Losing weight is sometimes too distant a goal

Sometimes it's all about the detail and not about the Big Picture. The Big Picture might be I must lose some weight. In keeping with the new management speak, we might make that a measurable goal I must lose 20 pounds by Christmas. We might enrol on an exciting motivational seminar and get ourselves worked up to being the best we can be.

But when we get home, what exactly are we going to do to achieve this goal? There is so much conflicting information about the How, even when you are sure about the What. And that gets in the way of starting.

But when you do start, if the magic doesn't work quickly, all this conflicting information can make you think that you have chosen the wrong technique. So maybe you should try another. And when that doesn't work, well, clearly you are doing something wrong, so time to try something else. And at the target date (Christmas) when you are still the same weight, or more likely, somewhat heavier, well clearly there is something wrong with you. You made a promise to yourself and you have broken it. This undermines your self-esteem. But maybe it is information overload and too much Big Picture and not your fault at all.

So what can we do to change things?

Some of my clients are putting on weight because they are eating out so much. So their goal might be Eat at Home More. That seems to be a nice clear goal. So you get home, and look in the fridge. Empty. Well, lots of food, but nothing to make a meal. One client worried about the amount of cheese and chocolate he was eating. But a discussion about the contents of the fridge and cupboards showed that he had no choice. The stuff in the house didn't work as ingredients for a meal. But in any case, what meal? How was he supposed to cook an unspecified meal at 8.30pm when the cupboards were,  to all intents and purposes, bare?

So we have to go back one step. If you want to eat at home more, then you need to have done the menu planning and the shopping. After work when you are tired and hungry is not the time to look through cookery books, choose a nice recipe, prepare a shopping list, set off and shop, and then come back and cook. Who wants to do that?

So, planning in advance might be the stage to concentrate on. And this might be a job for the weekend, when you are relaxed and have time. What do you fancy cooking next week? What recipes do you know already? What would be worth experimenting with over the weekend, to warm up during the week?

So, if your Big Picture is to manage your weight more effectively, then what can you to today or this week to bring that long-term goal closer, so you can take action today or this week? What is the one step back element that you can focus on now? Let me know, let's share it.

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