Women say this to me all the time, "I'm either ON or OFF; there's no middle ground."
"And when I'm off, I'm WAY off."
Can you relate to this?
It's a pretty common problem. I used to be this exact same way...
Eating perfectly or on a crazy bender.
Working out like a fiend or doing nothing at all.
Meditating every day or not once for months.
I'd make progress in short, intense bursts, but then I'd lose all the ground I'd gained and sometimes more when I got off my game. And then I'd beat myself up for being unable to stick with anything. Not exactly an effective formula for creating change.
The good news? The solution isn't just up your game and get perfect all the time already. Phew. We've all tried that and have plenty of battle scars to prove it doesn't work.
The key to this conundrum is to nix the all or nothing thinking and embrace the idea that self-improvement is an iterative process.
After awhile, it becomes easy to meal plan and eat healthy each week; it's part of your routine to work out and meditate more often than not; it feels natural to only drink alcohol on the weekend or have sugar here and there. But this process takes time. And self-forgiveness. And grace.
Expecting perfection and motivating yourself with an internal dialogue about how much you suck is setting you up for failure. It will never create sustainable, long-term results.
Is there an area of your life in which you've been telling yourself you have to make dramatic change? Maybe it feels so big that many days you hit the couch for Netflix and wine rather than face it?
This week I encourage you to scale back. Pick the baby step you know you can conquer. And then celebrate the heck out of it. Tell yourself that you are getting better in this area step by step and a bad day or a slip up is ok because you'll be at it again the next day with another baby step.
Consistent imperfect action + mindset = actual change. Coaching helps with both. See what my client Marcia has to say about it:
I'll admit, I was hesitant to start working with Rachel. I was worried it would just be one more thing I tried and failed. My relationship with food had been complicated as long as I could remember and it was hard to feel hopeful. From the beginning, Rachel assured me I couldn't fail at this process as long as I stuck with it, and she was right there with me every step of the way. Coaching isn't the magic pill, it's actually a lot of hard work but I can honestly say on the other side, my relationship to food and myself are healthier and happier than I every could have imagined.
Working with Rachel, I learned to show up for myself each day. I learned I'm perfect the way I am. Most of all I learned my perfect isn't perfect... but it is beautiful, healthy and free. And I am so much happier and more at peace with myself and around food with new knowledge firmly planted and blooming in my life.
There is a better way than simply ON or OFF. I've got one coaching spot opening for mid-April; let's chat and see if it's yours!