I’m trying to lose weight. Not a lot, but about ten pounds. I struggle with it because I don’t practice self control around food very well. Maybe it’s because I know I’m not that overweight. Maybe it’s because I like food too much. Whatever the reason, I failed at controlling myself for a week or two before I realized if I was going to do this I needed to find some sort of system to fix it.
I joined a Facebook group for weight loss support. I felt silly in it. People were trying to lose mass amount of weight and here I was trying to drop ten pounds. It seemed like maybe this wasn’t the place for me. But it was, not because I related to all the posts, in fact, a lot of them I don’t. It worked because I was constantly reminded of my goals, I was constantly reminded that I was trying to do this and I had decided that it mattered enough to me to join a group, or to comment.
I saw the posts when I logged on. I got notifications on my phone when people commented on something I had commented on.
Some people would argue that it was the support that I needed, but I haven’t made posts to have people support my journey. I’ve rather been supporting others. Dishing out support might be helpful, but it’s helpful in the same way giving your friend advice is helpful. It reminds you that you know what you’re supposed to be doing. You have all this knowledge, you just need to apply it! It’s simple if you get control over yourself.
And the constant pinging, the constant visuals, they all remind you that you need to have control over yourself, and I think those reminders are valuable in more ways than one, and I think this lesson translates to anything we’re trying to do not just weight loss. It’s why we hear about people sticking post it notes to everything with quotes on it. It might seem silly, but it works for them because they’re reminding themselves of their goals constantly. They see the reminders every time, even if they hardly read the quotes after a while, just seeing that little square sets them in the right direction.
There are so many ways to remind yourself to stay in control. There are so many ways to push yourself forward. The question isn’t if they work, it’s how do you set up your system?