SUBSCRIBE: New content added daily.
Day 7 Weight Loss: 3 Steps to Break Habits that Stop Us from Losing Weight – There are a number of things we can do to help us lose weight if we consistently do them. The problem is we have built habits over time that stand in our way of any changes we want to make. Breaking or changing long standing habits takes time, but when we do break them miracles happen. We weren’t born with these habits. We learned them after repeating behaviors. They are even tied to psychological triggers that developed because of our consistent behavior, attaching them to us emotionally. Behaviors become habits when we do them automatically without thinking and that’s where the problem lays. All is not lost because if there is a will there is a way.
What can we do to break long standing habits of eating, being a couch potato, or anything that is stopping us from losing weight? These three steps to break habits that stop us from losing weight will help:
Think about the habit and become aware of it. What is it we do that is causing us to gain weight? For example, if we eat a slice of chocolate cake every day we gain weight. The first time we ate it, did it make us feel better? When we don’t have a slice of cake when we want it, how does that make us feel? Once we answer any questions about a habit that is the first step. We become aware how we developed the habit in the first place and can see how it is standing in our way. By identifying how we feel when we take a slice of cake or not then we can understand our psychological trigger and our emotional attachment to the habit.
While thinking about the habit, begin to write down the questions and the answers. Writing is a powerful tool to help us identify habits that are keeping us from losing weight. We can do some brainstorming by writing out quickly anything that comes to mind that we can do differently instead of acting on the habit.
Becoming creative helps to break bad habits. Starting small is important otherwise we feel overwhelmed. Whenever we start to act on the bad habit, we must stop; pick something from the list to do instead, creating a new habit. Stop! Don’t eat chocolate cake, choose a slice of apple, or anything else but not chocolate cake. When shopping for groceries, don’t buy chocolate cake. Buy healthy snacks from the list that we enjoy eating, replacing the cake.
Another way to break bad eating habits is to say something like this, “When I go to the refrigerator, I will eat three slices of cucumber.” Be sure to have sliced cucumber in a bowl, or sliced carrot, or whatever replaces unhealthy snacks. We create a new trigger “going to the refrigerator” with new behavior “eat three slices of cucumber,” rejecting the old psychological trigger.
Starting small is important because it makes change easier. Gaining success breaking small habits will help achieve greater success the more bad habits that are broken. Bon appetite!
Changing habits to eat healthier is something that I am doing. Sometimes I get so involved in something, I forget to eat. The other day, I was doing research and I didn’t stop for hours. My children actually got on me about not eating or exercising. It was at that point that I realized that I have a big problem that is stopping me from losing weight. I have to eat during the day, healthy meals and snacks, otherwise I won’t lose weight.
Weight loss is connected to eating food that help burn fat such as watermelon, celery, greens, and protein just for example. When I don’t eat, I am not burning fat, meaning I am not losing weight. Burning fat during the week is my priority. So now I say, “After I review three or four websites, I will eat two apple slices.” I slice an apple and keep it in a plastic bag in the refrigerator and eat two after looking at three or four websites. I think about other ways to plan adding a new behavior after doing something that will trigger the new behavior, creating a healthy habit.
I discovered that I have a hard time exercising too even though I know that I should exercise 30 minutes a day. I exercise for 15 minutes and then I stop. I decided today to chunk it; 30 minutes into two 15 minute sessions. A thirty minute walk outside can be done in three ten minute sessions. As soon as I am done writing this post, I will exercise for 15 minutes and later this evening, exercise again for 15 minutes. This week Huffington Post has a short article about Helen Mirren’s fitness advice and it makes sense. Helen says to start small. Helen also uses the Wii Fit Plus to exercise. See her video below saying how much she enjoys using it and how easy it was to set up.
One thing I noticed, I feel very different in my inner world since doing my spiritual course, A Course in Weight Loss. The spiritual course is the reason why I am gaining insight about my habits of eating and exercising, especially the new awareness. Meditation ties it all together too. The body-mind-spirit connections do make a difference in losing weight.