“Laura, a fifty-three-year-old project manager, had struggled with her weight for many years. She had tried diet after diet without lasting success. Learning how to focus on gratitude, correct her negative thought patterns, and learn from mistakes rather than beat herself up, together with the elements of faith, food, fitness and friends made a huge long-term difference for her. She lost forty-three pounds over six months and became dedicated to a new way of living instead of a fad diet.” From The Daniel Plan by Rick Warren.
Notice the first step in having a better life and losing weight is gratitude. It is amazing how powerful gratitude is. Making a list of things you like or love increases gratitude and makes us stronger. Things we like might be people, places or things. It might be our pets, children, grandchildren, friends, home, books, music, trees, lakes, etc. Whether you want success in relationships, career, weight loss or just about anything else, gratitude and a good attitude make a big difference.
Laura corrected her negative thought patterns. She began to learn from mistakes instead of beat herself up over them. One of the hardest things for many people to do is to love themselves and forgive themselves.
It takes discipline to lose weight. We have to get rid of some things that we really like. The best way to quit any bad habit is to use the replacement principle. Replace the joy of the old, bad habit with the joy and fun of something new. Isaac Newton was right, nature abhors a vacuum. Think of a bad habit as dirty air in a glass. If you want to get rid of the dirty air you can attach a vacuum pump and try to pump the air out, but you will never completely succeed. Air will seep into the glass no matter how hard you try to keep it out. The longer you try to keep it out, the more difficult it will become. An easier way is to pour water into the glass. The air will be pushed out. So when you get rid of something in your life, push it out by replacing it with something else.
You can replace high calorie food with healthy, low calorie food such as fruits and vegetables. Sitting on a couch watching TV can be replaced with walking or volleyball at a local church or YMCA. Most people can find some kind of activity they enjoy that provides exercise.
Warren says that research shows people who get healthy with a buddy lose twice as much weight as those who do it alone.
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