Your brain is an organ capable of amazing change! Your thoughts can actually change the structure of your neural pathways.
The concept in neuroscience called neuroplasticity demonstrates that the brain alters itself every time we learn something new.
Our nerve cells are specially arranged by what we learn, what we remember, what we experience, what we feel, and what we envision.
You can use neuroplasticity to your advantage to make weight loss easier.
Dr. Joe Dispenza explains how we can engage our brains to make lasting change.
He holds a Bachelor of Science degree and is a Doctor of Chiropractic. His post graduate training includes the fields of neuroscience and neuroplasticity, quantitative electroencephalogram (QEEG) measurements, epigenetics, mind-body medicine, and brain/heart coherence.
His interest lies in demystifying the mysterious so that people have all the tools within their reach to make measurable changes in their lives.
Your 100 billion brain cells are always communicating with the rest of your body.
If you learn even one new piece of information today,your brain cells will make new connections within the network of your nervous system. In other words, when we really change our mind, the brain changes. That’s when we can affect permanent, lasting change.
When you take the time to intentionally imagine a new reality, like focusing on your weight loss goal, eating whole foods, exercising daily, etc., your brain is actually rewiring itself to your dreams and desires. Your body is being reconditioned in order to prepare itself for that new event.
So you can see why mentally rehearsing, imagining what you are going to do, what it would be like to experience that transformation on a daily basis creates internal changes to help you achieve your goals.
If you really want to make change stick, here’s a summary of some of Dr. Dispenza recommendations for you.
Write a clear and simple resolution statement. This tells your brain you’re serious about change.
Make sure your mission statement creates a positive feeling for you.
Avoid phrasing it in negative words such as ‘not’. Make your resolution specific. Instead of just saying you want to eat healthier, say, “I will eat a fresh healthy salad once a day so that my waistline shrinks.”
Your intention is your mental compass. The clearer your vision and intention, the better you know where you are going and how to get there becomes easier too.
2. Sponsoring Thoughts
List out five strong reasons about why you want to change. This is the biggest secret to making change stick.
You should feel passionate about the change you want. Again, be specific. For example, one reason you want to lose weight could be to learn to play pickle ball so you can have fun with your husband and stay energized on the court.
3. Review, Rewind, Prime
Create a plan, then review your action steps daily.
To get yourself in the right state of mind, when you wake up in the morning, review your desired specific behaviors for the day.
When you go to bed at night, review the day to see if you stayed in alignment with those behaviors. Think about what you will do tomorrow to keep working toward your goal.
This exercise literally sets up your day so that you stay conscious and focused on the change you want. When review and plan at night, it sets you up for success the following day.
If you imagine yourself making the necessary decisions for that next day, you will begin to prime your brain to automatically follow your intentions.
Mental rehearsal can install the neurological circuits in place to use when making your changes..
For instance, use review questions like: “What do I have to do to get there?” Write down the steps. “When do I need to have those steps taken?” Decide what steps you can take this day or even right now.
Review and remind yourself of the entire plan, and then take the first step.
Think of this as reviewing your map on your journey to change. The more you do it, the easier it is to get to your destination.
4. Align Your Behavior to Match Your Intention
Hold yourself accountable by demonstrating change throughout your entire day.
One of the hardest parts of breaking a habit is to avoid or stop making the same choices you made days, weeks, or months ago.
When you intentionally decide what you are not going to do that behavior, it will help keep you on task.
The biggest reason most people fall short of their vision relates to giving into familiar feelings. Intentionally decide that when those feelings, cravings, and bodily urges come up during your day, you are not going to give in to them. You will not ignore them either.
You will recognized and allow them. Sit with them but not respond to them. This is when you take your ‘new you’ for a test drive.
Your daily goals will always be in alignment with your ongoing intention.
Think of this step as a small destination or town you arrive at along your journey.
5. Track Your Changes
Create a reward system for yourself.
You can create a chart that you can see or review daily. Check off your wins. You will begin to make your discipline and changes a new habit.
At the same time, you’ll be building a new feeling of self-esteem, confidence, and belief that you actually are doing it.
If one day on your journey you deviate from your plan, make the choice to get back into your routine the very next day and forgive yourself. Extend grace, compassion and encouragement to yourself.
6. Come Out of Your Resting State—Change Your Energy
Change can be uncomfortable.
When we are in the midst of change, it feels unnatural, unfamiliar, and uncertain because we are no longer ‘being’ the same person.
We have entered the land of the unknown.
We are changing how we think, how we act, and how we feel.
Therefore, each day when you begin, you must lift yourself into a new state of being and raise your energy.
Questions like—How would I have to ‘be’ today to master my day? or How would I feel in my future when I am this person?
Just remember that you can’t get up today as the same person who climbed into bed last night. You must make the shift into a new state of being and live from this level of energy. Even if it is a small, incremental shift, it’s still taking you closer to your goal.
Get excited that you can shift old habits and build new ones just by practicing thinking about them.
7. Cue Your Environment
There is nothing more satisfying than to have little reminders in your life to keep you on track.
Place pictures, notes, word phrases, and/or vision boards where you can see them daily, such as at your desk, on the refrigerator, or pasted to the bathroom mirror.
You can listen to motivational podcasts, books, or inspirational music while you exercise or do chores. These will keep you on task by reminding you that what you are doing is important.
The more you stay conscious of your future, the more inspired you will be to overcome your present reality.
Your thinking can break through your personal limits and make your weight loss journey easier.
There is a lot you can do to help make change stick when you learn how to manage your thoughts. True transformation of your relationship with food, your body and your weight is possible for you!
This exploration can help you reach your weight loss goals with a lot less stress and drama.
It’s totally possible to make 2022 your year to create the healthiest you. No matter your age, stage or past disappointments, it’s Never Too Late to begin.
Jump start your fresh start. A year from now you will thank yourself you reached out to me today.
I’m looking forward to meeting you soon.
It’s Never Too Late to make your weight loss journey easier. Let’s go!
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