Push Past that Plateau – Part 1
The definition of hitting a plateau is “to reach a state or level of little or no growth or decline, especially to stop increasing or progressing; remain at a stable level of achievement; level off” (Dictionary.com)
No one likes hitting plateaus, whether it is regarding their weight loss, fitness level, career, or pretty much anything else. People want to continue to progress and can completely sabotage everything when that progress seems to stop. I would like to reframe the plateauing issue and help you see a better way forward. These 4 steps can be applied to any plateau in your life, but our examples in this article will focus on weight loss or fitness plateaus. If you would like specifics for other plateaus, please reach out to me!
STEP 1: PAUSE
Literally visualize a geographical plateau. Look closely at this one . The speed at which you cross that plateau may determine your downfall. That’s right, by its very nature, a plateau has a cliff at the end. Do NOT walk off that cliff. Wherever you are along that plateau, PAUSE.
STEP 2: PRAISE
Look again at the definition but in a different frame this time.
“to reach a state or level of little or no growth or decline, especially to stop increasing or progressing; remain at a stable level of achievement; level off”
There are 28 words in that definition. Why do people choose to focus on the 8 negative ones? That’s right! You are now reading 20 of the 28 words. Leaving out those 8 words, what do you hear this definition saying? You have reached a state or level of NO DECLINE! You remain at a stable level of ACHIEVEMENT! You have begun or continued to LEVEL OFF. Offer up some praise that you are maintaining your current level. I could give you all the scientific reasons that your body needs some time on the plateau and how scientifically resetting your metabolism actually works and how it is uniquely based on your own weight set point, which is a combination of your genetics, environment, behaviors, and hormones. But that’s not the focus of my message today. Just focus on the steps. So, smile! Be happy about this! Many people get frustrated and step right off that plateau. Don’t be most people. Instead, PRAISE where you are.
Tomorrow we will work on the new plan. Today I want you to take some time to recognize the positives of your plateau. Grab a journal or a piece of paper and write down your accomplishments, no matter how small they may seem to you. And cover everything! Any and all positives should be noted.
Here are two questions to get you started.
What mountain did you climb?
What positives came from it? (Are you more confident? Are you communicating/relating better? Are you happier in your career? Did you lose weight? Did you get stronger? Did you learn a new skill? Get it all down – everything that comes to mind!)
Now I want you to visualize sitting down right in the middle of the plateau. Thank the plateau for being a place to rest, reflect, and re-examine the plan. Now thank your body for being wise and wonderful just the way it is! Promise your body you will take care of it, love it, and nurture it.
Look for Part 2 to learn some ways to shift your current plan so progress can resume!
I would love to hear how you reframe your plateau into praise! Please leave them in the comments below. And please share this information with your family and friends!