Activate HOPE

Maybe you’re like me – you tried many diets or weight loss efforts before, and it just never worked long-term. We don’t really believe it’s possible to lose weight AND maintain that loss. “Everyone yo-yos, don’t they? It’s just part of the cycle.” It is true for many, but it doesn’t have to be.

We have to find hope, some way to believe we can do it – not just talking smack as you challenge your friend.  Not just cheerleading to hype yourself up with how this year I’m going to do it and keep it going forever!  Rah!!! 

Those things produce some emotional energy, but it’s hard to draw on that when you get home late after a really long day. That’s when, no matter what appetite suppressant or magic potion you’re using, you still find yourself staring longingly into the refrigerator for comfort and stress relief. 

We need hope, and that’s hard after you’ve spent years yo-yo-ing or killing it off with all the negative thoughts of your past efforts. Here’s the cool thing:  It can be inspired – as in something outside us raises our desire for it, or it can be activated — as in you do what you can to bring about the desired result. 

Activate HOPE

I like acronyms.  They help me remember.

H:  HAVE I done something really HARD and succeeded?  

Great. You’ve had challenges before, and you’ve achieved your goal or moved closer to it. You’ve done it before, so you can do it again.  Take courage.

O:  What OPTIONS do you have to create success?

What methods have worked for you?  How did each element help (or hinder) your success?  Create a list of options that will help you succeed. Then work out your plan to get there.

P:  PLAN and PERSISTENCE

Using the options that have worked before as well as new ideas, create a PLAN, and be PERSISTENT in working toward it.  How can you maintain your focus?  What reminders might you need?  How do you create action when you’re faltering?  What tools will keep you on track and moving forward?  What help and support do you need?

E:  Execute your plan. 

Daily — It takes some time to get comfortable with a new plan, then it becomes routine for you.  I gave up sugar five years ago.  It was tough at first, but within ten days, I no longer had the craving.  Within a month, I routinely declined any offer of sugar and didn’t feel at all deprived.  I don’t really like sugar anymore – it feels weird on my tongue.  If we keep executing our plan, it becomes our new normal.

That gives us hope.  That will help us succeed.

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