How To Make It Easier
To Quit Drinking
& Stay On Your Diet
One of the things I teach clients is how much control they have over their experiences.
Most of them come to me because they struggle to cut back on their drinking, stay on their diets, and live healthier lives.
The first step to help them make it easier is to show them why it’s hard.
The answer is always the same.
It’s hard because of the thoughts they’re choosing.
No one likes to hear this.
Nobody wants to believe they are the cause of their problem.
We spend most of our time trying to prove our belief that we are victims of circumstance.
We’re always looking for another way to justify why we can’t do something.
We’re constantly looking to blame anything and everything outside of us for our lack of results.
We make excuses by telling ourselves things like…
- I’m too busy with work to start an exercise routine and cook healthier meals.
- If my spouse cut back on their drinking, it would be easier for me.
- I’ll try to cut back on my drinking and start a healthier diet when things calm down a little.
The truth is, we are the one and only source of our problems and struggles.
We make achieving our goals hard.
And we do it by the thoughts we’re choosing.
Nobody and nothing outside of us is responsible for how we think, feel, act, or the results we create.
Honestly, I didn’t like hearing this very much the first time either.
I recoiled when my coach shared this with me.
I didn’t like hearing it because I knew it was true.
And then she pointed out that if I really believed this was true…
If I was the one and only source and cause of my problems…
Then I am the one and only solution too.
That idea felt pretty great.
Accepting it gave me a sense of control I never had before.
Or more accurately, it allowed me to take back the control I had been giving away.
Once my clients begin to open up to this idea, we spend time uncovering and discussing the thoughts they’re choosing that make it difficult for them to accomplish their goals.
One of the most common thoughts they choose that get’s in the way begins with how they state their goals.
They choose an overly ambitious, absolute way of stating what they want to accomplish.
They want to quit drinking forever.
They’ll say they want never to eat sugary foods or snack between meals again.
Or they’ll say they want to lose 35 pounds this year.
There’s no doubt you can accomplish anything you set your mind to.
If you’re stating your goal in an overly ambitious, all-or-nothing way, you’re making it a lot harder than it needs to be.
How do I know this?
How do you feel when you state your goal in absolute terms?
How do you feel when you say I want to quit forever?
When I ask my clients that same question, most will explain they feel overwhelmed, tense, tight, or restricted.
When you are doing something that doesn’t feel good, you don’t do it for very long.
You find a reason to give up.
Simply changing the way you frame your goal and think about it can make accomplishing it so much easier.
Instead of thinking in absolute terms, think about accomplishing your goal one day or one moment at a time.
Instead of quitting drinking forever, how about not drinking tonight or this weekend?
Accomplish that goal, and then set another goal for yourself tomorrow or next weekend.
Instead of never eating sugary foods or snacking between meals again, how about making that your goal just for today?
Instead of losing 35 pounds this year, why not set a goal to eat right and exercise today?
It just feels easier, doesn’t it?
The easier it is, the more likely you will continue doing it.
You’ll find that if you make it easy for yourself by setting your goals one day at a time, you won’t need to set the goal anymore.
You’ll just do it without needing to think about it.
Isn’t that the point anyway?
Eliminating the struggle and making the behavior you want a natural part of yourself makes it a no-brainer.
Another huge benefit of setting your goals this way is the self-trust you build.
The relationship you have with yourself improves.
You become a person with integrity and keep your commitments to yourself and other people.
When you say you’re going to do something, you do it.
Because of your self-trust, every future commitment you make becomes even easier to keep.
The momentum you build allows you to make and conquer an ever-growing list of loftier goals.
You are the source of and the solution to your problems.
You can make it easier to accomplish any goal you set.
Deliberately choose the thoughts that make it easier.
Set your goals one day at a time and watch what happens.