You’ve been working on losing weight and it’s been going well. You’re starting to notice that your body is changing, your clothes are getting looser and you’re feeling excited. You know you’ve been putting in the effort and so you’re feeling really proud of what you’ve achieved so far.
While you still have some work to do before you reach your goals, you’re starting to feel that maybe you don’t have to work so hard any more. After all, you’ve got some great results and surely now you’re on a roll it won’t be so hard to keep going.
But mini-quitting isn’t the way you’ll reach your goals.
What is mini-quitting?
We all know what quitting means — throwing in the towel and giving up completely. But what about mini-quitting?
Mini-quitting isn’t full-blown quitting. Instead, it’s taking your foot off the pedal, hoping that you can continue to coast along, without putting in as much effort into your weight loss as you have been doing.
Why you mini-quit?
Mini-quitting is born from complacency.
When you first start on your weight loss journey you’re highly motivated to lose weight. This is because you’re in a certain amount of pain and you’re willing to take action to relieve that pain. However, as you lose the weight your pain lessens, and so you no longer have a driving reason to keep taking as much action as you have been.
This is called being complacent and it’s the start of a slippery slope back to where you came from. To fully understand how dangerous it is to become complacent, read our blog “But I’m happy”: Why being complacent will ruin your whole life, not just your weight loss.
What are the signs of mini-quitting?
It’s easy to start mini-quitting without realising that’s what you’re doing. Often it involves making excuses for engaging in, or avoiding certain behaviours. Signs of mini-quitting include:
- Starting to stay up late even though you have an early training session the next day
- Skipping your meal preps
- Buying more takeaway food than usual because you are skipping your meal preps
- Slipping back into drinking too much
- Skipping your workout because you’re not prioritising them.
- Putting off the things you know you need to do to lose weight
- Falling back into your binge habits.
- Skipping your walks because you can’t be bothered
- Telling yourself that it doesn’t matter if you don’t reach your goal
- No longer making yourself accountable
- Not sticking to the boundaries you’ve set in order to lose weight
- Eating the same food over and over, and not making an effort to make food interesting
- Not putting your best efforts into your training sessions
- Thinking that it’s not as important to work on your habits as it was in the beginning
- Using work, family, injuries or even hormones as an excuse why you can’t do things.
Of course there’s nothing wrong with resting on the couch, enjoying takeaway, or even having a few drinks with friends. However, these things must be part of your structured plan. If they’re not, or they’ve started to ‘sneak in’ to your week, you may be mini-quitting.
What happens when you mini-quit?
While mini-quitting doesn’t involve totally giving up or throwing in the towel, the effects can be just as devastating. The only difference is, it will take you longer to see how it impacts your weight when you mini-quit.
Whether you realise it or not, your actions — even the smallest ones — have consequences. That’s because whatever you do compounds over time. The law of compounding can work for you, or against you.
If you continually take actions, even small actions that will help you lose weight, these will add up and compound to big results that will lead to weight loss. Similarly, if you start mini-quitting, this will compound and snowball the other way.
For example, it might not sound like a big deal to drink one glass of wine with dinner every night, but one extra glass of wine every night adds up to 365 extra glasses of wine over the year. And this will definitely have an impact on your weight.
Imagine the effects of mini-quitting in a number of ways over the year.
To truly understand the power of compounding and how it snowballs into results, read our blog The snowball effect: Why small things add up to big weight loss.
How can you stop mini-quitting?
Develop a strong why
Having a strong reason to make a lifestyle change to lose weight will help prevent complacency and mini-quitting. We call this your WHY. Your WHY should go beyond just losing weight for the sake of temporary alleviating pain, and should help you keep progressing and moving forward even when motivation is low. To find out how to develop yours and why it’s so important, read our blog Find your WHY to lose weight.
Stop relying on willpower
In the initial stages of weight loss, a lot of people rely on willpower, especially if they have a diet mindset. The problem with this is that willpower is only a short-term measure. There is only so much willpower available and once it’s gone, it’s gone. This can make it hard to stick with a weight loss plan, which can lead to mini-quitting. To fully understand why willpower doesn’t work, read our blog Weight loss motivation: why willpower doesn’t work.
Build your habits
Instead of relying on willpower, which comes and goes, you’re much better off changing your habits. Weight loss is never about food and exercise. It comes down to your habits — why you do what you do. If you have strong habits around weekly food prep, for example, you’ll get it done even if you don’t feel like it. Similarly, if you have a strong walking habit, you’ll get it done without the excuses, even if you’re not motivated to do it.
No one feels like doing what they need to do to lose weight all the time. But those who are successful are those who are consistent with their efforts. And the ones who are most consistent are the ones who have the best habits.
Make yourself accountable
A sure-fire way to ensure you don’t mini-quit is to make yourself accountable. Anyone can start exercising and eating healthy food, but sticking with it when things are hard or you can’t be bothered is hard. Making yourself accountable ensures that you stay on track to do what you need to do even if you don’t feel like it, instead of picking and choosing what you want to do.
Work with a coach
When you work with a coach, who keeps you accountable you’ll speed up your results even more. This is because a coach will be able to provide you with the necessary action steps you need to take, in order to progress and get the results you’re after. This removes the guesswork and the complacency around your actions (it’s often tempting to choose the easy things) and will reduce the likelihood of you mini-quitting.
Stop being complacent
Mini-quitting or being complacent may feel comfortable but it’s the quickest way to slip backwards. This is because you can still tell yourself that you haven’t fully quit, and hide behind the fact that you’re still doing some things that will help you lose weight. But remember, if you’re not progressing forwards, you’re actually going backwards.
If you’ve had trouble losing weight and sticking with it, maybe you need help with mini-quitting. Through our Diet Antidote Transformation System (DATS™️) — the Not-diet diet for people who are sick of diets and want more than a good body — we can help you stop being complacent and provide the right environment you need to help you reach your weight loss goals.
Through our program we will give you specific, personalised action steps to help you stay the course and do the things that will lead to long-term weight loss. We also provide you with the right amount of structure and accountability, which means you’ll always know what you need to do, when you need to do it, and you’ll have the accountability to make it happen. We also focus on habit change, which means that we’ll help you build the right habits that will reduce mini-quitting in your life.
DATSTM will give you the knowledge, systems, tools and skills to help you deal with any situation, so you’ll never need to rely on willpower or motivation in order to lose weight.
Our online and face-to-face Diet Antidote Transformation System is for those people who are ready to change. However, if you’re not ready to commit to our DATS program, get a head start with our entry-level myPersonalised eCoaching program, our state-of-the-art 6-week program designed to help you bridge the gap between diets, exercise and long-term results. Customised for you to reach your personal goals, build healthy habits around mindset, discipline, nutrition and exercise that stick, and transform your life. You get 12-months’ worth of content compressed into 6 weeks, complete with worksheets, personalised action steps and resources. You also have lifetime access so you can learn at your own pace, and revisit any lessons you need to.