It’s the New Year. It’s a time for New Beginnings, for New Commitments, and of course New Year’s Resolutions. If you have weight loss-focused resolutions for 2015, I’m here to share how you can make them happen this year. I remember when I used to have those resolutions, I think I had weight loss resolutions for nine years straight and it wasn’t till the 10th year that I was able to make them happen for real. I don’t want you to have to take that much time to get to your goal, so here’s how to bypass nine years of not reaching your goal and dive straight into success. The secret is:
Be Clear about Why You want to Lose Weight and Who You’re Doing it For
A lot of us have what I call “obligatory” weight loss goals. We might be doing it because our spouse or our parents think we need to lose weight. Or we might even choose to do it because we think we should fit into the world’s image of beauty. The problem with obligatory weight loss goals is that they have no conviction. There isn’t any heart behind them. They are all talk and no action. And all talk and no action will see you still at the starting line on December 31st, 2015.
Being clear about why you’re losing weight will give you conviction because you are aware of why and this awareness is enough to help you stay on track with the actions that are necessary to get you to your goal.
Here are two guiding questions that you can use to find your “why:”
Why is Now the Time for Me to Lose the Weight?
This injects a sense of urgency into your desire to lose weight. If it’s urgent enough, you’re more likely to ignore the voice in your head that calls for you to quit on the days that it gets hard. Sample answers to these questions are:
• If I don’t do it now my blood pressure might climb even more dangerously than it is
• My gynecologist tells me that losing weight is affecting my ability to get pregnant and I want to have a baby by the end of the year
• I’m getting married this year and I want to look good in my wedding pictures
• My hubby and I are planning to have a baby by the end of the year and I want to start my pregnancy at a healthy weight (FYI: This was the reason that got me to my target weight in no time and helped me stay there till we got pregnant)
As you can see, the timing could be related to a health issue that you have, a bigger life goal, an event that you have to prepare for, or just because you want to end the year looking better than you started. All you need is an answer with a sense of time and urgency i.e. there’s no right or wrong answer. If you can’t come up with an answer that has a sense of time of urgency, you might want to ask yourself if you really believe you need to or even want to lose weight.
Who am I doing this for?
We choose to lose weight for different reasons, but I’ve found that the most successful ‘losers’ are those who do it for themselves. Your family and friends might influence your reason, but having anyone but yourself as the core reason for your weight loss resolution can lead you down the path to failure. Here’s why:
• No one cares about you more than yourself (at least no one should)
• The people in your life who you might be doing it for might have ulterior motives that are not in your best interest (e.g. to control you or make you feel bad about yourself)
• The people in your life who you might be doing it for have other things going on in their lives that might make it difficult for them to be as invested in your change process as you need them to be
But what about if you are doing it for your husband and children, what if you are doing it so that you can be there for them? Well that’s your family influencing the reason NOT being the reason. At the core of it, a reason like that means that YOU want to be around to grow old with your spouse and to see your children grow up and have children of their own. This reason is very powerful. So remember when probing who you are doing it for, make sure that the answer at its very core is YOU.
Once you’ve established your personal sense of time and urgency and you’ve drilled down to a reason that has you at the center, success is within your grasp. You see, doing what it takes to lose weight can be a self-centered endeavor. It’s self-centered because it requires you to put yourself and your wellbeing at the center of a lot of decisions.
It’s self-centered because to lose weight:
• You’ll have to move more, which means that you’ll have to put your need to take the time to work out ahead of your friend’s need to go to the mall
• You’ll have to change how you eat, which means you’ll probably find yourself saying no to a lot of food offers that you once said yes to
• You’ll have to cook and eat healthier, which might require you to change how you cook for your family and this means you’ll be asking them to do something for you that they might not be 100% behind
Because it requires you to put YOU at the center of your existence, it will be difficult. But when you know why it’s important to do it now, you’ll be more likely to put YOU first more often than not and more importantly YOU’LL BE MORE LIKELY TO SUCCEED.
Here’s wishing you a 2015 filled with success at your weight loss endeavor and so much more!