Forgive yourself when you don’t meet your expectations in order to live a happy, healthy lifestyle

I spent so many years of my life “failing” at living a happy, healthy lifestyle because I thought I had to be perfect in order to be successful. This constant feeling of failure perpetuated the cycle of diet/fail/repeat, which is why the number one rule for living an I’mperfect Life is to “Forgive yourself when you don’t meet your expectations.”

Forgiveness is key

When we approach weight loss and lifestyle change, we tend to get caught up in the rules that diet-plans set forth for us; we think we need to perfectly execute those rules in order to be successful. Then the first time we make an impulsive decision to eat something we “shouldn’t” or we miss a workout, we believe that we’ve “messed up” (blew it, gave in, lost control, or fell off the wagon) leaving us to feel unsuccessful.

We let these ideas consume us and instead of forgiving ourselves, making sure that our next choice is one that does meet our expectations, we let this one impulsive decision negatively affect our next decision in a way that does not benefit us by saying things like, “I’ll just start over tomorrow!” (or next week, or next month, or…?)

Gave in and got a Snickers Bar from the vending machine even though you swore you wouldn’t?

So what?forgive yourself

Forgive yourself now and move on

Don’t waste time starting over tomorrow, on Sunday, on Monday, or you know, whenever the next “right” start-date comes around. Doing so will only prolong the process and delay achieving your goals.

The more we allow this to happen the more likely we are to end up feeling as though we failed, full of guilt, remorse, and shame, feeling helpless and hopeless, like we are broken and incapable of ever being truly happy, and healthy.  If you have ever felt this way, you are not alone. I lived there for a long, long time, it’s what ultimately got me to 328lbs.

Consistency is absolutely necessary in order to lose weight and create new, lifelong habits—habits that take a lot of practice, but that doesn’t mean perfection is required.

When we look at “diet” as pass or fail, we never actually make any progress and instead we waste valuable energy beating ourselves up, keeping ourselves from living the life we want to live.

By making forgiveness the first thing you do when you don’t meet your expectations, you bypass the feelings of guilt and shame, and begin the mind shift necessary to create true, lifelong health and happiness.

So next time you don’t meet your expectations, which will happen, because you’re only human, practice rule number one. Forgive yourself instantly and then move on. Don’t wait for tomorrow, or next week, or next month.

The rest of your life is today, no perfection necessary.

Follow all the rules for living a happy, healthy I’mperfect Life: The Rules

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Andrea Matthes,

CPT-CFL1, Lifestyle Coach

Letting go of perfection to live a happy, healthy lifestyle.

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