I want to give you a special inside view into a recent conversation with a Body Shapers member…
Because what I shared with her is the key to beating vicious, yo-yo cycles with your body & eating.
Her name is Anne and she started with us a few weeks ago because she’d been putting off getting her fitness back for too long.
She also wanted to tone up and drop about 8kg’s.
We had a chat after an awesome workout about how her week went nutrition wise and it went a little something like this:
ANNE: ‘I started the week perfectly, then it all fell apart from Friday arvo and the weekend…’
ME: ‘I understand, it happens. So what are you going to do THIS week then?’
ANNE: ‘ I know I can do better, so this week I’ll stick to it all week for sure’
Now, this may seem harmless and pretty normal….
Just a coach doing their job of getting the member back on track after struggling a bit.
BUT, I guarantee you if I just left that there, Anne’s cycle of good eating during the week then stuffing up later in the week would’ve continued.
You only notice this stuff when you coach 100’s of women over many years, so you see the patterns.
So here’s where we went with it instead:
ME: ‘I see, I do like your enthusiasm. Tell me though Anne, have you ever said before that this week will be good ALL week and then it hasn’t been?’
‘Where you went in with these fantastic intentions but then it fell apart?’
ANNE: ‘Well… yeah’
ME: ‘Quite a few times?’
ANNE: ‘Haha, yeah definitely more than a few times’
ME: ‘So are you open to a different way of looking at it to avoid that happening again?’
ANNE: ‘Of course’
ME: ‘There’s one perspective shift that will turn this all around if you really stop and take it on board.’
ANNE: ‘Well, well what is it then?!’?’
ME: ‘A little better’
ANNE: ‘Okay… explain’
ME: ‘Instead of aiming for perfection this week, make your focus on just being a little better than what you are currently doing’
‘Don’t get caught up if you aren’t doing EVERYTHING right, just look to improve on last week a tiny bit.’
ANNE: ‘Right, so… uh, what would that look like?’
ME: ‘When you ‘stuff up’ on your eating and go into ‘I don’t give a f*** mode, what typically happens?’
ANNE: ‘Well I end up raiding the pantry for all the sweet goodies and end up snacking all day instead of eating my proper healthy meals with veggies + protein etc’
ME: ‘Cool, so let’s decide on ONE little step then that would be a tiny bit better but you feel confident in doing’
‘You mention when you stuff up the eating you don’t end up eating your healthy meals…’
‘So how’s this sound: Your little bit better target for the week is to simply get your 5 serves of veggies in the entire week‘
ANNE: ‘That’s it??’
ME: ‘Yep, that is it. How confident out of 10 do you feel with doing that if you focus on it?’
ANNE: ‘Probably 9/10 if that’s my main focus yeah.’
ME: ‘Awesome, that’s it. If you do that all week you have succeeded for the week.’
‘You have ‘won’ the week’
‘Then next time we chat we could look at the next step’
ANNE: ‘Okay, deal. I’ll make it happen’
Anne then walked her sweaty post workout self out the door with confidence and relief.
There is a lot happening in this conversation, but the most important principle is to understand the ‘a little better’ mindset.
See, nutrition and your body are not black and white.
You are not either ‘Good’ or ‘bad’ or ‘on’ the diet or ‘off’ the diet.
It is a larger continuum of slightly better habits and slightly worse habits.
But when you only go between the 2 extreme modes, you put way too much pressure on yourself.
Often trying to make too many changes at once.
Then when you can’t quite maintain it all, you feel like a failure.
You feel like you aren’t doing well at this…
Which begins to build an identity for yourself of ‘I struggle to stay consistent with my healthy eating’
Then the cycle repeats as you try to go back to perfect mode.
And if you keep re-enforcing the identity of ‘I struggle to stay consistent with my healthy eating’ then that person is NOT going to stick to any plan.
So your solution is to take a step back, and aim for ‘a little better’.
Get some perspective or everything you are doing, then ask ‘What would be just a little better than this?’
Then pick a single thing to work on. Commit to that as your focus and do it.
An important point from my chat with Anne is that we picked an inclusive step, not an exclusive.
An inclusive step means things we are including, in this case, more veggies.
Exclusive steps are when you don’t include something.
So we could’ve said ‘don’t go raid the pantry at all and avoid those foods’
BUT, inclusive steps generally trump exclusive.
Firstly, when you include more good stuff, there’s less room for bad stuff naturally.
Secondly, when you tell someone they can’t have something, guess what happens?
They want it!
Then when they get a chance to have it, they typically go overboard.
So, inclusive generally trumps exclusive, at least initially.
So before you start again going for perfect… ask yourself ‘what would a little better look like?’
Then every week build on that.
You’ll be amazed at the body and lifestyle you’ve built before you know it.
David – The Body Shapers
PS: If you need help with that ‘next step’ then click below for our 28-Day body kick start transformation program where we help women get remotivated to build their dream body, health, and fitness.