowledge you are personally responsible for your decisions about what you eat.
...Write a sentence or two about the choices you made today
...Notice how often you hear other people use words like, cheating, good and bad while discussing diet efforts. When you hear someone use those terms, mentally rewrite the sentences in a way that refers to choices in life.
...Teach this concept to a friend or diet buddy. Catch the times when either of you slips up by saying cheat, good or bad to describe eating patterns or food intake. Have a contest and designate the person who says these phrases the fewest times as the winner.