Weight loss can make smart people look silly, confound roomfuls of award-winning scientists, and baffle the rest of us, who are otherwise competent and brilliant in our own right. Somehow the mysterious answers still elude us.
Part of the mystery and frustration could be that we often look at the whole dieting question backwards. There are a number of assumptions and beliefs we often hold that are actually the opposite of what’s really true. However, there are some paradoxes (statements that seem contradictory but are actually true) that you should hold onto. Putting these to use will help you see progress and, more importantly, gain confidence.
There are 9 Goal Achievement Paradoxes that you can apply to your weight loss goals, or any part of your life. Here are the last three. (You can read about Paradoxes 1-3, and Paradoxes 4-6 first.) Perhaps they can lend some insight for how to solve some puzzles in your own life:
PARADOX 7: There is such a thing as a good mistake.
A mistake, or a step back, doesn't have to be a negative thing. It depends on what you do with it. You can mope and stress about it, cutting back your efforts so you don’t "fail" again…
Or, you can move past a mistake with a little more insight and wisdom to plan for a better future—a future where that mistake doesn’t happen again. This is how you learn and grow. Mistakes force you to evaluate your actions, change the way you're going about your business, and improve. Why else would you do any of these things?
Mistakes are part of the natural growth process, nearly as important—definitely more educational—than success. Just keep it in perspective. Thomas Edison liked to say that he knew only one way to make a light bulb, but discovered thousands of ways not to.
Without mistakes, you may become competent in a skill, but you'd never master it. Without heeding the lessons that mistakes teach, you're doomed to repeat them again.
PARADOX 8: Dreaming can give you practical results.
There's no reason your wishes can't become goals. The biggest contribution you can make to the world will always come from something you're passionate about.
It's true that society is interested in the practical, the useful, the realistic. That's fine. It's also true that the best results—the outcomes with the most practical impact— happened because someone thought "what if." (And then he worked his tail off to make it reality.)