When I work with women to overcome their chronic dieting, bingeing, restricting, or whatever their struggle may be, one of the most important things we discuss is the type of expectations they have for themselves. Both about their ability to change and how well as how the change process should go. Read that again.
What I often hear is,
“I just need to be more disciplined.”
“I know I need to try harder.”
“I just can’t seem to get things under control”
This mentality, paired with the desire to make changes quickly, will get you a one-way ticket back to the hamster wheel. We have to understand expectations like this are only going to keep you stuck and frustrated. Not to mention that we’re often working with deep-rooted habits that have been programmed into us for years. These bad boys take time to change- not a month, not 21-days, or any of the other quick fix habit breaking books out there. They also require awareness, practice, patience in order to be changed. And in case you haven’t noticed, we’re not very good with being patient or taking things one step at a time; but that’s what it takes. Sorry, Charlie.
So if we go about this whole process thinking,
“No more bread, an hour of cardio everyday, and 20 pounds off in four weeks!”
Your’re just going to let yourself down. Not only is this all unrealistic but it’s unnecessary and most of all, not sustainable. If you’re anything like I was, after a week or two of living on salads and forcing myself to go to the gym everyday, I found myself knee-deep in Oreos. Why? Because I placed horribly unrealistic expectations on myself that only lead me to binge. I guess I just needed more willpower, right? Because it couldn’t possibly be that my belief system was flawed or that what I was doing wasn’t working so it had to be. Just like it has to be you.
You know what the definition of insanity is?
“Doing the same thing over and over, expecting different results.”
Day in, and day out, I meet with women who want to be free from their struggle with food but they’re going about it in the wrong way; and it’s by no fault of their own. We’ve been taught to make drastic changes, cut out food groups, and work harder at being more disciplined. But the truth is, in order to make long-term change, we need to be willing to go about it in a different way; one that challenges the traditional diet mentality and food rules and allows us to work at our own pace, making simple, practical changes.
Check out this video and see if any of this sounds like you? Also, please try to ignore the unflattering freeze frame, Facebook was clearly trying to capture me at my best 🙂
Why Unrealistic Expectations are Keeping You Stuck
Posted by Lindsey Mathes Nutrition on Sunday, June 4, 2017
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