all-or-nothing mindset

After weight-loss surgery, I found I had to work on mindset changes—and one of them included dealing with my "all-or-nothing" mentality. We have all experienced it. It's called "yo-yo" dieting. We starve ourselves in order to lose weight. Then we feel deprived and we "go off our diet". We eat dessert or French fries. Then we feel guilty and announce defeat. We miss a day or two of exercise, we feel like a failure, we give up, and we throw in the towel.Let's face it, we're not perfect. There will always be times when we give in to temptation. There are somethings I can't change, but I can change myself. After surgery, I found it best to re-focus. A little flexibility keeps thing running smoothly. Things that bend, don't break as easily! I began to establish a flexible plan, which included concentrating on healthy diet and activity throughout my week, with an occasional treat and an occasional rest from time to time. Ideally, I'd like to schedule myself a run 3 times each week but as we all know, life is not ideal so sometimes I can only commit to one, and on rare occasions I may get in four. If I happen to miss a week from time to time, I don't stress over it, I just keep going. When I feel I need a change from the routine, I go to a Zumba class.

I must also commit to walking or other calorie-burning activities during the week. Recently, I have gotten a little slack, but I'm not throwing in the towel. I realize my need to get back with the program, make a commitment, pick up where I left off, and get back with the plan. Success is about consistency over the long-haul. When I take an occasional bite or two of dessert, I plan for it. "When" I eat dessert, and "how much" (or "how little") I eat is intentional. Therefore it's a scheduled part of my plan—no guilt, no worries, no feeling deprived, no giving up. Jillian Michaels says it this way, “Part of abandoning the all-or-nothing mentality is allowing yourself room for setbacks. We are bound to have lapses on the road to health and wellness, but it is critical that we learn how to handle small failures positively so that we can minimize their long-term destructive effects. One setback is one setback—it is not the end of the world, nor is it the end of your journey toward a better you."

Let's "let go" of the all-or-nothing mindset and get back to balance. Let's make a workable and flexible plan, and focus on long-term success—not on short-term mishaps. Yes, we can. We have many more miles to go!