I started my Not Fueled by Chocolate Diet and Exercise program in April of this year. Six months into the project – I’ve come to the realization that it is going to take a lot longer than six months to achieve my goal! That means I still can’t have a stash of dark chocolate in the house.
Why? I am 1/3 a Chocoholic. That is to say, on the few occasions I have had access to a dark chocolate bar, I am Chocoholic Signal 1 – not particularly good at limiting my intake to, lets say, a square a day. Fortunately, I am not Chocoholic Signal 2 – having intense cravings and Chocoholic Signal 3 – eating it despite the consequences!
No, I am not inclined to nibble a mere 70 calorie chunk and be content. It takes a full 200 chocolate calories (or more) to satisfy my palate. I’d have to add another 3 miles of walking a day to make that calorie neutral. That isn’t going to happen, which brings me back to where I started – I can’t have chocolate in the house.
But I’m down 6 to 8 pounds on average (can someone tell me how a woman’s weight can fluctuate by several pounds from one day to the next!) and some of my clothes are visibly too big – that’s the progress that keeps me going. There is no grand secret to my success. It comes down to changing a few habits.
I kickstarted my Not Fueled by Chocolate program by reading the book The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg. It is an excellent book to read if you want to change something in your life, but you don’t seem to have the willpower to make the change ‘stick‘!
Rather, to change a habit, you must keep the old cue, and deliver the old reward, but insert a new routine… This process within our brains is a three-step loop. First, there is a cue, a trigger that tells your brain to go into automatic mode and which habit to use. Then there is the routine, which can be physical or mental or emotional. Finally, there is a reward, which helps your brain figure out if this particular loop is worth remembering for the future: THE HABIT LOOP… This is the real power of habit: the insight that your habits are what you choose them to be.
― Charles Duhigg, The Power Of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business
What habit have you changed or what habit would you like to change?