How to stay disciplined on a diet:
The reality is, outside of work, discipline can be a bitch. It’s hard. Because of this, It messes with your mind, life and family. If you can’t stay disciplined on a diet then the belief is that you suck as a person and you don’t have control. This leads into guilt which leads to more compensational eating and the cycle continues. Therefore, the goal with a diet should lead towards a permanent stage of life.
In light of this, the goal of this blog is to explore the stages to get to how to stay disciplined on a diet.
Discipline has great intention behind it. Most of us can say we are pretty good at our jobs. So why can’t we do great on a diet?
First of all, you are surrounded by other people who work. So your environment sets you up to do great. Because of this, you don’t really have other options. If you don’t do great you will lose money and money is important for your life. Therefore, you will work because if you don’t show up and perform it will cost you too much. In contrast, if you gain weight, you will still be able to have a home, Netflix, entertainment, help other people and whatever else you want. In contrast, if you lose your job…you lose the ability to have entertainment, food and all of those other things listed.
How to stay disciplined on a diet comes down to 1 thing:
Consistency. So the question is how do you stay consistent. This is simple, but definitely not easy. But what’s listed below is a system and a few ideas that can help you fight for discipline that leads to permanent change. Check it out and if we can help out at all please let us know.
Overview of the topics in relation to staying disciplined on a diet:
What is Discipline or Willpower
Mindset: the beginning of discipline
Emotions are awesome unless you eat them: Notice and Name
Shorterm vs Lifetime: consistency
Plan for the worst
What Does Environment have to do with staying disciplined on a diet
Dont Focus on Being Perfect but Good enough
Focus on the process, not the outcome
Blank Slate: Give yourself some grace
What is Discipline/Willpower:
We all get the gist when it comes to discipline and willpower. Work hard and get some results by doing it consistently each day. When a diet comes along, Dianne doesn’t really want to follow the diet. Diane wants to lose weight. For the most part, people that we work with come in and want to get on a food kick for 1-3 months, lose the weight, feel awesome sauce and then go celebrate with food.
Diane doesn’t have any systems in place.
It has only been drudgery for the past 3 months.
There has only been a focus on getting Weight Watchers and sticking to these certain foods.
All this is good and fine but she is ready to leave the program. She leaves and in 5 months the weight is back..again.
I’ve seen it happen to about 8 clients this year alone. One gained 60 pounds back.
Mindset: the beginning of discipline on a diet
Food is not moral
This weekend I ate “bad”
Similarly, I was “bad” this weekend with food.
In my mind, I want to eat “clean,” but I just can’t do it.
Food is not moral. Mindset is everything. Food is on a continuum from quality to not quality. Diane isn’t a bad person for eating cheesecake and fried rice. Joe isn’t a good person when he eats a salad with chicken and no croutons. One was less quality and one was higher quality.
In comes the emotion of guilt. Together, with eating back and guilt things spiral quickly.
Most people suck with their emotions. Men and women. What do they do with them? They cover them up with sensual pleasure. What’s a quick sensual pleasure?
Food or other things. But food is a strong go-to for many people. Then guilt happens. After that, then food again. It’s a thing. Look at your life. Stress driving home? Let’s grab fast food. Additionally, you get home and get off the phone with the electric company and it’s a crapshoot just to talk with someone. 5 minutes later you’re eating ice cream. Personally, I crave something sweet every time I walk through the door when I get home.
It’s not that it’s bad morally but it is poor quality and ultimately you eat more calories than you should. Therefore, the best thing is to change your mindset and take the moral tag off of food. It will take time but this is the first step. Now check out this plan below.
Are you ready to change?
First of all, are you ready to focus on a diet? I know you want to lose weight but are you willing to focus on the process to get you there or do you just dream of the outcome?
Some are extremely resistant to changing and really do not want to do the work that is required to get them where they want to go. Change sucks. Most people would rather be miserable than change because:
You are used to it
Its easier to not change
There is fear with change even when that change is good
Thinking on how to stay disciplined with a diet:
If you are ready to change you have to get your emotions involved and you will have some motivation to get going on this thing. David has this ideal in mind for what his body will look like and how he will feel after he drops the weight. It’s exciting. But what happens when the emotions wane?
Use those emotions to begin the planning process. Take the time to prepare so taking action will be easy. There will be no thinking, only doing.
Preparation for staying disciplined with a diet: The Missing Link
First and foremost, this is the missing link.
This may be the most underrated process in this system of staying disciplined. Most people contemplate, get excited about change and then take action for a short period of time. And then….crap.
Today, I failed and I don’t like this. This came out of nowhere and I wasn’t prepared for this. This is too difficult.
The preparation process involves a commitment to stay accountable. It involves planning so that when something unexpected happens you are ready to deal with it. If you mess up (when you mess up) you can come back from failure really quickly.
Most people do not want to stay in this process long enough to bear the fruit for the long term. There is fear that if you stay in this subplot too long then you will never get around to actually achieving your goal.
The lizard brain runs rampant and just wants results now.
Push back. Preparation and long term thought will give you the greatest results of staying disciplined with a diet. Fail here and fail for the long term.
Be prepared to take action. Give yourself some grace. Continue in perseverance. Commit to the process.
One of the more important things to prepare for is setting up your surroundings.
