Every Pritikin guest has different challenges to master in order to achieve their weight, fitness, and health goals. What are your challenges? I ask every guest I coach this question during our first session. Whether the answer, is “making good choices in restaurants” or “exercising when I hate it”, the prescription for progress is the same.
Identify the self-talk that makes your challenge a losing battle.
For example, you eat out often and have been doing great until the other evening when you saw the person at the next table enjoying a steak and pomme frites. The fish and baked potato you planned on ordering suddenly seemed unappealing, and before you knew it, you were pointing to the filet, and saying” I’ll have one of those”.
Your self-talk makes this happen. Perhaps your thoughts went something like this: “I’ve been good for months. Why can he eat that and I can’t? He’s slim, and looks healthy. No one else eats like me. The heck with it. I’m sick of these rules. I deserve to eat what I want; it’s been a rough week”.
Change your self-talk to make a Pritikin choice a “winning choice”.
Many people have thoughts like, “why me”? Examples include why can’t I eat just like everyone else; why can’t I relax after work instead of going to the gym; why does she eat what she wants and stay slim when I have to work at it..
These are automatic thoughts; they’re top of the mind and arise easily whether you’re stressed or celebrating! The challenge is to “catch those thoughts” and translate them into “choice” statements that help move you toward your goals. Remember that when you talk to yourself, YOU LISTEN, so be careful what you say.
Here are some winning revisions of these “why me” thoughts:
|Why can’t I eat like everyone else?||I can, but I choose not to because I don’t want to have high cholesterol and high blood pressure. He doesn’t know how bad salt and fat are for him!|
|Why can’t I just relax after work instead of going to the gym?||Exercise does relax me. I may not always look forward to it, but I feel better after, have more energy, and my jeans fit a lot better now than they did 6 months ago.|
This week, build in a pause before any challenge, and remember how great you feel when you’re making winning choices. Put that feeling into words and make it a mantra that you “chant” to yourself whenever you need encouragement. Remember that your thoughts determine your actions, so mind your mind!
Susan E. Grober., Ph.D.