Your habits can make or break you. What do yours say about you?
When you decide to lose weight, you must set realistic goals in order to be successful. You will want to break your goal down into many smaller goals so that you will experience a frequent feeling of success. Your larger success will be built on many small successes.
These small wins build the groundwork for you to succeed in a big way. Frequent success builds momentum and increased motivation. It helps to give you the confidence that yes, you can really do this!
You will do best by rewarding yourself every couple of pounds lost. This helps to reinforce the new habits you are learning. This approach works well with chimps, dogs, and yes, even us humans!
Your habits are well-established neural pathways in your brain. Learning new behaviors creates new neural pathways and helps to starve the old ones. By rewarding yourself, you are associating the new habit with pleasure instead of drudgery.
You are literally rewiring your brain when you create a new habit. It takes at least 30 days or longer to establish a new habit and a new neural pathway. We humans learn by repetition; as we repeatedly practice a new habit, the new neural pathway gets stronger than the old one.
Before you start to pursue you goal, take the time to get yourself in the right frame of mind. Look at the reasons you have failed in the past and get yourself ready to do some things differently. Remember the definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results! Prepare yourself to do something different.
Understand that change will bring up your fear and resistance. You prepare yourself for success by not tackling too much change at once. Change is unsettling and scary. Humans are programmed to resist change. There is a part of our brain called the amygdala. It is the oldest, most primitive part of our brain that deals with fear and survival. This is called the reptilian brain.
If the amygdala is overwhelmed with fear it will create extreme resistance and go into overwhelm flooding you with fear and anxiety. Studies show that when people are in a state of fear they cannot retain information. Fear makes it impossible to implement change, to learn, and to grow.
This is why it is important to implement slow, gradual changes. Give yourself plenty of time. There is no need to hurry. By going slowly, you will integrate the changes into your being so that they become permanent.
A slow loss equals a permanent loss!