Before I teach you how to get over those annoyingly persistent afternoon and relentless nighttime cravings, I’m going to teach you how to swim.
“Why in the world would learning how to swim benefit me?” you wonder.
Let’s say we don’t know how to swim and we decide it’s finally time to learn. We want to overcome our fear of water. Bravo! That takes a lot of courage.
So, we find a local gym or pool club. Maybe there’s even a public pool that we weren’t aware of.
Then, we look online to find a swim instructor. After plenty of wrong numbers, we find someone who’s really passionate about helping people learn how to swim with a successful track record. Boom! We’re getting somewhere.
Next, we need to get the gear! We look online and find a bathing suit. Ohh, there’s one we like. Eh, we don’t really like it, after all. We go to another website…
We find the bathing suit. Ugh, it’s not in stock!
After spending three hours searching we finally find the one!
What about goggles? Can’t swim without goggles!
The big day comes. It’s the day of our first lesson.
Uh oh. We realize that we don’t have any shoes to wear by the pool! Whoops! We can’t swim without shoes to wear around the pool!
So we cancel and reschedule.
We’ve done everything we could possibly do BUT swim.
Sometimes, no matter what, we just gotta jump in the pool.
It’s like the monster I always talk about. Once we attack it, it’s not so bad. The monster is never as scary as it seems.
We just need that push.
But we gotta jump in…
When we’re faced with an intense craving, we’re usually only thinking about THAT craving. We’re not thinking about anything else. And because of that — we can’t imagine our life without giving into those cravings.
Here’s the challenge: many times, we think about what life would be like without EVER having that mid-afternoon or nighttime snack. We can’t imagine it!
(You might not realize it but it’s subconscious. And because we can’t imagine our life without our “usual” mid-afternoon snack or dessert, we think, “Screw it. Why bother? I DESERVE this and I’m entitled to this because I work hard.” Why do we do this? Because the discomfort in that moment is too great. So we have to rationalize it away.)
You’re a swimmer and someone is terrified of jumping in the pool. YOU know how much fun it is but they don’t.
There is a really fun amusement park ride that YOU know is fun but the person you’re with is scared.
You’re eating this really weird looking food that’s absolutely delicious. But the person you’re with is grossed out, and doesn’t want to try it.
What would you say?
Probably something along the lines of, “Just try it once. Everything will be okay. What’s the worst that can happen?”
What I’m suggesting is that if you want to break that mid-day or nighttime snacking habit — focus only on not having it TODAY. Don’t focus on tomorrow. Don’t focus on next week. Just focus on today. Because once we go through the afternoon or evening WITHOUT that snack or dessert, we realize it’s actually doable, and not nearly as bad as we thought it would be.
But again, we can’t know that unless we “just jump in” and try it once.
I’ll be right here waiting with a huge comfy towel for you.
The creator of “Boardwalk Empire” credits my mom for inspiring him. He mentioned her in the NY Daily News the other day. Check it out here. It’s a pretty cool story.