In week four of the Marathon Weight Loss Challenge, I've challenged both myself (and the other 950+ participants) to attack life's negativity with full force. Fight it with positive commands. In essence, grasp the power of positive thinking...
Think yourself skinny.
Think yourself fast.
Think yourself happy.
Self-talk is powerful. Whether you're conscious of it or not, there is a running conversation in your head at all times. Our thoughts are the primary creator of emotion, which guide our actions and ultimately determine our results. It is a cyclical cause and affect: thought = feeling = action = result. So if you want different results, you need to think differently.
Step One: Recognize the negative thought.
"Life is no fun when I'm on a diet."
"Time for my daily punishment (workout)"
"I'll never be fast/skinny. It's just not in my genetics."
"I have absolutely no willpower."
"I'm so slow."
"I look horrible in this outfit."
"I don't have time..."
"I can't... "
Step Three: Replace the negative with a positive. Analyze your initial thought and understand it in a more positive way that will assist you in reaching your goals. Here are some examples...
"I don't need food to have social life. My friends and activities will define my fun."
"When I finish my workout, I always feel energized and strong."
"My genetics are not my destiny. I know I can lose weight with healthier habits."
"I can better take care of my family/job/house when I first take care of myself"
"I am a work in progress. Every day will be a little bit better."
During this week's mini-challenge, dig deep into your self talk. Write down the negative thoughts that become your excuses... and then create positive counterpoints. Practice this mental exercise every day. This may not be easy, but it will help you think more objectively about yourself and your weight loss efforts.
Step Four: Be proactive with positive self talk. Begin the day with a plan... document what you plan to do today to achieve your goals. Tell yourself you can. It's like a daily pep rally in your honor. Grab your lipstick and write on the mirror, "I can do it!" Make yourself a little sign each day this week with something motivational to fight negative thoughts... hang it on the fridge, post it on your car steering wheel, tape it to your computer, stick it to your television's remote control. Repeat it to yourself all day long. By using positive self-talk, you can coach yourself to the result that you're dreaming of... one day at a time.
Weight loss and training are much easier if you believe you can do it. Many of us have self doubts about reaching our goals, and this is completely natural. By replacing our doubts with positive thoughts, we build self esteem and belief in ourselves. That belief can change your actions and carry you to your goals. Good Luck!