So you’ve decided that enough is enough, huh?
You’re tired of feeling sluggish, bloated, and flat out uncomfortable in your skin?
Now you’ve committed to a resolution or goal and you’re realizing it’s a bit harder than what you originally imagined, so what do you do?
No matter who says it or how you phrase it, it comes down to two choices:
I really want to get to the part where I get you some help, but I need to make two things
very clear to you first.
The first is that if you’re deciding to quit on this goal or resolution already that you’re just becoming another number to the statistic that makes resolutions sound like a dumb idea.
New Year’s Resolutions have become somewhat of a public joke because the statistics are EVERYWHERE about how many people quit their resolutions before the end of January. I listened to the radio DJ poke fun at people who already quit, clients awkwardly laugh at their slip ups, and family and friends mock how much money I’ll make from the people who join and never come*.
Be a number.
Be a part of the statistics.
But commit to being a part of the numbers or statistics who succeed.
*For the record, I am far from THAT coach. Accountability is one of my biggest priorities, so if you’re not here, you can expect to hear from me 😉
The second is that if you’re deciding to quit because it’s “too hard” or “too much right now” then you are the exact person who needs to see this through and continue reading.
Whether your goal is fat loss or to read more books this year, you’re uncomfortable right now.
And do you know what?
THAT IS NORMAL.
You’re supposed to be uncomfortable at this point!
You’re changing your norm, your day-to-day routine, and your life!
EXPECT to be uncomfortable!
Because if you’re not, that means you set a goal that wasn’t challenging enough for yourself.
But if you’re reading this still saying “It’s just too much” then let’s play a quick game of
Would You Rather.
Would you rather be uncomfortable for a short period of time or long-term?
Would you rather suffer a little now or a lot later?
Would you rather make small, simple health changes now or make radical, drastic changes later?
Would you rather live a long, healthy life with the people you love or a shorter, more disease-ridden life with nurses, doctors, and therapists?
Would you rather take the advice I’m about to give you or just give up and give it a go in 2021?
The point is that yes, you’re uncomfortable right now but if you stick with it, it will turn to comfort and become your new norm. If you quit and go back to your old habits, you’re going to continue to feel sluggish, bloated, and uncomfortable in your skin for as long as
you continue to resist the change.
The choice is yours but I’m ready for change, so here are 5 tips for effortlessly building habits.
There are three types of accountability, and EVERY goal or resolution needs all three, especially fat loss.
#1 Personal Accountability
We live in an on-demand society now, wherein a lot of things just seem to happen. Fat loss is NOT one of those things.
Now my livelihood is based upon accountability, but here’s the thing, no matter how great of a program I put together or bug you to follow the program, results are not possible without some degree of personal accountability.
Do you know the saying “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink?”
I’m the lead, you’re the horse.
I can’t spoon feed clients or swat candy bars out of their hands every day. (And no, this is not a ‘Name Your Price’ scenario)
It’s up to you to implement the program provided to you. If the action steps are too hard, tell your coach and ask to have them broken down into simpler, more applicable steps. Ask for tips and tricks for reminders and personal accountability. As a coach, I provide ALL my clients my personal strategies for how I keep myself accountable and they either apply what’s worked for me or modify to build new strategies for themselves.
#2 Coach Accountability
Coaches don’t (or at least they shouldn’t) write programs and bounce. There’s check ins, discussions, and modifications.
All of my online clients get a form with assessment questions to gather feedback from each week. They each have spreadsheets and forms with their programs for notes or questions and get a check in email or text mid-week for recommendations or motivation.
I’ve been in their shoes, so I know how hard it is to get started. It’s my job to give them that little boost or motivation to keep them on program.
The biggest key to coach accountability is communication. I tell all of my clients to ask questions, make suggestions, and share concerns or worries because without sufficient communication, I cannot hold them accountable to their goals to the best of my ability.
#3 Peer Accountability
For whatever reason our individualistic culture believes goals and change should be pursued alone.
Change, especially in the pursuit of fat loss, is LONELY and HARD.
Friends, family, and coworkers are GREAT for accountability.
Think about when grandma asks where your significant other is and you have to sheepishly tell her that you’re no longer together.
It works the same for fat loss.
You tell others your goal and plan of action, they’ll ask you about it later. Now you thought it was bad to tell grandma about your S.O., imagine telling everyone you decided to gain the weight back.
I’m not saying you need to post it all over social media or make a public announcement at the next family gathering. I’m telling you to not be afraid to tell others because they have the potential to make or break your journey.
Place Bets or Consequences
If the fear of letting others down doesn’t get your rear in gear, the fear of losing money or facing a consequence might do the trick.
I don’t know about you, but I HATE losing money. I’ll do just about whatever it takes to keep money in my pockets (Okay, okay I know mom, I never have cash so does keep money in the bank work?).
