Change is occurring whether you’re ready for it or not. Learn to make change work for you.
Congratulations. You’ve decided that this is the year you are going to get serious about your weight loss goals. You want to get fit and start to lead a healthier lifestyle.
You are ready to begin the journey towards a healthier life. Every journey begins with an assessment of where you currently are. Having an understanding of the dynamics of change will help you to better navigate the challenges that will occur on your journey to permanent weight loss.
Here are the stages of change. What stage of the journey are you in?
Excuses, excuses, excuses. You may complain about being overweight but you have no real intention about doing anything about anytime soon. You feel rather hopeless about it all. You may have resigned yourself to just staying overweight. You may say things to yourself like, “I’ll never lose weight anyway. I can never stay on a diet. What’s the use.”
You may have chronic health problems associated with your obesity. You may feel hopeless to do anything about these things, feeling that they’re beyond your control.
Contemplation Stage – The Beginning Of Awareness
You have intentions to lose weight and make some healthy changes in your lifestyle.
You may have said, “This is the year I’m going to lose weight and get in shape!” Or you may be telling yourself, “I need to lose weight.” Yet, you haven’t taken any steps to make any changes.
Every day you wake up with intentions on changing your behavior but it hasn’t translated into action. You may buy and read a lot of books on diet and nutrition but all the information stays inside your head, not really helping you. You may be a chronic contemplator (a thinker, not a doer) and have a problem translating knowledge into action.
Preparation Stage – Looking For The Solution
You’re preparing to take action. You may be looking into various weight loss and exercise programs or classes to see what will fit with your lifestyle. You may have even cleaned out your cupboards of junk food. You may have even bought some exercise videos but you haven’t started yet. You may have even set a target date to lose weight by.
The Action Stage – The Rubber Meets The Road
This is it! You have begun to take action. Congratulations! You’re working out and eating better. You may have joined a gym or a class. You may have started a formal weight loss program.
You may have been working out for the past couple months. You’ve cut out junk food and you are starting to lose weight. You feel motivated and hopeful. It feels so good to be finally moving towards your goal!
This is the time you need to be prepared for setbacks. Life has a way of getting in the way of the best-laid plans. Especially in the first 6 months of implementing changes, setbacks can derail you and veer you off course. This is the time to prepare yourself so that you can get back on track quickly after a setback.
Remember if you veer off track, you can start again tomorrow. Success means picking yourself up and starting over with a clean slate the very next day. Every day is another chance to do it right.