You work hard at work so you can be rewarded with a big salary, but what about in your personal life? If you are like most women you often make food you reward, or in some cases your relief! You packed up all your summer clothes and tidied up your house so you reward yourself with a big glass of Cabernet, or your favourite chocolates. You worked, hard, so you deserve it....right? Before you know it you are rewarding everything you do, and you've gained 5 pounds!
Learning how to reward yourself so that you feel satisfied, but don't overdo it, is hard. Here are some tips to help you curb your bad habits, so rewards end up making you feel good and pampered.
Know what you’re rewarding
Before you establish your perk system, you have to decide what behaviour you’re reinforcing. Just as you want to be specific when setting goals, you want to be detailed in how you’ll congratulate yourself for meeting them. Are you going to treat yourself when you’ve eaten healthy for a few days or when you’ve dropped 5 pounds? Choose bigger payoffs for more challenging accomplishments such as losing 40 pounds, dropping 10 percent of your body fat, or lowering your cholesterol by 20 points. Have smaller, stick-with-it bonuses in mind for days when you need just a little pick-me-up to keep going.
Write down rewards on the calendar
We’ve encouraged you all along to log your goals as well as what you’re eating and doing for exercise. Now look at your calendar and set “treat” days ahead of time. Then keep a list of perks you’ll dole out as you meet your goals or make it through tough tests of your newfound resolve.
Know your motivators
Choose things you’re excited to work for, like a massage or pedicure, a night out with friends, or new clothes. One caveat: Never use food as a reward. It can give a bad habit -emotional eating- traction and thwart your progress.