Happy Monday morning and Day 16!
Yesterday’s post (found here) encouraged us to look at what keeps us motivated and accountable.
The tricky thing about motivation – It’s different for everyone.
You see this especially when it comes to healthy lifestyle choices.
For me, I have always enjoyed having goals and can usually motivate myself to meet them. I have high expectations of myself.
I used to get frustrated when others weren’t the same, not understanding that they are motivated in different ways.
Learning more about human nature has taught me to embrace the differences 💚
Because we need different methods and safety nets to help us make healthy choices, below I’ve summarised a few things that can really help different people stay on track.
But it’s up to YOU to find what works for you. Nobody else can do this work, and it’s the most important work.
So after reading the below, I encourage you to consider: What do I need to be healthy?
Here’s my 5 tips for making YOUR plan for success and create healthy habits.
Tip 1. Create a realistic meal plan
If the word plan even makes you shudder, consider it a meal inspiration list 😉
Use the blank planners included in the meal plan from the challenge, or just keep a simple list and put it on your fridge. Don’t plan a gourmet 3 course meal on Tuesdays if you know thats your busiest day at work. Don’t expect more of yourself than what you know is realistic. Keep it simple, but exciting enough that you WANT to eat that food at the end of a busy day. The biggest one for me? I need to be able to cook my weeknight meals faster than I can get takeaway. So 30 minutes and less, minimal ingredients and not much hands on time means weeknight success for me.
Tip 2. Have a plan B… and C
Life gets in the way, but having back up plans and ‘going with the flow’ will help you stay aligned with your goals.
Have a few meals always in the freezer to grab for emergencies. Keep some basics in the pantry even if they aren’t ‘perfect’. Have a list of ‘safe’ and reliable takeaway options for when there’s no other option. And a quick list of those REALLY easy meals (i use notes in my phone) can be great when you can’t even decide what to do. Things like supermarket roast chicken and a packet salad or omelettes and frittatas – 10 minutes and you’re eating a delicious meal.
Tip 3. Learn from mistakes but don’t dwell on them
If you’ve been doing Keto for a while, no doubt you’ve eaten something and THEN checked the carb count only to be shocked. It can lead to a bit of a spiral of self doubt or sabotage – but it doesn’t have to. Some of us sweat the small stuff, I know I can. But learning to acknowledge it is key – let any guilt or shame or disappointment come and go again. We’ve learnt a lesson, one small mistake doesn’t destroy all the other healthy decisions we’ve made. Your very next bite to eat is a decision in the right direction. Keep learning, keep tweaking your style.
Tip 4. Put your blinkers on
If you’re like me, even having high carb foods in the house is too much temptation. It is simpler for me to remove the temptation completely. My long suffering husband has to hide the bread he buys 😆 But seriously, I know my limits. It’s like the carbs call to me, even after so many years on keto. If that’s not addiction I don’t know what is. Removing the temptation also applies to social situations – if I know there’s not going to be keto options, I’ll eat beforehand so the temptation is not there.
Tip 5. Reduce your decision fatigue
You might have heard of decision fatigue. We make thousands of decisions every single day from what to wear, how to do our hair, every decision around work and home life and of course what to eat. Our ability to make good decisions wears out during the day (one of the reasons it’s harder to make good decisions at night time!!). So, remove as many decisions as you can and you are comfortable with.
Some people might find this a little constricting, but I find it gives me MORE energy and control over the important decision. So, remove the decision of what to have to eat by making a plan at the start of the week and following it. I eat the same breakfast and lunch for a whole week – no decisions required. Auto pilot. More energy for important decisions, and more decision making capacity left at the end of the day, to decide NOT to eat chocolate 😆
I hope some of these tips will help you decide on what your plan for success looks like. Is it a strict meal plan, but with simple meals?
Or do you need a bit more flexibility, but you’ll stock the freezer up with meals so you don’t have to think about dinner?
Whatever it is, finding what works for YOU is key.