Planning, Precision and Patience is the 3P formula to building the foundation for a sustainable weight-loss strategy and finally ending the frustration of another new year’s resolution dieting disaster – and also the key to surviving Super Bowl Sunday.

In my last post, I spoke about the need to have a well-defined food plan. This is critical in helping circumvent spontaneous consumption and impulsive eating which are the primary pitfalls for so many of us – especially on one of the most food-centric days of the year coming up a week from Sunday.  Chart out a clear and concise plan of what you’re going to eat for the day, whether at home or going to a party. Which food groups you want and which ones to avoid.

Then, the next step is to be precise with that plan. Don’t take the keto approach and pound unlimited protein and end up packing in thousands of excess calories. Stick to robust but reasonable portions and make sure to include multiple healthy food groups. Set limits on exactly WHAT you will eat, and on HOW MUCH of it you will eat.  Be as precise as possible.

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I’ve also found that developing a mindset of precision instead of perfection is an emotionally healthy and sustainable approach.  The word perfect and the conception of perfection is often used as self-sabotage in our striving for sustained success in losing weight. “Who can be perfect, anyway?” we rationalize to ourselves, giving us the permission to consciously deviate from our food plan for the sake of a temporary pleasure. Instead, the productive attitude is precision.

We can – and often do – act with precision in those things that are priorities in our lives. For instance, one of our daughters has an acute nut allergy so we make sure that any food environment in which she may find herself is free from direct contact with cashews. She has developed her own awareness and diligence and doesn’t perceive it as perfection, but a healthy and necessary attentiveness. Her consistent attention to detail doesn’t create a neurotic or obsessive perfectionism – just a mature prioritization with her food choices.

So too with us. The more precise we are with are plan, the more results we’ll see and the more we’ll seed the transformation in our relationship with food.

Precision is attainable and sustainable. Precision produces progress. Perfection begets paralysis and promotes failure. You don’t have to be perfect today, just precise.