Everybody's weight loss journey is different - some folks struggle with bad habits and go the yo-yo dieting route, others conquer their weight loss demons and manage to maintain weight loss permanently, while others lose weight only to get stuck at a plateau. Regardless of the path you take, you need to have one thing before you can reach your final weight loss destination (and your goal weight) - a clear idea of what your weight loss destination is. Once you know the "what" and your "why," the "how" becomes much easier.
As a weight loss coach and certified EFT practitioner, I have a lot of clients that come to me knowing that they want to lose weight but don't have a clear idea of what that means or why they want it.
In order to help clients get clear, I often ask the following questions:
1.What do you ultimately want? (I ask clients to get specific here. For example, lose 20 lbs. and get down to 12% body fat.)
2.What do you want to change about your body/health/fitness right now?
3.Why do you want to change it?
4.What's holding you back?
5.What are you committed to?
6.What are you excited about in your life right now?
7.What are you happy about right now?
By working through these questions, the client gets a clear picture of his/her specific goals as pertaining to weight and an idea of the roadblocks in the way. To get the bigger passion behind a person's desire to lose weight (no, squeezing into a certain size jean usually isn't the driving passion behind someone's desire to lose weight), I delve deeper into a person's values and beliefs. Here are some of the questions I ask:
1.What about health/fitness is important to me?
2.My weight is ________________________
3.My health is ________________________
4.Thin people are _____________________
5.Fit people are _______________________
6.I am _______________________________
Once my client is clear on the why, I begin to work on the how. To get them on the right track to success, I follow this 4-step process:
1. First, I help them clearly identify what they want and the bigger passion behind it, which is what I explained above. For example, I had a client come to me saying that she desperately wanted to lose weight. After asking her what that meant, we discovered that she wanted to lose 35 pounds and get down to 15% body fat, with her bigger reason being that she wanted to have enough energy to play with her young children and to be healthy and feel comfortable in her body.
2. Determine the big things that need to be done in order to make it happen. For this very same client, we learned that she needed to eat smaller portions of health food and establish an exercise regime.
3. Break down the big things into bite-sized action steps. My client realized that she had to: deal with her cravings for sweets, cut her portion sizes in half, determine which exercises would suit her, stop her constant snacking, and schedule exercise time each day.
4. Take action. I gave this client homework to complete before our next session. She had to research different exercises that she could do at home, she had to get her doctor's permission to start an exercise plan, and she had to do some research on nutrition and appropriate portion sizes.
Weight loss is much easier to achieve when there is clarity around why one wants to lose the weight. Couple the why with a sound action plan, and weight loss success becomes much easier to attain. There's the hard road to weight loss, and there's an easy road. Getting clear will lead you down the easy road.