What Does Environment have to do with staying disciplined on a diet:
This is the place where you start to recognize your surroundings at work, environments at home, and your daily driving. You have to figure out what your triggers are and what they might be under specific circumstances. You have to recognize that this is the new you. Your identity is a healthy person. It’s not that you “can’t” eat that brownie. Instead, it’s that you “don’t.” See that It’s a choice. You are in control.
This is also the space to redefine who you are. It is most certainly proven that when you identify yourself as a healthy person then you will act more like a healthy person. Similarly, you can list out the values of a healthy person and what priorities will change because of it.
Maybe this is:
-Cooking at home 4 nights a week
-Getting rid of sweets or only having a certain amount
-Limiting to 3 desserts a week instead of 7
-Meal prepping on a regular basis
-Having someone keep you accountable or talk to when the struggle is difficult
If you are out for a business dinner or lunch choose what you will eat before you go so you don’t make a last minute emotional decision.
The reality is most people don’t prepare. They don’t write down a plan. Do this and succeed. Be as specific as possible but be ready and realistic as well. If not, you will fail.
One other thought to this is to maybe only change one thing at a time. For instance, focus your entire energy on eating an extra serving of vegetables for the next month. If you get to 90% consistency then move onto something else. If not, figure it out until you get this down. In light of this, just pick something and go for it.
Short Term vs Lifetime: Consistency + Planning to stay disciplined on a diet
Stop being worried about how to stay disciplined on a diet for 2 months. This is not a long term fix. Moreover, stop cycling through the death roll of diets. It’s not worth it. Instead, you can focus on one change at a time. Make this a 2 year goal. Because of this, you will see results quickly but it’s the habits that are more important for the long term.
Focus on the process, not the outcome:
**If you focus on the outcome, you will have success for a bit..and then lose it.
**Instead, focus on the habits that get you success and you will have the outcome for life.
Action for how to stay disciplined with a diet:
It’s only week 2 and you’re passing your favorite restaurant.
You’re stressed out. It’s late.
You just need food.
4 things occur:
- You committed today that you would eat more like a healthy person would
- There is the choice to not go to that restaurant
- Instead, you already have food prepared at home for the week. (Meal Planning Success!) Just heat it up.
- On the other hand, decide to take a different route home if it’s too hard to stay away from the BBQ
If you prepared before you hand, this will go great. In contrast, your emotions will dictate your actions.
Emotions are awesome unless you eat them: Notice and Name
Above all, depending on how you deal with anxiety, fear, shame, guilt, embarrassment, even boredom can change how you stay disciplined with a diet.
You are consistent and you rock it for a month. Things seem to be going well. You still have some sweets in your fridge or you drive past your favorite restaurant because “you can’t have it” but you want it. Your goal is in the back of your mind and at this moment it is strong enough to keep you going.
However, it’s only week 2. Ughh. Instead, refocus on your plan. You are committed. You don’t eat that food. It’s your choice. Also, your emotions don’t dictate your actions. Instead, your emotions are in indicator that you need to process what’s going on in your life and not cover it up with food.
Stick to the plan.
Maintenance: Failure in discipline with a diet.
You’ve prepped. You have been going strong for 3 weeks. Now is the hard part because your motivation is waning.
Week 4 your job is stressing you out. You have a relationship that has conflict. Even your dog pisses you off. Someone brought donuts to work and you just said screw it and ate 3 donuts and a kolache. Now you feel guilt, shame and worthlessness. Because of the mess up, learn from this occurrence.
This is the prime time. At this moment, the desire is to give it all up. It’s too hard. It’s not worth it.
Instead, plan for the worst
Choose to not give up on the discipline of the diet. This is a cycle. It happens. Because of this, take the time to reset as fast as possible:
-Re-prepare: What happened and what can you do in the future to change your actions?
-Respond and take another step into action
Do not miss out on this learning opportunity. As a matter of fact, move forward and recognize what will take place if you keep going forward and persevering for the next 6 months. This will change your life! Succeed and change or fail and learn. Either way you move forward, if you don’t quit.
Maybe next time there are donuts and you are stressed to the max you recognize it and get the hell out of the building. Go for a walk for 10 minutes. Breath for 10 minutes. Call an accountability partner. Do what you have to do to not eat freakin’ 4 donuts. Figure out a game plan so when the going gets tough you have a plan to focus on.
This becomes automatic over time. You learned the skills for your job. With this, you can also learn emotional and physical skills with food. Remember, it takes time, failure, and patience.
Don’t Focus on Being Perfect but Good enough
We all, for the most part, don’t excel at our job for 3-5 years. Why would this be any different? You can get a handle on anything for 6 months to a year but it’s the nuance situations that come up that you have to learn from. In light of this, if you mess up, don’t just throw in the towel. Take a day or two to figure out what went wrong. Additionally, go back to contemplation and preparation.
Reset, move forward. You have to give yourself some grace and realize that perfection is the enemy of getting to your goal. Most people fail and then its game over…this is where the shame and the quitting comes. Instead, give yourself some grace.
Recycling the process to stay disciplined with a diet:
Finally, keep it up. Remember that this is a lifestyle goal. Don’t worry about the next year. Instead, worry about the next 5 years. Keep your mind right, emotions in check, and recycle through this whole process several times. Therefore, it may take you several months to make permanent changes to stay disciplined on a diet. Remember, the whole issue is whether you give up or not.
So, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want help with these habits and to create your one plan so you can be confident and have accountability.