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  • Wendy Lee Johnson

Everything You Do Moves the Needle

Updated: Feb 15

When your weight has plateaued and your progress seems undetectable, it’s time to remember the small and simple things that are bringing your change.


Big Results

Of course you want big results, especially at the scale. You are frustrated when you have eaten well for 4 days with no noticeable shifts. Quickly the lower brain starts in on it’s age-old rant, probably something like:

  • This isn't worth it

  • All that sacrifice for nothing

  • Losing weight is impossible


It’s the brains job to harass and discourage you. It plants seeds of doubt so that instead of the slow and steady foot path to well-being, it can keep you on the freeway of instant gratification and false pleasure. When my brain is going ham on me, I like to switch it up with the thought, “I hear you, brain,” to remind myself that my brain is just doing its job and I can hear it and still stick with what I have planned. Nothing has gone wrong.


Early this morning I was getting ready to go to a Barre class and my lower brain was working all the angles:

  • It’s 24 degrees outside

  • You can catch a workout later today

  • You could make breakfast for your guests instead

  • You don’t know anyone at class, this could be awkward

  • Missing one class is no big deal

I just kept repeating my usual, "I hear you brain, and we are still going." The win here is not the workout. The win is that I planned last night to go to this morning’s class and this morning I honored my plan. I am becoming the gal that does what she says she will. This is totally moving my needle.


Valuing the small shifts

At first glance, the small shifts seem insignificant. Probably you aren’t even taking notice of them. You are so focused on the "bigs" and the needle on the scale you don’t even notice that you left a couple bites of dinner on your plate or declined a second piece of cake.


I used to be obsessed with chocolate and peanut butter. Frequently I would slip into the pantry and scoop up some crunchy peanut butter on a spoon, then dip it into the chip bag and pop the whole thing in my mouth. I loved letting it melt in my mouth, so yummy. I started this as a teenager and have been doing it for 4 decades . It's only been in this last year that this habit, which was roughly 5 times a week, dropped to only a couple times a week. This, to me, is unbelievable. It's like magic. The amazing part is that now I don’t even think peanut butter and chocolate chips. How did this magic happen? Not over night, I can assure you. It took time and building these small wins of showing up, making a plan for myself and keeping commitments.


What if all of your significant changes were slow, but permanent?Would it be worth it?

Big Wins are Built From Small Wins

My weight loss usually happens at about a half pound per week. Kinda slow. Right now, I am working on a 10 pound loss. That means I am looking at loosing a half a pound, 20 times. Hmmmm, 5ish months, maybe longer...really? Yes, really. I am totally in this for the long haul. The best part of weight loss for me, isn’t the actual needle on the scale, but rather all the ways I am learning to care for myself and have my back. These are the small wins that are moving the needle to my new identity.


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