Life has a way of fouling up our best laid plans. First you resolve to keep your car clean more often: “I’ll wash it every Saturday morning.” Nice, you have a plan. Saturday comes along and somebody calls, inviting you to go golfing. You think, “I was going to clean the car, but I’ll do it when I get home,” and off you go. Maybe you do wash the car later that day, but perhaps you tell yourself, “I will wash it every Saturday. It really wasn’t that dirty.”
Subsequent Saturdays come along and someone invites you camping so you’re now in the woods realizing, “Oh, I can’t wash the car from here now, can I?”
Another Saturday rolls around and you have forgotten all about your car washing plan, so despite the fact that you are not doing anything you are thinking, “I don’t really FEEL like washing the car right now… I will do it later,” and so it goes.
“Life is what happens when you’re busy making different plans.” — John Lennon
It happens to all of us. You join the gym and immediately get the flu. Sign up for a training class and your car breaks down on the first night. When it’s time to water the grass there is not any rain in sight, but wash the car and what happens? It rains. These examples aren’t meant to give you a pessimistic outlook but simply to point out why persistence in the face of obstacles is what separates the haves from the have nots.
It’s not what happens but what you DO with what happens that matters.
The perfect approach is one-day-at-a-time, or even lesser intervals depending on what you are attempting to do. If you’re trying to give up smoking, you might wish to take things half an hour at a time. With food, it can be one meal at a time, one hunger pang or craving at a time, or whatever interval works for you.
Choose your Time Interval then Make it Happen
In case you say you may never do one thing again (smoke, overeat, over drink) it never lasts, however, in case you wake up one morning and decide for that day, and only that day, you will follow your plan, then it possibly can actually happen. There’s an actual rush of accomplishment while you get up and realize that yesterday you did it; you completed what you set out to do. Each accomplishment makes it just that much easier to resolve again to follow, and it will get easier and easier.
Let the successes build, and let the lapses pass. It takes commitment to become proficient, no matter what you are learning, so plan to persist. Small lapses aren’t failures, they’re only lapses, and you then decide to do better the next time. Doing this lets you pre-plan when you realize you’ll not keep up with your eating plan, thereby making it okay on occasion to over indulge. Holidays, particular occasions… individuals who maintain a wholesome weight do that all the time without thinking. Whenever you give your self permission to indulge, it is amazing how much less you’ll really feel like indulging. Take away the forbidden fruit and it is simply an apple.