Do you Have the Burning Desire to Lose Weight or Reach any Goal?
by Mike Matthews
- Do you have a Burning Desire? -
Do you have a burning desire to lose weight and reduce your body fat to 10%?
Do you have a burning desire to get a flat, well-toned midsection?
Do you have a burning desire to increase your net worth to $500,000?
Do you have a burning desire to improve your personal relationships?
Do you have a burning desire to start a business next year?
Do you have a burning desire to reduce your credit card debt?
The key phrase is "Do you have a burning desire to...". We all have hopes, dreams, wants and wishes. Do you have a 'Burning Desire' to make the right choices on a daily basis and take positive action steps toward your goals?
Let's start with a common goal of reducing body fat or losing weight. While losing weight is a more common goal, reducing body fat to your body's optimum level is the better route to take. For this illustration, imagine you had a personal goal of losing 10 lbs in 30 days. Because you're smart, you know that losing weight can be accomplished by taking in fewer calories than you burn. This is a law of nature and makes logical sense. Even though we are aware of this basic principle, losing weight continues to be a difficult goal for many people to accomplish. Now the question; do you really have a 'Burning Desire' to lose 10 lbs in 30 days? If you're like many, your answer is "...yes, I have a desire to lose weight..." but in reality you don't have a 'Burning Desire'.
To further illustrate our day-to-day choices and the difference between a desire and a 'Burning Desire' let's pretend that you are two days into your diet and you're at your favorite hamburger restaurant for your usual lunch. What are you going to choose from the menu? What choice are you going to make?
Will it be the usual double cheeseburger, large fries and a soft drink?
Will it be a double cheeseburger, small fries and a small soft drink?
Will it be a single burger, no small fries and a diet soft drink?
Will it be a burger (no bun), small salad (light dressing) and water?
Will you leave your favorite hamburger restaurant and find a different place to eat?
Most will order the usual lunch or might only cut down slightly. You might even justify it by convincing yourself that later in the day you'll eat less, you'll exercise more at the gym or you need all this food because you are 'starving'. By choosing to order the usual lunch, you've made a choice to take action towards your goal of losing weight. Let me repeat in a slightly different way. By selecting the usual lunch, you have made a (wrong) choice to take (a negative) action towards your goal of losing weight. Every minute of every day you have the power, potential and intellect to make good choices that will help direct you to take positive actions towards meeting your goals. Will you succumb to a need for immediate gratification or can you delay it for a short period with your eye on the prize, of a larger, more gratifying long-term goal.
Was choosing the usual lunch the right choice for you to meet your goal of losing weight? It probably wasn't the best choice, but only you can make the decision to make the right choice. Your decision to eat a high calorie lunch was probably based on a short-term craving and the need for immediate gratification. After the meal, you've met your short-term craving but you've moved farther away from your long-term goal of losing 10 lbs. You need to be aware that your day-to-day choices are often based on a superficial need to satisfy your immediate gratification. When short-term wins over long-term, it shows that your immediate gratification cravings have registered more votes in your brain. Your objective
is to move the pendulum; make your long-term goals register more votes so you will automatically start taking more consistent and positive action steps. You need to create a 'Burning Desire' to make long-term win over short-term.
Stop reading and take your first positive action step to create a 'Burning Desire'. You can apply this technique to any goal.
1. List at least 6 reasons why you want to attain a weight loss goal (or any other goal). List both the positive reasons (I want to look good for the Caribbean vacation) and the negative reasons (I can't fit into my pants). Positive reasons are "What will I get if I attain this goal". Negative reasons are "What will happen if I don't attain this goal".
2. Next to each reason you listed above, write a short, visual description of that reason. It's important that you visualize your reasons. If one of your reasons is "...I can't fit into these pants...", describe this visualization as a picture with your stomach hanging over the edge of your belt or waistband. Make sure you complete this visualization description for each reason. As you go through this visualization process you may start thinking of more reasons - go ahead jot them down on your list.
3. Take 10-15 minutes and read your 6 (or more) reasons along with your visualization descriptions. Which one or two reasons trigger the most emotionally energized response?
4. Take the top 1,2 or 3 emotionally energized reasons, write them down on a business card size piece of paper and place them in your wallet, purse, desk and/or car. For the next 3-5 days, take out this card and read the reasons and the visualization description out loud.
5. By the end of the 3-5 days, if you still get emotionally energized and excited; congratulations, you now have created your own 'Burning Desire'.
What if this didn't work and you're not emotionally excited - what if you didn't create a 'Burning Desire'. Your current goal has reverted back to a wish, a want, a dream or a hope. At this stage you have a few options.
First, you should go back to step #1 and try this exercise again. Often during the first attempts, you may not have put enough time or energy into the process. Right now is the time to change for the better - take a positive action step and give it another chance.
Second, if you've tried this exercise or other techniques and still can't seem to create a 'Burning Desire', than you may need to pick another goal, abandon the goal or change the goal. Changing the goal is not giving up; changing the goal is often one of the best ways to get yourself re-energized, motivated and excited about moving forward.
By taking these 5 steps to create a 'Burning Desire' for each one of your goals (large or small), you will make your goals much more attainable, you will start to consistently meet more of your goals and you will have more fun along the path to success.
This technique can be used in other areas of your life such as your business (career), your personal finances and your relationships. Other chapters in this book will provide the details on how to use this technique to succeed with more of your personal goals.
Author's Personal Note: I have successfully used this technique in the area of weight loss and have lost 10 lbs (in 45 days), reduced my body fat by 3% and dropped from a 35-inch waist to a 32-inch waist. What was my 'Burning Desire'? I had about seven of them, but two created the most passion and drive.
First, was when my youngest son commented about how big my stomach was getting and that I looked out of shape. This comment was my negative reason that drove me to make a change. If I didn't attain this goal, I would continue to hear these comments .
Second, I had a closet full of size 32 pants and was ready to go out a buy more tight-fitting 34 size pants. Since I personally don't like (despise) spending money on clothes, I created a visualization of all the money I would save by not having to buy another 3-4 pairs of pants. If I did attain this goal, I would have another $150 to do what I love most - invest.
My personal visualization for the first reason was a flat stomach instead of the love handles and no 'fat' comments from my son.
My visualization for the second reason was seeing $150 invested in 3 shares of a blue chip stock on my portfolio statement, instead of pants hanging in my closet.
While my personal visualizations might not get you motivated, these visualizations created enough push, motivation and drive for me to change my dietary habits and eat right (not necessarily less) and exercise more often. Remember, each of you will have your own personal visualizations that will get you to take action.
It was the first time in my 40+ years that I've ever wanted to lose weight and while it was difficult to make these dietary and exercise changes; I sacrificed my short-term immediate gratification needs for the benefit and success of my long-term weight loss goal. Not only did I receive gratification from meeting my weight loss goal, but I received even more gratification by knowing that I could make the appropriate day-to-day choices to minimize my short-term immediate gratification needs to meet a long-term, more gratifying goal. It was worth the efforts.
It's time for You to take Action!
What are you going to do right now to take one positive action step towards meeting one of your personal goals? To get the momentum moving in your favor, you need to take immediate action. After reading this article, take the next 30 minutes to complete this 5-step process for one of your goals? You don't have 30 minutes, take 5 minutes to start the process. The key is to take Action. You owe it to yourself to be successful and one key component for making your personal goals attainable, is to create your own personal 'Burning Desire'. Start it now!
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NOTE: This article is one of the component parts of the 9-step WTA3 program contained in the ebook titled "The Action Path -Your Key to Success!" due out in 2005 at
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