It started so well!
Now those January Blues are here!
January started so well, the new year and all that is a perfect time to start a new healthy eating plan, to be fitter and exercise and it all started so well, but why do so many of us fail on these great intensions, less than half of us will keep to these resolutions and by March they will be a distant memory for most. WHY?
Why is it that we start these new regimes but so many of us really struggle to maintain them, it’s not like we don’t really know what’s good and bad for us? Fair enough there is an awful lot of information out there and it can be confusing at times; eat fats get thin, have a fat free diet, low carb, high carb, sugar free substitutes or natural sugars, it is fair to see why we can be conflicted in what is really good for us. But we do not need to know the science of food and nutrition to know that a nice fresh meal of fruits and veggies, eggs or tasty fish or meat is far better than a cup of tea and buttery white toast! If I am honest the Ben and Jerry’s left over from Christmas is also calling me and I know for sure that will not be helping to achieve my new year goals of reducing the waistline any time soon! But then that thought creeps in “go on eat the Ben and Jerry’s and just miss diner”.
To answer this why question we need to say hello to our Mind Monkeys!. In the past I have referred to this as the ‘crazy brain’ but whilst doing a little bit of research I cam upon the psychological metaphor from Buddha who says that the mind is full of drunken monkeys, all clamoring around, causing havoc and confusion in our mind and this is a perfect metaphor we use to explain some of the thoughts and behaviours we tend to exhibit, some of the feelings we have or decisions we make especially regarding our health and wellness, these little monkeys can take all your common sense and literally throw it out of the window! I love this image from Bart Schroeven at cocoonOfLight.com! He writes a lovely article on taming these pesky little monkeys here.
But how do these mind monkeys get hold of you and screw up your attempts to reach those new year goals?
Think about your life’s experiences, can you pinpoint any time that you have been influenced into making decisions for your health and wellness? Maybe you can’t but if I said to you to look out today you will find those influences everywhere! And they are not always influences that have your best interests at mind but ones that your mind monkeys will use against you and they are everywhere!
Take the TV advert, especially the ones in January, there is a women, she is smiling, she is slim and looks beautiful in every way, she laughs whilst eating a bar of what could only be described as a chunk of sawdust but she looks like she is enjoying it, she is happy, her body language is open and suggests that she is confident in her skin. Despite the fact that you have probably had that sawdust like bar before and know you will not enjoy it your little monkey of the mind, will convince you that if you want the confidence that she had, if you want to look like that, lose weight, be happy like she is then don’t pick up the apple pick up that bar, the one with a list of ingredients you can not pronounce, that you have no idea what they do in your body but it must be a good option.
Or what about the Facebook adverts, they are everywhere and don’t get me wrong some of them are inspiring, amazing and completely true! I should know there are amazing photos of our ladies and gents who have made changes and had great successes from the #FitERin6 programme, our health club and bootcamps so some are real don’t get me wrong. BUT some are not real, we flick over them and whilst we really know they are not real, our common sense looks at the image and the headline and knows that its all just fake BUT those little mind monkeys get to work and before you know it you have just spent £70 on a bottle of diet pills guaranteed to make you lose half your body weight in 2 weeks!
REALLY! Come on, we know she did not get that body from the indicated jean size she is holding but that won’t stop the mind monkeys, oh no!
And just consider how many times you are influenced, the magazine with the latest celebrity diet, the impression that the images of looking and feeling great were achieved by themselves, with a DVD in the front room was exactly how they did it and you can too. If that were the case then why are there millions of dusty DVD’s hidden underbeds, sat on shelves, unopened in the packet around the country and owned by me and you still wanting to be that slimmer, healthier person? That my friend is your mind monkey at work!
Now do not get me wrong for some people these methods work, for some people they will have massive successes and you should celebrate and shout from the roof tops, you are responsible for your health and you are doing an amazing job. I have clients who have lost so much weight, feel amazing and are happy and confident after using many mainstream weight loss programmes, the difference is truly fantastic. Equally we see many repeat offenders I guess, people who have had the success but then gone back to their old ways and this is not a reflection of will power or even their efforts, much of the time it is those Mind Monkeys getting their wicked way and leading you into those pitfall traps that undo much of your hard work.
However, for many people we follow diets that make us hungry and depressed, we feel bad if we fall off the diet so we punish ourselves, some diets even punish us mentally by telling us that we have sinned or failed by not following the plan to the letter, we may succeed and then fail and succeed and fail, we join a club over and over and over never really finding the answer and all of this negativity feeds those pesky little mind monkeys who convince you now that if you stop eating you will lose weight and be slimmer, these mind monkeys feed the weight loss industry but starve you of nutrition, of positivity, confidence and self worth.
So take charge of your mind monkeys right now, here are some simple tips to stay healthy this January without letting those mind monkeys cause you any trouble!
- Eat fresh foods, lots of colourful veggies and fruits
- If you can not pronounce and ingredient, don’t eat it
- Drink water, herbal teas, hot lemon water try to hit your daily 2L
- Fats are good for you! Healthy fats should be part of your diet, do not replace a healthy fat like olive oil with a fat free alternative, you miss out on all the health benefits
- Be kind to yourself!
- Sleep, get your 8 hours
- Move, for so many reasons exercise is critical for long term health, do not make excuses get active!
- It’s all about balance, a typical diet phrase is falling off the wagon, we just don’t! If you are eating healthy and exercising and you head out for a meal with friends and have a pudding, first and foremost enjoy it and then consider the balance of your day or week! If you have eaten, drunk, slept or done 99 healthy things this week 1 pudding will not be the end of the world. It’s tiem to tame the mind monkey that would normally tell you that you have to wait until Monday to start it all again!
If you are looking for a new programme to support you weight loss consider finding one that challenges these mind monkeys, educates and empowers you to over come these pesky beasts when they rear their ugly heads.
The FitERin6 programme does just this and we love it!