Coaching Yourself

At the outset, everyone who goes on a diet- or fitness program is a sure winner. But no matter how dedicated you are, sticking to the game plan for the long haul is the real challenge. Prepare yourself for failure. There will be times when you simply slip up. If that feels too discouraging for you to keep trying, you need to call on your “inner coach.”

Like a Good Coach
Focus on Your Strengths
And Diminish Your Weaknesses

Encouraging you to coach yourself is not a polite way of saying “get your act together.” I call it “self-coaching,” because that is what you should do when you are struggling. Like a good coach, you want to focus on your strengths in order to diminish your weaknesses. Dwelling on the negative will only push you further into your funk.

Your inner coach is not supposed to be your taskmaster, a nagging voice from deep inside that mercilessly puts you down for every small indiscretion. Self-coaching has nothing to do with self-flagellation. On the contrary, it means directing yourself patiently but determinedly towards your ultimate goals.

Temptations come and go. Keep reminding yourself of what you ultimately want and what really matters to you. This will help you to eventually stay on track. If the task turns out to be too tough at times, try to find ways that are less trying. Any detour is better than not moving at all.

Always be patient and generously forgive yourself when failure occurs but make the necessary corrections without delay. Setbacks always provide new opportunities for learning. Most importantly, stay motivated.

If nothing else seems to work, bribe yourself a little. Perhaps you want to look sexy in your new swimsuit and the thought of showing off your body on the beach will keep you going. Ultimately, of course, you should view your overall health and well-being as your guiding principle. Keep asking yourself: Who do I want to be? Then act upon your answer.

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