The Cure for “I’ll-Start-Monday” Syndrome

by Christine Lusita | | Lifestyle

You Can’t Hurry Love . . . or Change . . . or Weight Loss!

I HAVE A FRIEND who decided that she was going to quit sugar. Forever. So the day be- fore she quit, she said good-bye to her sugar by loading up on brownies and ice cream and Frappuccinos.

Sound familiar?

Hey, we all have the I’ll-Start-Monday Syndrome. For instance, every year I made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight. Every year I failed. Because change does not happen on a certain date, not even January 1. Change is a process. It takes time. It requires balance and rewards.

Here are three truths about change, which reveal why my well-meaning friend was back on sugar within a week.

Truth Number One: Positive change happens organically.

Most of us approach dieting as if jumping into an unheated pool: with gritted teeth and grim determination. It doesn’t really matter if we “know” it’s the right thing to do. All we know is that it doesn’t feel very good, and the bigger the dieting change we make, the less good it feels.

Author James Clear, the habit-change guru, tells us that any change, positive or nega- tive, sets us up for resistance. And, he writes, “Resistance is proportionate to the size and speed of change, not to whether it’s favorable or unfavorable.” That’s because na- ture—particularly human nature—is geared toward stability. With apologies to Science 101, a body at rest tends to stay at rest, and if that same body is forced into cross-training every day, it’s going to want to double-down on TV time.

So the best way—and often the only way—to sustain positive change is to do it as it feels right. If you’re cutting out sugar, do it one packet at a time until that becomes the new normal. Baby steps!

This is an excerpt from The Right Fit Formula