As I sit here after having updated the Testimonials page because we have too many success stories to share on the page in its current format, I can’t help but feel proud of being a part of so many amazing transformations.
Flexible eating has been a gift to me, and nothing makes me happier than sharing it with people and seeing them succeed. I believe in flexible eating. It’s a skill set you can fall back on when needed and can be easily adapted to your changing goals. Whether someone is tracking for a short period of time or forever, the tools learned on the program are invaluable. Food quality matters, I will never dispute this, but that does not erase the fact that food quantity matters.
Since taking my first nutrition client in the spring of 2015 I have learned a lot. Of course I wish I could go back in time and have a few do-overs. I will forever continue to learn and better myself as a coach. To this day I often lose sleep wondering if I could be helping someone better or connecting with them in a better way.
Truth is, change is hard. Not everyone will succeed. I have had some time to ponder what sets apart the success stories from the rest.
Counting macros isn’t perfect. It’s not the only way to succeed. But it works. I have come up with a couple of common traits of those who are ready to bring on results.
# 1 predictor of success:
“the quality or state of being accountable; especially: an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility” Webster’s Dictionary.
Being accountable for where you are currently. Being accountable for your commitment, action & outcome. Taking on the process as your own.
Own the process, own the outcome.
It is about more than me telling you what to do and you doing it.
The “just tell me what to do and I’ll do it” mentality shows me a lack of ownership. It basically says “I don’t want to think about any of this stuff for myself, I just want to change my body”. See where that could fail? Long term success requires ownership. Jason Seib, Body Beliefs.
I am honoured to be a part of your journey. But it is your journey. You need to want it and own it more than me.
Accept responsibility for your actions. Be accountable for your results. Take ownership of your mistakes.
Accountability and ownership. Once you have those two things going you need to open yourself up to the process. Be open to change. Which brings me to my #2.
#2 predictor of success:
Willingness to change.
You need to be willing to let go of some of your current habits and comfort in order to reach your goals.
We all have things we like to hold onto. Stories and habits we cling onto for comfort. And change, as we have already established, is hard.
Nothing brings on more emotions than our eating. It is tied to our culture, family, and emotional balance. Suggesting that you stop putting a quarter cup of oil on your salad feels like a betrayal to your Italian heritage, suggesting that you pack your lunch to work makes you feel like I just don’t understand how busy your life is. Suggesting that there are other ways to connect with friends than over happy hour makes you feel victimized.
The “what can I get away with” mentality is set to fail. It screams “My comfort is more important than my goals”. Instead of focusing on what you need to give up, focus on what you will gain through this process.
“Progress is impossible without change. Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.” George Bernard Shaw
Many will set goals that they won’t achieve. It is not a lack of desire that will make them fail, but more often it is what they are not willing to give up that will make them fail.
You want to run a marathon in 4 months? You may have to give up drinks on Saturday night, Sunday morning sleep-ins and brunch to make room for your long run.
You want to lose 10 lbs? You may need to give up the convenience of hitting the food truck with your co-workers at lunch.
You see the pattern.
We have choices. We have control over our own destiny. If you want something, you need to adopt new habits to make it happen. Continuing to do the same thing will give you the same results.
There is a distinction.
For myself, I promise to continue to own my part. Educate myself. Listen and be attentive to everyone, continue to look for more ways to connect with, educate and reach everyone in a meaningful way.
My plan was to wrap up this post here. I slept on it, but something just felt off. I just finished reading the book Body Beliefs by Jason Seib and I know that he was onto something. The perfect nutrition plan will not work if you are not ready for it. Mindset is everything. What ultimately shows me that someone is ready for this comes down to their “why”.
People with fat-loss goals tend to fall into 2 categories. The first group is the most common one; I was one of these for a long time and sometimes it still rears its ugly head. You know the one: you’ve got poor body image, you’re frustrated with yourself and extrinsically motivated. The truth is, although it sounds cheesy, that if you don’t love yourself now, you won’t love yourself when you’re 10-20 lbs thinner. If you are pursuing this goal to be loved and accepted by others you need to do some mental work before you can take this on. Your worth is not tied to a number on the scale.
The second group may still come to me for weight loss, but their motivations are different. They are honest about where they are at and have decided that they want more for themselves. Whether their goal is tied to health, performance, or energy, the goal is to be their best selves. Not because they hate themselves as it is, but because they are coming from a place of wanting to do what’s best for themselves.
With a perspective like this, you almost always get better results.
People like this are not glued to the scale and they are not looking for quick results, always jumping ship and trying diet after diet. They are here to make lasting changes to their lifestyle, and success will come their way.
Make sure you know your “why” & don’t lose sight of it. My goal is to have to continue making room on the site for more and more success stories like Patrick’s. Go check him out! I am so happy for him.
And if you think your mindset may be holding you back a great read to start you on your road back to putting it behind you is the book mentioned above,Body Beliefs by Jason Seib.