We’ve all been there ….
You threw caution to the wind and indulged in your favourite treats over the holidays and now you have a major overeating hangover.
You feel guilt, shame and your self-esteem has taken a major dive.
I’ve been there too, but as time goes on I have realised something very valuable:
“I have learned it’s not how you fall but how you get up that truly matters.” – Linda McMahon
So, give yourself a break and accept your current reality. Recognise that you’re human and remember that the most successful people in the world slip up on their habits too.
What separates them isn’t their willpower or motivation, it’s their ability to get back on track quickly.
So, dust off those funky shoes and turn your setback in to a comeback.
Let’s explore 4 simple strategies to help you get your body back on track easily, so you can feel calm and confident again.
#1-Set SMART goals
I like to talk about goals that are SMART.
Why you may ask… well because when you set SMART Goals you can clarify your ideas and focus your efforts, which allows you to allocate your time in a way that promises the most return and the highest chance of achieving your goals.
SMART is an acronym and a SMART Goal is something that is: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-bound.
Specific – What specifically do you want to achieve? What will it look like?
Measurable – How can you track progress?
Achievable – With some stretch, are these achievable?
Realistic – Again, with stretch, are these in range?
Timebound – What’s the time frame on this—next week, end of June, early 2022?
Here are some examples of specific healthy eating goals that are SMART:
– I will eat a piece of fruit for my afternoon snack on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday next week instead of a cookie or potato chips.
-I will take a healthy lunch to work on Tuesday and Thursday next week instead of grabbing fast food
I believe that the magic ingredient for successful goal setting is excitement!
So tap into your key motivators —the things that excite you!
Here are some questions to help you:
-What can you get excited about when it comes to creating the change you want?
-How does that feel?
-Why is it so important and meaningful for you to achieve this now?
#2-Journaling for Success
Writing YOUR SMART goals.
If you want to achieve your goals, you need to write them down. Numerous studies have shown that vividly describing your goals in written form is strongly associated with goal success.
People who write out their goals regularly(daily) are 1.5 times more likely to successfully achieve them than people who don’t.
That’s a pretty big difference in goal achievement just from writing your goals on a piece of paper.
So why does writing your goals help?
-Well firstly, it’s great for your mental health.
-Secondly, you’re storing the information contained in your goal in a location (e.g. a piece of paper) that is very easy to access and review at any time.
-And lastly there’s encoding: which is the biological process by which the things we perceive travel to our brain’s hippocampus where they’re analysed. From there, decisions are made about what gets stored in our long-term memory and, in turn, what gets discarded. Writing improves that encoding process. In other words, when you write it down it has a much greater chance of being remembered.
Try these tips to help you get started with journaling:
-Try to write every day – Set aside a few minutes every day to write. This will help you engage with your goals and get excited about achieving them.
-Timing – I prefer to journal in the mornings as I find it sets me up with good focus for the day and I feel good as I have done something for myself too.
-Download your thoughts – I find my journal handy for writing down my thoughts, getting them out of my head and on to paper feels so much better.
-Write or draw whatever feels right. Your journal doesn’t need to follow any certain structure. It’s your own so you can get creative
#3-Schedule Your Goals into Your Life.
Giving your habits a specific space in your life will ensure that you action them.
Try these steps to help you :
A. Pick One of your SMART Goals from Strategy #1 above.
-For example, “eating less junk food” is a bit vague.
-Eating take out dinner less than twice per week is much more specific and easier to identify and measure.
B. List everything you need to do to achieve your goal
-What will you need to do daily/weekly?
-How much are you I going to do and how often will you do it?
-When are you going to do it?
C. Schedule in time in your daily planner to action your goal
-Use your daily to-do list or diary to schedule the specific action – even if it’s identifying the nights you will eat junk food!
D. Identify obstacles
-Identify things and situations that trip you up – what might hold up your progress with this goal?
-Brainstorm solutions to the above (think of previous success)
-Tweak your plan if necessary
I believe that consistency is one of the major keys to achieving your goals. Do less but do it consistently!
This quote says it all:
“We become what we want to be by consistently being what we want to become each day”-Richard G. Scott
Here are some tips to help you:
-Create one habit/behaviour at a time and be consistent with it.
-It will become second nature after a while.
-Set a goal for practicing that behaviour.
-You can use a calendar to track your behaviour over 1 month
-Reward yourself for being consistent.
Lastly assess your progress on a regular basis by asking yourself the following questions:
-What didn’t work?
-What can you do differently?
Now it’s over to you…
- What can you get excited about when it comes to creating the change you want?
I would love to hear your feedback, thoughts and any questions you have on this article.
Please tell me in the comments below.