How Your Perspective Affects Your Willpower
When it comes to achieving our health and weight goals, the most overlooked tool in our toolbox is our point of view. The research clearly shows that our perpsective is a huge factor in whether we will ultimately follow through on what it takes to make our goals a reality.
It all boils down to the type of mental and emotional energy that is driving our behaviors.
It turns out that the classic willpower script where we coerce, restrict or shame ourselves with: “I have to lose weight”, “I should make healthier meals for myself”. “I won’t eat xxxx anymore”, “I have to stop doing xxx”…actually backfires because it exerts way too much energy as far as our survival oriented brains our concerned.
When we expend energy in this way, our brain sends a message to our body to stop, rest and replenish. It directs us to follow the path of least resistance or take the easier way around and sure enough that’s what creates the excuses to give up now and resume your plans later.
When you see your goals as “obligations” all your subconscious mind hears is that there are actually better things that you want to be doing with your time but you’re being restricted by something you planned days or weeks ago. So your mind never really gets on board and is already predisposed to “just skip it”, “give up”, “start tomorrow”.
Here are 2 simple but powerful techniques that you can use to change this dynamic when it comes to setting your lifestyle goals.
#1 Obligation Becomes Opportunity:
Change “I HAVE to eat and cook healthier meals” to “I GET to eat and cook healthier meals and improve my health”. Instead of “I HAVE” to exercise. “I “GET” to exercise and feel great about making myself a priority.”
***Your subconscious mind hears your intention as an opportunity and the immediate benefits of you following through. There’s no coercion energy, i.e. no need for short term willpower.
Your source of motivation gets completely shfted by simply changing your perspective to “I GET TO”
#2 Change Your Identity
Change “I CAN”T” eat _____” to “I DON”T eat ______” . This stops the whole dynamic of deprivation and self sabotage. Because you know when you tell yourself you “CAN’T”, you just want it even more. With “I CANT”, your subconscious mind hears “I would eat ____, but I there’s some external reason that’s stopping me “– and it doesn’t really matter what that reason is, it’s just something standing in the way of what you really want.
With “I DON’T eat ____”; you can begin to identify as someone who eats healthy, listens to their body’s true needs, which helps diffuse cravings and make you a more conscious eater.