Do you hate the idea of planning your food ahead of time as part of a weight-loss strategy?
Most of my clients feel this way.
They tell me traditional food planning is tedious and feels restrictive to be locked into eating what you planned ahead of time. Besides, we all know that when we food plan we plan to eat ‘good foods’ virtuously, then we inevitably eat off-plan, logging food failure after food failure, until eventually, we make it all mean we just can’t eat the way we need to in order to lose weight.
No wonder most of us hate the idea of food planning and resist doing it. BUT it’s still true that food planning is the most powerful weight loss tool you can use to develop and practice NEW food habits that will allow you to lose weight and live at your goal weight for life.
When you think about your future self who has lost her weight, it’s kind of obvious that she eats differently than the version of her that is overweight. Learning how to eat differently and replacing those old eating habits with new eating habits is the key to permanent weight loss.
So how do we learn new eating habits?
–> By planning what you will eat ahead of time and then practicing following that plan every day until it becomes automatic.
First, you need to be aware of the current habits you have around food that are keeping you overweight such as overeating, over-desiring food, eating when you aren’t hungry, eating to feel better emotionally, and eating too often are some of the main food habits that you are probably not even aware that you are doing because you are doing them unconsciously.
When you food plan ahead of time for what you will eat and then practice following that plan, your current mindset & food habits will be REVEALED. Because you won’t follow your plan. But this doesn’t have to be a problem if the goal is to identify the current food habits in place that are revealed when you eat off-plan.
This changes everything about how to think about food planning.
You are of course practicing eating from your plan, but when you DO eat off-plan it’s NOT a mess-up. It’s an opportunity to identify unconscious food habits operating under the surface by closely evaluating your habit cues, thinking, and automatic responses. Then you can LEARN FROM THE off-plan eats to figure out what needs to change.
—>You’ll evaluate your plan to figure out WHAT WENT WRONG AND WHY.
—>Then you can go about testing some new ways to think about overeating, hunger, and satiety to start learning and practicing new food habits that will result in weight loss.
So I invite you to try this method of food planning which I call Positive Food Planning. You can do it in just a few easy steps:
- Plan your food meals daily first thing in the morning by writing down what and when you will eat that day.
- Your food plan should be practical, easy, and yummy while also resonating with your inner knowing that eating this way supports your weight loss without being overly restrictive.
- Only eat if you are hungry and stop when you’ve had enough.
- Evaluate your food plan at the end of the day or the next morning. Note any off-plan eating with curiosity to discover why it happened and how to change your food habits and try new things.
Reward yourself for food planning daily. Make it fun and easy. Do it every single day for 30 days and I guarantee you you will be practicing new food habits that support your weight loss goals.
You’ve now learned why food planning can help you with weight loss and how to make it more positive. I hope you feel more curious and motivated to try Positive Food Planning and can appreciate what a powerful and easy tool it is to make weight loss easier than you ever imagined.
Questions? Leave me a comment below and I’ll do my best to help.