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The waiting game...

From: HypnoBlog,

The waiting game...

Itʼs oh so easy to start things and itʼs so much harder to finish them off*.

Imagine how life might be if it wasnʼt like that. Weʼd all have fantastic pension pots, weʼd never need to start another diet, we wouldnʼt stay in damaging relationships or jobs that are well past their use by date. Wow! Life would be great, wouldnʼt it?

But why is it so hard to stick to things even when we know they are what we really want, or at least in our best interests? I think part of it is because we get bored waiting. Our society is so geared up for instant results and immediate gratification that weʼve lost the art of waiting for something. Sadly some things just arenʼt that instantaneous no matter how much we are led to believe that they are.

Losing weight is a classic example of this. As a hypnotherapist itʼs one of the things I see clients about most frequently. Itʼs also one of the things that, no matter what the media tell us, doesnʼt happen overnight. Itʼs a slow process because when you do it healthily you wonʼt lose more than a pound a week and sometimes itʼs even slower than that.

Now a pound a week is simply imperceptible at the time; it will only be when you look back after three or four months that youʼll notice any difference at all. And when youʼre living it three months can seem like an eternity. Without doubt hypnotherapy helps and itʼs most effective when the client puts the effort in too.

Of course one of the hardest things is sticking to something when you donʼt see any reward; a bit like putting money into your pension when the value of your fund is plummeting. So here are five suggestions from my clients that have helped them stay motivated (normally at around week six of their treatment when their weight reduction stalls) and happy to play the waiting game on the way to achieving their weight loss goals.

  1. Reward yourself for effort as well as achievement - deep down you know that the effort you are putting in will pay off. So give yourself little treats for when you put the effort in, even if you donʼt shift any pounds that week. Make sure any treats are not even remotely food related but totally linked to feeling good about yourself - magazines, long baths, walk in the park, cinema, fish pedicure.
  2. Use distraction to side step temptation - EFT will help with cravings, so does drinking herbal tea as a substitute for sweets (try Pukka detox or vanilla chai as theyʼre lush), you might also try the old classic of going for a walk and use the time to refocus on your goal or listen to your favourite CD and have a dance instead.
  3. Keep a photo of a slim ʻyouʼ on the fridge - cut out a photo of your ideal body from a magazine and add a picture of your face to it. Use the image to remind you of your ʻideal weight goalʼ whenever you think about food (donʼt just call her names every time you open the fridge door as itʼs much less effective!).
  4. Reward yourself for mini-achievements along the way - try something like putting £20 away for every single pound you get rid of, watch the pile of money growing in a highly visible place, you could even use coins to exaggerate the visual impact. Then when you do reach your goal spend it on clothes in your new size or just a pair of outlandishly expensive jeans. This idea also works if someone else gives you the money!
  5. Have something real and tangible to look forward to thatʼs tied to a specific and realistic date - one client wants a size 12 dress for her wedding anniversary and has booked the date in her diary to go shopping for it. Success for her is not optional.

Now, Iʼd love to know what you do help yourself play the waiting game, not just for weight loss but for anything you have to wait for. How do you keep on track to finish those things you start? Please do email me any suggestions!

(*Well, everything except for a delicious chilled rioja rose that is.)

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