Written by: Chris McMahon
If it didn’t work, why are you still trying it?
I saw a post from Andrew Coates yesterday that asked the question:
“If it worked so well, why did you stop following your preferred diet?”
A lot of diets might seem appealing based on what social media tells you or results that a friend or co-worker experienced, but here are some things to consider:
🤷 Your life is different from their life
🤷 Your results will be different from their results
😳 Your ability to adhere to “rules” will diminish over time.
It is hard to find long-term success when you are told to lose weight by eating 1,200 calories a day, eliminating entire food groups, or marking food with a point system.
It leads to all or nothing thinking and the belief that you can sustain restriction long term.
Pursue The Wise Five
What Should I Do?
Author and Coach Josh Hillis talks about the power of the wise five while pursuing things outside of your comfort zone in his book, Lean and Strong.
Values – Base your nutrition practice around your values.
Skills– Practice and get better at your eating skills
Connection– Listen to people, set healthy boundaries, be appropriately vulnerable, care about people.
Accept Thoughts and Feelings – Accept that it’s normal to have unwanted thoughts and uncomfortable feelings about food and your body. Don’t numb your feelings with food. Feel the feelings.
This can feel a little abstract if we don’t look at the Failure Five too:
Reward and Punishment – Trying to control motivation
Self-esteem – Try to control how I feel about myself
Status – Try to control other people liking me
Suppressing Unwanted Thoughts and Feelings – Try to control thoughts and feelings
Force “Motivated” Thoughts and Feelings – Try to control motivation
👆 This one sound a little familiar? 😉
If you feel like you hang around with the Failure Five a little too often, you’re not alone. When this happens, I suggest starting to ask yourself better questions.
When you stay curious and question, you will get better answers to bring you closer to the Wise Five.
👉 What were the significant obstacles last time?
👉 What will this dietary change look like long term?
👉 What result am I hoping for and why?
Just my two cents but, restrictive practices aren’t your friend. Working on habits and practicing obstacle planning can completely transform your relationship with food and your ability to make a change.
My number 1 tip is to remember that you are a human and not a robot. So stay curious and see what comes up for you.