If you’re on a fat loss diet plan, one thing that you need to be considering is how to gain enough self-control that you’re able to stick with the plan and see the success that you’re after. Many people have no problem getting a plan in place, it’s keeping that plan up that proves to be the challenge.
Temptation seems to lurk around every corner and if your self-control isn’t what it should be, there’s no question that you’re going to be in for a few challenges ahead.
So what can you do to ensure that you do maintain the self-control that you desire? How can you boost your chances of success on your diet and then ensure that you go on to maintain your weight loss over the long haul?
Let’s have a look at a few quick strategies that you can use to develop greater self-control.
The very first thing that you can do to help yourself develop better overall self-control is to utilize visualizations regularly. A visualization is going to help to give you the self-confidence that you can carry out your objective in the face of obstacles.
What you’re going to do for this process is find somewhere quiet to sit or lay down where you won’t be distracted or interrupted. Then, you’re going to imagine yourself facing some sort of obstacle. Perhaps it’s a co-worker offering you a slice of cake from the staff birthday party or maybe it’s dinner out with your friends on Friday night.
Use whatever scenario you believe you’re most likely to falter with. Then what you’ll do is enact this scene in your mind, only when doing so, visualize yourself coming through it successfully.
See yourself saying no to whatever food is offered and sticking with your healthy eating plan.
As you do this, note how you feel. Chances are you’ll get a feeling of empowerment and being proud that you are in so much control. Remember this feeling because that is the feeling that you’ll want to bring to mind when a real life challenge presents itself.
Try and do these visualizations at least once a week, changing the ‘scene’ each time so that you have a wide number of difficult times covered.
Repeating Your Goals Daily
Another thing that you can do to enhance your level of self-control is to repeat the goals that you have set for yourself daily. Often times when faced with an obstacle, one of the primary reasons why we abandon our best interests is simply because we don’t have our primary goals in mind. We’re distracted by the food that’s sitting there and the last thing we’re thinking about is how good it will feel to fit into our skinny jeans.
To avoid this happening, it’s important that you drill those goals right into your mind. Review them daily, if possible.
Make a list of all the goals that you want to achieve by using your diet plan and then read over them every morning and every night. After doing this enough times, those goals will become a part of who you are and you’ll have a much better ability to maintain them in your mind when trouble comes near.
Remember that your goals may change over time as well, so make sure to update your list as they do.
Allowing For Cheats Once In A While
The next thing that you can do to help yourself maintain better self-control as you go about the dieting process is to make room for cheat meals every so often. One of the worst things that you can do as you go about your diet is completely ban certain foods off your list of what you’re allowed to eat.
As soon as you make a food entirely ‘off limits’, that’s when your mind will fixate on it. It’ll be all you can think of to the point where you really may become quite obsessed about getting it.
By removing your ‘off limits’ list entirely and instead making it a ‘less frequently’ list, you do a powerful thing to the mind. You tell it that it can have this food every so often. Your obsessions will stop and your self-control will be greater. Now it’s not that you’ll never have it, you just have to wait so long before you can have it.
The odd cheat here and there is really not going to be too detrimental to your progress as long as you make sure that you stick with your diet the rest of the time.
Follow the 90/10% rule. This rule states that 90% of the time you should be aiming to eat foods that are entirely healthy for you and 10% of the time you can have ‘fun’ foods added to your diet.
Checking Your Diet For Issues
Finally, the last key component for making sure that you maintain some level of dietary control is checking to see if your diet may have certain ‘issues’ that you need to attend to. For example, is it providing you enough calories total?
If you’re bringing your calorie intake just a little too low, that diet is going to be hard to stick to regardless of what you do, so this can put a dent in your self-control.
Likewise, if you aren’t getting enough of certain nutrients – namely carbs as is often the case, that too can weaken your self-control.
Balance is key in any diet plan that you’re on and it’s important that you assess whether you are achieving this or not. If you aren’t, some changes may need to be put in place in order to improve your level of self-control and make it easier to stick with.
So make sure that you keep these ideas in mind if you’re struggling. Dieting is never going to be entirely easy or everyone would succeed at it, but with the right planning and strategies in place, you can definitely boost your chances of success.
[stextbox id=”grey” caption=”About the Author”] Shannon Clark holds a degree in Exercise Science from the University of Alberta, where she specialized in Sports Performance and Psychology. In addition to her degree, she is an AFLCA certified personal trainer and has been working in the field for over 8 years now.[/stextbox]