Having a positive self-image and setting the right goals are very important for losing weight. Without the right mindset it’s difficult or even impossible to lose weight and keep it off. Just as you can shape your body with proper diet and exercise, you can shape your self-image and mindset with the right tools.
One of the first steps to having the right mindset for losing weight is to set proper goals.
When I set a goal to lose weight, I tend to feel worse if I don’t lose as much as I’d like to, or even put on more weight. An excellent method of feeling better about losing weight is to set realistic goals. When you meet goals that you set for yourself, you’ll feel much better. For instance, if your goal is to lose 1 pound each day, you might not meet this goal and will feel worse. However, if your goal is to go for a ten-minute walk every day, you can easily complete this task and feel much better about yourself. Here are a few things you should do in order to set appropriate weight loss goals.
- Write it down
It may seem silly, but writing down a goal increases the chances that you’ll reach it. It doesn’t have to be something fancy like a framed document; you could simply email yourself your goals, or write them down on a notebook or journal.
When you write down your goals and look at them, you realize that you’ve just entered into a contract with yourself. Realizing that it is an obligation will make you more likely to work towards that goal. In addition, you’re not likely to forget those goals or trivialize them.
- Be realistic
One of the worst things you can do is to set unrealistic goals for yourself. We frequently do this to ourselves, and are likely to set extreme and unrealistic weight loss goals, such as “lose 20 pounds this month”. It might be phrased differently e.g. “Fit into my tiny dress for the party next month” but the goal itself is unrealistic.
Setting an unrealistic and demanding goal is not helpful in any way. First off, you’re quite likely to be intimidated by the demands of the goal, and may be too scared to take action towards it. Secondly, when you ultimately fail to reach the goal, you’ll be depressed and unhappy, and give up on trying to lose weight. On the other hand, if you keep your goals realistic, you won’t have these problems.
- Be positive
Always phrase your goals in a positive manner such as “I will go out for a walk every day” rather than “I will stop being so lazy”, or “I will eat an apple each day as my afternoon snack” instead of “I will stop wolfing chips every afternoon”. Make it something you can do, not something you should stop doing.
- Be precise
Make your goal something precise and measureable. Instead of saying “I’ll go running” say “I will run for 30 minutes every day”. This preciseness means you will stay accountable to yourself, since you can measure your progress easily. Again, make sure it’s something you do, rather than an amount of weight or inches to be lost.
There are various small goals you may need to set for yourself on your weight-loss journey. You may have eating goals and exercise goals. Once you’ve identified and written down your targets, you can start working towards them.
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