No Weight Loss Willpower? Start Setting Small Goals

Breaking down obstacles into small goals makes achieving them easier. Setting small goals helps you lose weight and keep it off.

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Dipped your hand in the candy bowl? Ordered a double scoop instead of a single? Think it’s because you’ve go no will power? Think again.

Big goals — say, losing 50 pounds — are much more easily accomplished by breaking them down into many smaller goals. Setting and achieving daily and weekly goals builds your self confidence and helps you stay focused. Done in small steps, big goals don’t seem so intimidating, and willpower (or lack thereof) doesn’t seem so daunting.

So, for example, instead of starting your diet by swearing off all carbs and exercising an hour a day, you might start by eliminating simple carbs (white carbs, candy, cake) and doing 10-20 minutes of exercise a day. After a couple of weeks, once you’ve achieved those goals, you might set two more small goals such as switching from diet soda to water and increasing your exercise to 20-30 minutes a day. Once those goals are achieved, you’ll feel successful and more motivated to keep going.

So, it’s set small goal. Accomplish goal. Feel good. Repeat.

Willpower’s got nothing on you.

Photo credit: FCC, Jan Tik

5 Ways to Fend Off Cravings

5 ways to fend off food cravings.

Everyone, including your spinning instructor, succumbs to cravings, even if she won’t admit it.

Here are five ways to fend off food cravings:

1.  Procrastinate: You know you’re good at this. Tell yourself you’ll eat it later and do something else. Most times, you won’t get back to it.

2. Toss it: The peanut M&Ms you hid behind the Kashi cereal in your pantry are calling you. Throw them away, and take the trash out. Then see #3.

3. Get moving: When a craving grips you, walk your dog, turn on your Wii Just Dance, or tackle that mountain of clutter on your desk. You’ll feel self-righteous, which is a powerful antidote to food cravings.

4. Drink up: Mild dehydration can cause feelings of hunger. Drink a tall glass of cool water, wait 10 minutes, and see if that craving doesn’t go away

5. Change your habits: Cravings are often psychological. So remove food triggers. Associate Jay Leno with a nightly bowl of ice cream? Change up your routine to break the pattern.

How about you? Got strategies that work? Share them with us below.

Photo credit: FCC, christopher frier brown