Maybe there’s something you REALLY just dread doing. Would you do whatever it takes
NOT to have to do that?
I bet those habits STICK if you put money or your least favorite house chore on the line.
There are actually sites where you can place bets on yourself specifically for weight loss.
There are two ways to go about this:
#1 You bet money on yourself. If you succeed, you get your money back. If you fail, your money is either lost or donated to a cause of your choice.
#2 You join a social or community challenge with friends where money is put into a pot. Winners, split the pot. Losers our out of their money.
Here are two legit sites recommended for bets and wagers:
- Diet Bet – With this site you’re able to create your own or join a community weight-loss betting game or challenge. You’re able to bet as low as $10 and up to $100, which makes participation very affordable. Games are typically structured in one of two ways 1) lose 4% of your bodyweight in four weeks or 2) lose 10% of your body weight in six months.
- Healthy Wage – This site operates on a similar premise, but you’re only able to bet and play by yourself; however, Healthy Wage will reward you for reaching your goal. The more money you bet on yourself, the higher the payout if you’re successful.
If you’re strapped for cash, then offer up some consequences for missing your goal.
Set up a habit tracker wherein you pre-plan the frequency at which you’re going to perform the habit you’re looking to solidify. Check off a day each time you successfully complete the habit, but set a consequence for yourself when you skip.
Here are some great recommendations for consequences:
- Double the habit the next day
- An extra set or 5 minutes in your workouts
- Doing your least favorite chore (vacuum, dishes, laundry, cleaning the bathroom)
- Follow the Never 2 Rule (Keep reading!)
Habits are not built in a day.
Habits are also not broken in one day.
Yet so many of us beat ourselves up about one day.
One day doesn’t make or break you.
The bigger concern is two days because two days can easily turn into a week, which turns to a month and then longer.
Commit to the Never 2 Rule.
So what’s the rule?
It’s actually pretty simple.
That rule states that you’ll never go two days without the habit you are working to build.
That means you don’t miss two workouts in a row, no two cheat meals in a row, or no two days short on water.
Yes, each individual day matters during the process of habit formation, but habits are built on consistent action and consistency means not letting one day turn into two.
Pick Something You Actually WANT
Take a moment to look at the goals and related habits you’ve set for yourself.
Do you actually want to do them?
Is it something you’ll look back and feel great about your accomplishments?
Is it something you’ll enjoy?
If the answer to ANY of those is NO, then stop now and find something new.
Yes, I mean it.
If there’s a part of you that doesn’t really want or enjoy the habits you’re trying to set in place, that will either consciously or subconsciously prevent you from setting them in as habits.
If you’re serious about breaking your old behavior patterns and creating behavior change, you need to actually enjoy and want to do what you’ve set out for.
It might be a little discouraging or frustrating to have put in the work to start habit formation and just give up, so here’s what I have to say – I GET IT.
It’s okay to realize that this isn’t for you or something you truly want.
Better now than getting to the finish line and not being excited to celebrate!
Now, there is a difference between wanting to quit because it’s not what you want and wanting to quit because you’re uncomfortable. In order to be sure you’re doing things for the right reasons, ask yourself these questions:
- #1 WHY do I want to do this?
- #2 WHAT is the significance of this goal or habit to you? Or what do you accomplish by doing it?
- #3 Imagine yourself at the end, HOW do you feel about your accomplishments?
- #4 What are you biggest OBSTACLES and how will you navigate?
I recommend all my clients ask themselves those questions even if they KNOW this is the goal for them. It helps to see beyond the present moment. It encourages a bigger picture focus. It creates recognition and understanding of the purpose and reasoning behind your goal which in turn improves adherence and ability to overcome dislikes and obstacles.
Use Habit Bundling
A great way to set in one habit is to pair it with another habit you’re hoping to build.
Maybe there are two things you’re looking to incorporate or accomplish this year.
Maybe there’s something you’re excited to start and another you’re hoping to stop doing.
A powerful change can take place through something called habit bundling.
Let’s say you’re hoping to read more books and get more active. Set yourself up with an
Audible account and listen to a book during your workouts.
Maybe your goal is to cut back on your social media time and keep your house cleaner
and more organized. Set aside a time each day to clean up the house or workplace.
Once you’re done, allow yourself 15 minutes of social media time.
Habits don’t NEED to be a difficult thing to incorporate, you just need to find the right tricks to simplify the habit formation process.
About The Author
Jordan Davies is the Co-Owner of Complete Performance. Jordan has her B.S. in Exercise Science and Psychology, and her M.A. in Holistic Health Studies. She is a CSCS certified strength and conditioning coach, and a PN-1 and NCI-1 certified nutrition coach. She loves to study how the human body needs to be moved and nourished and making that fit to your unique lifestyle. Click Here Now to Apply for Coaching with Jordan.