Wednesday, November 28, 2012

80/20 Approach

“I just ate a cookie, I’ve TOTALLY blown it!”

“Either I’m completely on my diet or I’m completely off my diet.”

"I can't eat that. It's not on my diet."

The holidays are here and I have officially heard all of the above statements more than once. These statements are examples of All-or-Nothing Thinking. In All-or-Nothing Thinking everything is considered good or bad, black or white. There are no shades of grey or middle ground. This type of thinking will undermine your health and weight loss efforts by leading you to give up when you stray from your plan.

So what’s the alternative? Ease your mind and try the 80/20 approach.

In the 80/20 approach you make healthy choices 80% of the time. The other 20% of the time allows for intentional treats and missed exercise bouts and makes provisions for unintended splurges.

Remember, perfection is NOT the goal: It’s ultimately about good health. And, if you are trying to lose weight, it’s about healthy weight loss.

So what kind of mind set do you need to make the 80/20 approach work?
1.     Let go of the idea that perfection is necessary or even possible.
2.     Give yourself permission to indulge once in a while.
3.     Get back to making healthy choices as soon as possible so the 80/20 approach doesn’t become the 20/80 approach!
4.    Stubbornly refuse to indulge in the type of negative self-talk that leads to feelings of guilt.

Give it a try; it's simpler than most of the 'diets' out there and I promise, it will make your holiday eating far less stressful. Too many people get anxious about the food served instead of focusing on the real treats, friends and family.

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