I used to see food as a reward and exercise as punishment. Since I changed my mindset, everything is so much easier. I used to have ‘cheat’ days and see ‘rest’ days as ‘do nothing days’. Now I just go about my business and get so much more done. Here are some of the mindset shifts I have made and that I help my clients to make that are so effective when you are trying to be healthier.
The very word ‘cheat’ gives me the shivers. You should never feel like you are cheating when you approach food from a healthy mindset. It can be extremely damaging to your self-worth because it means you judge yourself for all the choices you make.
When you just put everything down to being ‘good’ and ‘bad’ and therefore see yourself as worthy or unworthy then it stops you from moving forward in a constructive way. For example if you have some food and decide you are just a bad person for having it then you are unlikely to be kind enough to yourself to figure out why you made that choice and get to the bottom of what drove you to make it. If it’s a habit that you desperately want to quit then just labeling yourself a demon isn’t going to help you constructively move forward and have a game plan for the next time you are faced with a similar decision.
The problem with seeing it like this is that:
So how can we overcome this cycle?
The key is to strive for progress not perfection.
You can work on making better choices over time and get to the bottom of what drives your decisions. You can eat something or skip a workout without feeling like you aren’t making any progress. When we strive for perfection, it can stop us from taking action. In a ‘perfection’ mindset, if we skip a workout we think we have failed and don’t do anything whereas if we don’t exercise on a ‘progress’ mindset then we might ask ourselves ‘What can I do instead’?
Move on when you feel guilty for a choice you made.
We all have days where we don’t achieve as much as we wanted but instead of letting it unravel all our efforts then its important to think about how we could do it better next time and take stock of what made it so hard for you to achieve so much that day. If you know this then next time you will be prepared and ready to deal with it.
Try to see exercise as a privilege and not a punishment.
“I have to exercise” becomes “I get to exercise”. This mindset shift is one of the biggest game changers. It stops exercise from being a chore and lets you enjoy it! Your body is amazing and capable of so much.
Imagine if your mental energy wasn’t constantly wasted on weighing up your worthiness to eat something or figuring out how to burn it off. Imagine if what your life would feel like if you weren’t constantly feeling guilty and feeling like a failure. How much more energy would you have then? Energy that you could put towards creating the healthy life that you want? That’s where I want you to get to.
What mindset shifts could you make this week to help you get further on your weight loss journey?
As always I want to hear from YOU about what mindset shifts you want to make but struggle with?
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