Change does not happen overnight. There is no quick fix or one size fits all approach to weight loss. It takes time and practice to replace old habits with new ones. Each step, forward or backward, is an opportunity to learn. Here are some strategies to help you make success a reality for you.
Set a Goal
It is important to set goals. The skill of goal setting is important because goals provide the foundation for building your plans, tracking your progress and rewarding your success. Goals give your efforts purpose and meaning.
When it comes to lifestyle change, many people set goals that are unrealistic. It's best to set goals that are challenging but not so difficult that you'll never achieve them. Small steps toward change add up to make a big difference! Setting goals that are unrealistic or too demanding will set you up for failure and disappointment. Avoid setting goals that use words:
It's very common to set goals that are too general or vague, such as "I'm going to eat more fruit." While this is a worthwhile goal, how will you know when you achieve it? What steps do you need to take to eat more fruit? The best goals are specific. A specific goal is measurable, includes a plan and has a timeline for completion. An example of a specific goal would be, "I will eat a piece of fruit with breakfast five days this week."
Long-term and Short-term Goals
It's important to keep your desired long-term results in mind, but it's much more important to focus on the short-term steps you need to be successful. Short-term goals keep you on track and move you toward your long-term goals. With each short-term success, you'll gain the confidence and encouragement you need to take the next step.
Plan for Barriers
Everyone faces barriers to achieving their goals such as travel, illness, bad weather, increased work responsibilities and more. The key to success is finding ways to overcome them. When setting a goal, plan ahead for those situations that may keep you from being successful. If you have difficulty achieving a goal, change your plans and modify your goal rather than abandoning it completely. It's important that your goals are flexible because your life may change.