I was stuck in this place for a long time. And multiple times. I kinda lived here for most of my life. You know, that place where you really, really want to lose weight and you think about it all the time but you haven’t done it yet. You’ve started, maybe you start a lot, but then you quit. Or, you plan like a ninja but fail to execute your plan. So today we’re going to take a hard look at that and at why you haven’t lost weight yet.
Let me start with a disclaimer: you will probably get defensive reading this. It might make you uncomfortable. Let THAT be a little red flag that you might need to suspend your ego and really lean in.
Be more committed to fixing than to defending.
For me, oftentimes, part of being a coach is drawing attention to that which you don’t want to draw attention. If you are defending or justifying in your head, your ego is holding you back.
Approach this without emotion. Approach this as an exercise in helping you get un-stuck. This is not judgemental and it is not an attack. With all that out of the way, let’s talk about why you haven’t lost weight yet.
- You’re too comfortable
You might not like your body. I get it. I’m not suggesting that you do. But at the same time, we only change when the pain of staying where we are is greater than the pain or discomfort of change.
If you haven’t done the work, if you don’t consistently make good choices, it is because you perceive that change will be less pleasant than staying where you are.
There are two ways this can change: Either your current situation can get worse – more painful or uncomfortable – or you can lower the perceieved pain of change and transition.
Anything you fear about change is imaginary. Anything. Everything. Of course it is! Fear in and of itself is imaginary! It is a projection. It isn’t happening right now! You have negative anticipation of something in the future. THAT’S NOT REAL. You can only feel that fear and negative anticipation if you are not practicing mindfulness. Period.
- You’re focused on the wrong thing
If you haven’t made changes that you want to make, I’ve got news for you: your issue isn’t about diet and exercise. Your issue is a mental one. So if you’re focusing on a food plan and a fitness plan, you’re a hampster on a wheel. You haven’t addressed the issue. Action vs inaction or consistency vs inconsistency has nothing to do with chicken & broccoli.
We love to plan. We love food lists and meal plans. We busy ourselves with them while simultaneously beating ourselves up for not doing the work. Dude. Focus = wrong. You’ve got to tackle the mindset side of things. Sure, fat loss is 90% nutrition but what we eat is 90% mental and emotional.
- You think the little things don’t matter
A little bite here, a piece of candy there, a soda, etc. You have constant chatter from your inner toddler, talking you into choices that won’t help you reach your goals, and one of the primary arguments that always works on you is, “it’s just this one little thing. It won’t matter”
I’ve got news for you: the little things are the ONLY things that matter. Afterall, what are the big things? They’re just a collection of the little things! How do you achieve a big goal at work? A bunch of tiny actions and decisions. How do you pay off debt? Managing a million tiny transactions. How do you create a great relationship? Consistent small, thoughtful actions and interactions.
That voice telling you that it doesn’t matter is LYING. That is your comfort zone talking, trying to resist change. If you listen, you won’t change. If you confront that inner dialogue, acknowledge it and tell it that it’s a liar – congrats. You’re now free to change.
There’s no judgement here. If you fall into any of the above traps, don’t beat yourself up! Instead, celebrate the fact that you have a new awareness because awareness is the first step towards change! Start to study your behavior. Track your habits. Listen to your inner voice. When you pay attention to it, it loses it’s power over you in a major, major way! If you’re really struggling with the mindset side of things and if you regularly have negative self talk, I’m going to STRONGLY encourage you to consider the Overcoming Emotional Eating & Self Limiting Behaviors e-course. If you don’t tackle the mindset issues, all the focus on food and nutrition won’t get you what you’re wanting. You CAN change. You have everything in you to change right now. Unfortunately, that negative self-talk is so loud that you can’t hear the answers within yourself.