You Don’t Have to (re)Start Diet & Lifestyle Changes on a Monday!
It’s pretty common for most of us to link the start of a health kick to the start of a week (or month or year!) And, within the context of the Autoimmune Protocol, this applies whether you’re just starting out on the elimination phase for the very first time, or if this is the 308th time you’ve decided to ‘reset’ or tweak your approach.
“Wednesdays are like Mondays in the middle of the week!” – Lee Fox Williams
Guess what? The latest AIP Reset kicks off TODAY! And, it’s NOT a Monday!
Here’s the thing – you can start your new health protocol on ANY day of the week. Even a Wednesday!
I’m sure you’re already well versed in the idea of a fresh start, or ‘reset’. You’ve probably been doing them all your life, even.
The idea of a fresh start is all about separating your past performance with your future performance. A reset is no different – it’s a way of drawing a line in the sand for the way forward on your personal AIP caper.
And, while there is absolutely no law that states you must begin fresh starts on a Monday, there is some evidence that suggests that you may be better at tackling your health goals when you begin them on what is known in the psychology trade as temporal landmarks. This is where you create a mental accounting period; one where your brain separates what has gone before and – hopefully – also motivates you to aspire to greater things.
The technical term for this phenomenon is the fresh start effect. When it comes to your AIP framework, the catalyst to creating a fresh start or a reset is often the result of some instance of failure or sub-par past performance, like AIP creepage. And, given we now know just how important mindset is in this quest to improve your health, as a kind of mental resetting, it’s a strategy that can be helpful in bouncing back from when you stray from your protocol.
So, the next time you need to reset your AIP caper, or even when you are just establishing some new goals, here are a few of my favourite tactics to help you to really maximise your energy and focus.
Keep a food and mood journal so you know where you stand
If you are not already in the habit of tracking your progress, the tool that is pivotal to understanding just what is serving you over time is your food and mood diary. Creating a habit of tracking your diet and lifestyle experiences is the best way to understand patterns and trends unique to you. This applies to the elimination phase, the reintroduction phase and beyond.
If you don’t track your performance, you won’t have a clear understanding of where you sit currently and the direction you’re heading. Relying on gut feelings here won’t work. Unlike your intuition or feelings, performance metrics don’t lie.
This is the part of the AIP caper that many people overlook. If this is a challenge for you, one reason you’re likely failing to keep up with your own food and mood journal is that they can be a little tedious, and they can sometimes give you a level of brutal honesty that may even make you feel uncomfortable. But they are well worth it.
Critically assess your progress
After you track, you need to critically assess. It is so important to regularly set aside time to analyse your results. If you don’t, there is little point in undertaking all that effort.
When you think critically, you
- open your mind up to question your own thinking
- develop a willingness to be wrong
- put logic before any personal bias
- question, and even embrace, thinking other than your own
- recognise when there are contradictions
Make a practice of setting regular goals to help you stay motivated
This AIP framework is a big, hairy thing. It takes work. And, it evolves over time (I challenge anyone who lives an AIP way of life to tell me they approach their diet and lifestyle changes the same way now as they did when they started out)
One way to personalise the protocol is to break it down into manageable chunks. Instead of trying to do it all at once, give yourself a break and make small, incremental changes over time. You’re human!
In my AIP Mentorship and AIP Reset programs, we spend time at the beginning of the month identifying priorities and setting goals. It’s a great way to really hone in on what’s important for you at any given time.
If you’d like some help in working out just how to identify your priorities and set measurable goals, check out my Practical Goal Setting Video eCourse.
Buddy up with a friend or join AIP Reset
You already know how much easier it is to stay on track when you are feeling supported. Accountability is a great motivator!
Find yourself an AIP accountability partner or join a group to encourage, inform and include you.
If you’re serious about getting your head (back) in the game and making your AIP way of life a priority, AIP Reset was created for you – a 30-day program dedicated to helping you to (re)find your AIP groove when life events have tripped you up. It’s just the ticket if you need to recalibrate your AIP way of life by taking things back to basics.
If you’re looking for a community of like-minded AIPers, people who are on a similar path to you, this is the program for you. Come and join AIP Reset!