What’s the key to successful weight loss? A lot of people would say willpower? They’d be wrong. Yup, wrong as the devil.
The key, believe it or not, is not effortful resistance, like the willpower devotees would have you believe. The truth of the matter is that self-control is built over time through using many different weight loss strategies.
You might want to argue the issue further by saying that you use willpower to resist the temptation of immediate reward so you can hang in there for the long-term reward of weight loss success. But if you think about it, leaving it up to your willpower like this in the final moment just as you are battling temptation puts you right in the teeth of the tiger. This, of course, is a danger you want to avoid.
It’s best to take the down-to-the-wire temptation right out of the equation altogether. Strategies do this. Simple strategies like not keeping tempting fattening foods around the house prevent the allure of temptation. More sophisticated strategies having to do with personal changes and changes to your environment take you even further away from the familiar territories of eating too much food and eating fattening foods.
There is one more piece to the weight loss strategies solution. Enthusiasm. Not only will you need to develop and use weight loss strategies instead of counting on your willpower to kick in, you will also need to be enthusiastic about using your weight loss strategies.
So now you have it. Weight loss strategies vs. willpower. Strategies so you can change your environment and yourself, from the familiar eat all you can and binge on those tempting sweets, to slow, steady, enthusiastic accrual and execution of a game plan that takes you through thick and thin to your new goal.