There Are Better Weighs
to Measure Success!
Doris had been on and off of diets for decades. When she lost weight,
she felt like a success, regardless of the nutrition in her eating recently.
Losing weight was what mattered. If she gained weight, no matter HOW
HEALTHY she had been eating, she felt like a failure.
As she did more reading, she realized that MANY things
affect her weight. Water retention, reactions to medication, hormonal
changes, and so many things would cause her weight to go up or down.
Gradually she realized that her eating was only one factor in her daily
She also realized that she was driving herself crazy hoping
on the scale all the time. WHY was she doing that? Hummm? That is a
good question. Doris discovered that she was looking to the scale for
a measure of success. Was there some other way to measure success that
was not so emotionally draining? Was there another way that would not
make her feel so out of control and hopeless?
Yes, Doris decided to write down everything she ate. Then
she would know if she was successful at healthy eating. Well ... that
did not work. She began to feel like she was back on the same old program
that had not worked the last seven times she had tried it. There must
be a better way. So Doris decided to encourage herself. She would give
herself a green star every time she ate a nice amount of vegetables
in a day. She gave herself a red star when she ate more fruits. This
was cool. She really enjoyed seeing all the stars on her calendar. She
realized she was choosing fruits and veggies more often because of this
system for appreciating her success. This worked for Doris.
A key to choosing the right way to measure your success is to figure
out how much appreciation you need and how much time you want to put
into it. Answer these simple questions to help decide what is right
1.) Do you want to commit time to this process of measuring your success?
Will it help you to feel more involved and feel like you are making
progress if you spend a little more time recording your successes or
writing in a journal?
2.) Are you so busy and stressed that you literally only have a second
or two to appreciate your efforts? Would it be better for you to take
a moment in the morning to think about yesterday and note your successes?
Or would it feel better to take a moment at night and appreciate the
successes of that day?
Look at your reactions to the above questions. Pay attention to how
you feel and how you react. One week you may just do what Doris did
and give yourself stars once a day. Another week you may want to journal
extensively noting several of your healthy eating choices and movement
successes. You MUST have a way to appreciate your successes, or else
it will feel like you don't have any. You choose HOW to appreciate your
success, and you keep choosing different ways as your life changes.
Everybody deserves appreciation, especially you. This awareness of your
ACTIONS of healthy living will motivate you to continue!
Week at a Glance
Do you want to record your successes in a moments time? Good. Then just
Write the days of the week across a piece of paper. Give yourself stars
on the days when you succeed at healthy living ACTIONS. This is your
week at a glance worksheet. You can choose your focus. Do you want to
increase your fruits and veggies? You could use red and green stars
or that. Do you want to focus on drinking more water? A blue star works
well for water. What about movement or exercise? Do you want to give
yourself a gold star for the days that you get moving?
Some of my clients have enjoyed getting all sorts of stickers
that they personally enjoy. There are zillions of choices. If this will
make things more fun for you, then go get your stickers. Sometimes the
investment in the stickers will help you to use this system of measuring
your success. Sometimes it is best to just draw stars with colored pencils
or markers. You choose what is best for you.
Now, here is the good part. Make sure to look back over
the past weeks. When you need a feeling of success, just flip through
the pages and pages that represent so many healthy living choices. Seeing
all those stars or stickers will really help you feel great!
My Success Journal
Do you want to invest more time and energy into recording your successes.
Try a success journal. Each morning you think of yesterday and note
your successes at self-care. Or each evening you take a few minutes
to write on the self-care ACTION of today. You tune in and find out
which time of day is best for you. Experiment. Try morning and then
try evening. Do some problem solving to get one time of day to work
out for you.
When you have your success journal started, go back and
read parts of it. NOTICE all the wonderful self-care things you do.
The act of appreciating your self-care will help keep you motivated
to continue. Everybody needs praise. Praise yourself. It will keep you
going in the right direction.
More Ways to Track Your Success
I recommend that every one fills out the Questionnaire
from my website about once a month or so. It will help you notice the improvements in health and function of your
body. THAT is a real measure of your success.
Measure your success by noticing
the changes and improvements in how you feel,
what you can do, and your health status.
Measure your success by the improvements in your wellness, happiness,
These improvements will keep you motivated more effectively than a scale