There are levels when it comes to reducing your weight. First, there is your intention. “I intend to lose all of my unwanted weight.” You can make what you intend to do even more specific: “I will aim to lose 45 pounds.” Even more specific—“45 pounds before next year.” As we all know, the road to weight-loss failure is paved with good intentions. It takes more than good intentions to achieve successful weight loss.
Next level: How will you actually do what you intend? This means having a plan, the kind of plan that lays out exactly or approximately how you will reach your goal. It can go like this, “I have every intention of losing a lot of weight. To do this I will have to—and here comes the plan—increase my motivation, settle some unsettling personal problems, pick a diet, make a list of dieting obstacles that have made for diet failure in the past, and so forth.”
The third level has to do with what makes the plan work.The plan makes your intentions work, but what makes the plan work? In a nutshell, the more specific the plan, the better the plan will work. For example: settle some unsettling personal problems can be specified in much greater detail. In it’s present form it’s too general, too vague. To make it more specific, very specific in fact, you’d have to specify as many of the variables as you can—such as, when, how, where, and why.
This third level of greater plan specificity is what makes the whole ball of wax work. With specifics like my biggest personal problem is my deteriorating relationship with my daughter, you would have to plan just how to repair the relationship, either in part or fully. You could start with the single biggest trigger for bad feelings between you and your daughter. If it’s her failure to observe her weekend curfew, start there. Plan how, when, and where you will talk with her about this and what you will say. Plan how to listen to her too. Review what she might say and how she might react emotionally, and then plan out how you could respond so that the friction between the two of you would be at a low.
Let’s review. Your intention. Your plan—which includes settling some unsettling personal problems. The importance of plan specificity. There you have it. The three levels that insure you against weight-loss failure.