Life has a way of knocking us off course, but only when we let it. There are proven steps that you can take that will not only get your diet back on track but also build your momentum so that it seems silly to stop. In this post, I share 3 things you can do.
3 Steps to Get Your Diet Back on Track [Video]
- Setting a 40-day goal teaches you how to get past hurdles.
- You’ll stick with your plan if it has the 3Es (Easy-to-Follow, Enjoyable, Effective)
- A simple reward system will keep you on track when faced with temptation
Get Your Diet Back on Track [Video]
In this video, you’ll learn…
- The benefits of a 40-day commitment in order too get your diet back on track.
- Strategies for sticking to your goals.
- How to set up an effective reward system.
Set a 40-Day Commitment
The first thing is to realize that nothing is accomplished without commitment. When it comes to committing to a change in your diet, I like to do so in 40-day increments.
Initially, the concept of 40 days at a time grew out of my Christian faith, but as I continued to set 40-day goals for myself and clients, I found that this length of time has many advantages.
For one thing, it teaches you lessons and forces you to find ways to get past hurdles.
In 40 days, there will be pizza commercials and birthday cake. If you did not set a firm commitment to stay away from these foods, you will start to bargain with yourself and make “new commitments”.
For instance, you might start to say, “Well, if I have one cupcake tonight, I’ll spend an extra hour at the gym tomorrow.”
Those short-term commitments don’t teach us; they punish us. Instead of growing and developing new coping mechanisms that can only come from working through problems, we feel drained and disappointed.
Create the 3Es
Nothing gets done without commitment, but what do you commit to doing? Back in 2007, a panel found that people stick with their plan when it meets what I call the 3Es, meaning it is Easy-to-Follow, Enjoyable, and Effective.
In other words, to change your diet, you need to change your habits in a way that is doable without being overwhelming, that challenges you, without making you so miserable that you don’t want to get out of bed, and that is big enough to produce noticeable results.
You can accomplish a lot in 40 days, but you will stop moving toward your goal if what you are doing takes over your life, makes you miserable, or lacks crystal clear evidence that the effort you are putting in is creating the results you want. Actions that meet the 3Es aren’t always easy to identify, but two examples are intermittent fasting and quitting sugar.
Here’s where it gets tricky because when you change your diet, it is not unusual to feel worse before you feel better.
For instance, many of you know my 4 daily habits for weight loss which is also known as my 0,1,2,3 strategy. The strategy shows you how to stop eating sugar. The challenge is that sugar is an addictive substance so when you give it up, your body goes through withdrawal and you spend a few days with headaches, feeling moody and wiped out.
Mark Your Progress
You need to have some type of reward system to get you past this initial hurdle, and that stays in place to help you get through future hurdles. Your system needs to be simple to implement and provide you with clear, visual feedback of your progress. You can do that with a pen and a calendar.
What I suggest that you do is open your calendar and pick Day One, then count 40 days and mark that date as Day 40. Each day that you stick to your plan, you get to put an X through the day.
I recommend that you display your calendar somewhere that you will see it often because if you’ve ever done this, you know the power it has. It changes your internal dialogue.
Thoughts like “Well, maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to have a small cupcake” change to “ Man, I’d really like a cupcake, and it stinks that I can’t have one, but I want that X on my calendar.”
The thing is that life does not slow down so we can calmly work toward our goals. In fact, sometimes it seems like life conspires against us. But you can accomplish a lot in 40 days.
Commit to a plan that meets the three E’s and keep your momentum alive with a simple reward system. You will be so proud of yourself 40 days from now.
If you want to follow my 0123 strategy for the next 40 days, you can download a copy of the strategy for free. You’ll also get access to four videos that show you how to get the most out of the strategy. You can do this!
About the Author
Dr. Becky Gillaspy, DC graduated Summa Cum Laude with research honors from Palmer College of Chiropractic in 1991.