Are you struggling with willpower, keeping your commitment to your weight loss plan, or just keeping promises to yourself? Then we need to talk.
I have an issue with promises. I don’t make them often, and I don’t break them. As a kid growing up there were lots of times people would say something with an “I promise” attached, but the promise would fall through. It wasn’t done on purpose, no one was trying to break their word, things just happened. But it developed in me a distrust of the words “I promise”. As I grew into adulthood I decided I would never promise anything unless I knew I could keep it. If my kids asked to go somewhere I would say we’ll try, or we’ll see, or I’ll do my best, but rarely I promise. My kids have learned that if I say I promise then it’s the real deal, it will happen, baring natural disaster of course. (One time I made a promise we would go on vacation to Colorado. I booked a cabin, made all the arrangements, and then the wildfires went through and burned down the cabin and literally closed Colorado, successfully canceling our vacation. My kids have never let me live it down, it was one promise that I broke!)
So why am I talking about promises? How does this relate to weight loss and health?
Every day I wake up and I have a decision to make healthy choices and eat certain foods. Every day I also have the choice to not make healthy decisions. If I try to live on my willpower alone, I fail. If I try to think about the long term or the big end goal, I fail. If I try to look past even just a few days, I fail. And that’s why I’ve never made a promise to myself about anything long term in regard to my eating.
However I can keep a one day promise of eating. I can promise myself that for today only I will eat what I’ve packed or planned. I’m not going to lie, it’s still tough. But when I make the promise, that for today I will do this, I can make it through. (This is different from meal planning and prepping).
If you struggle with keeping your promises, I suggest you start with small promises first. Start with one meal, one bite, or one step. Once you start keeping promises to yourself you begin to build up trust. You can trust your body and mind to work together. You can trust that if you say you’re going to do it, you will. Learning to keep your promise is a bigger deal than people think, I promise.