First, there are lots of holiday events and food temptations. Add to that the stress of travel, baking and buying gifts.
In spite of this, you may have renewed your commitment to being successful. But then you slip up, and suddenly you feel frustrated and hopeless.
Now what? Do you search for a new program or a different diet book? Or just quit and go back to your old patterns? But if you quit now, will it be easier at a later time, such as a year from now? And you know that once you stop a weight-loss plan, it’s really hard to restart or come back to it.
Weight-loss success comes from sticking with it and not giving up, even after starting over many times. So instead of quitting, look for ways to re-boot your efforts and keep at it.
The magic attempt
When people decide to stop smoking, on average, it takes quitting ten times before they become a non-smoker. Since that’s the average, it means some people are successful after one try while for others, it may take twenty tries. But here’s the secret. Smokers never know which attempt is the magic one that makes them successful with quitting.
In the same way, you don’t know which of your weight-loss attempts will be the one that sticks. So even if you’ve lost weight many times in the past, your successful attempt might be right around the corner.
The value of repetition
When you don’t use a particular area of your brain, it atrophies. To revive it and make it work effectively again involves repetition. So to stay on your program, you need to follow a behavior pattern consistently, day after day.
Even though research says it takes 21 days to build a habit, you can create new brain patterns a lot faster than that. All it takes is doing the behavior for three days in a row. By the third day, repetition will start to change your brain responses and will make the behaviors stick.
Even during times when you struggle, never give up! Just do healthy behaviors for three days, and you’ll be back on track.