A little over 4 years ago I ran up the hill pictured above to propose to my wife, Sonia.

I made her run up there too.

She had no idea that I was going to propose. I mean why else would I have a rucksack containing bubbles, truffles and of course a ring?

A couple of days ago I ran up there on my own.

Lord of the rings country is what we call it.

It got me reflecting about the past year of my life. I set myself a goal to be living in this area before my son, Etienne starts school. Easy, right?

Well, actually, setting the goal and getting it in motion is easy. Putting the house up for sale. Finding a new home to move into. Move contents into new house. Easy.

Think about this though.

I set that goal in April 2015.

I wrote it down, and I verbalised it with a good friend.

I floated the idea to Sonia, who had a thriving career and physiotherapy business in Bristol.

Over the next year we mulled over the idea, and decided to go for it. We drove to Pembrokeshire and took a weekend to find a new home. In the space of 24 hours we had placed an offer on a house in our new area. And placed our current house in Bristol on the market.

Did we have jobs to go to?

No.

Side note: I am a mediator by the way, which explains a lot about why I’m a coach and why I follow the feeling – the big picture – and not the details. I highly recommend taking the free test at http://16personalities.com

Did we know how we were going to make it work?

No.

What we do know is that we have a great vision that aligned with our values.

Thinking Back To The Goal.

It never would have happened had it not been set.

And had we known how hard it actually was to achieve, maybe we wouldn’t have attempted it.

In the process we lost 3 houses just before completion. We experienced delays in the new build. We were essentially homeless for 8 weeks – with 2 small children! We even spent a week at Bluestone resort to ‘buy time’… oh the hardship.

In all seriousness we couldn’t have done this without the support from family – you know who you are.

Still A Long Way To Go

We’re still a long way off being settled, and my 2021 goal (for another time), but looking back down the hill and contemplating this past year was actually quite satisfying.

And here’s the thing.

This is not dissimilar to health and fitness related goals. Even if you feel miles away from your ultimate goal, scanning for small wins can help to show you how far you’ve come.

Ask yourself:

  • What went well this week?
  • What have you done to move in the right direction?
  • What challenges have you faced?
  • What might come up over the next 2 weeks and how can you plan now to ensure to overcome them
  • Take some time to jot down the answers in a journal.

Everyone has a journey and what is important (I didn’t say easy) to remember is that any journey from where you are today to where you want to be is never a straight line.

The Power Of Values For Weight Loss

Are your weight loss goals ruining you?

What are your goals?

What are your values?

When it comes to weight loss, it’s easy to end up at a destination that isn’t in the direction you actually wanted to go. That’s how people lose weight, find themselves in a lifestyle they hate and can’t sustain, and then gain it all back.

This activity on logical levels might help.

If you’re tired of gaining it all back, read on:

A Focus On Goals:

Let’s take a look at Sue’s experience.

Sue took time to clarify her values, she’d say that what she wants for her food habits and for her body is:

  • Peace
  • Confidence
  • Results she can maintain for life
  • But she also sets a goal of losing 15 lbs in 12 weeks.

 

On the surface, between 1 to 2lbs per week is a reasonable weight loss goal. So what could possibly go wrong?

Week 1. Sue get started on basic food skills and loses a pound in the first week.

Week 2. More weight loss and she’s dropped 2lbs. She’d off target though. To be on target for her goal goal she should have lost 2 and a half pounds now. She starts to get anxious feeling behind.

Week 3. Week 3 is birthday week. She knows she’s behind so she makes sure not to order what she wants when they go out for dinner with her spouse. No wine or desert, Sue feels like she missed out. She has lost 3/4lbs. Her total weight loss now is 2.75lbs, but to be on track for her goal she needs to have lost 3.75lbs at this stage.. She’s really frustrated. Sad, that even with missing out she’s still off track from her goal.

Week 4. Get back on track. Track every calorie. She figures that if she can really cut hard she can get back on track. She’s hungry all the time, tracks every calorie, and loses 2lbs. She’s on her way to being back on track and feels awesome.

Week 5. Sue plans to keep catching up. On Wednesday, hunger gets the better of her and she overeats. She looks at the calories, knows she blew the whole week, and eats whatever she wants for the rest of the week. Sunday she weighs, finds herself up a pound, and is despondent.

Week 6. The sixth week, she decides to cut even harder. No carbs, no fat, just protein and vegetables. Her weight is down 2lbs in 3 days and she thinks she found the key. Then she has a terrible day at work, snaps, and eats a brownie. Knowing she blew her no carbs plan, she has pizza for dinner. She follows that with crisps. At the end of the night, she feels bloated, uncomfortably full, and didn’t even enjoy any of the things she ate. She gets on the scale the next morning to “see how much damage she did” and she gained back the 2lbs she lost the first three days of the week. She gives up completely.

I’m sure we’ve all seen some version of this cycle repeat a million times. If you look at her values (peace, confidence, results she can maintain for life) we can see that she sacrificed those to try to hit her goal.

A Focus On Values:

What would the same week would look like if she came at it from the perspective of valued direction?

Week six of food skills practice: Sue has been working on eating slowly when hungry, stopping when satisfied. Foundation food skills. Weight loss is never a straight line, but she’s still lost 4lbs.

How does she feel? Great, because skill practice aligns with her values. She feels good because she’s practicing being the kind of person she wants to be.

Weight loss has been simply a welcome side effect of consistent skill practice.

She doesn’t have to stress about how fast or slow it goes, because she’s already being the person she wants to be. She already feels peaceful and confident, knowing she’s doing her skills, and knowing everything is going in the right direction.

Once you clarify your values, you have a filter to test your actions against. Ask yourself “is this action in line with my values?”

When it comes to losing weight, there will be setbacks. There will be hard times. And once you reach your goal, you want to make sure you want to stay there. You want to make sure that it aligns with your values.

I hope you enjoyed this reflection of my past year, and that it helped you to question whether your goal is aligned with your true values, and to look back at the small wins to see how far you’ve come.

Have a great day,
Nico.

PS. If you need a next step these might just help you:

Take a look at this activity, save it to you local device and complete the activity.
This activity on creating awesome habits may help.
If you’re stuck with your own goals, values, or any other nutrition, health and fitness related matter and you want some help getting unstuck, you’re welcome to request a consultation here.

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