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The Scarlet Pimpernel Becomes a Jedi


Teancum

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To succeed in this challenge, I will need the peace and serenity of a Jedi, learning to control my emotions and passions and become one with the force.

 

To set the scene, I have an exciting announcement! Mrs. Pimpernel and I just had our second baby!

 

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This means a sharp decrease in sleep and increase in stress, which is a recipe for diet disaster. However, last challenge I realized that I really need to focus on my diet, and I'm sticking to that. So my big goal for this challenge is:

 

Peace/Serenity - No food with added sugar for the full 5 weeks

I've come to realize I really do have a sugar addiction that I need to break, and I think the best way to do that is going cold turkey. I also want to use this as a chance to develop discipline by controlling my cravings and hunger. There are a few clarifications to the rules:

  • I'm going to go ahead and assume all fast food has added sugar, so will also be avoiding that this challenge. This past few days I did have some out of necessity due to hospital/baby time, but I didn't have any overtly sweet things.
  • Meals that are made by my wife or others that are bringing us dinners for a couple days are fair game so long as they are not overtly sweet, and no desserts. Meals that I make will have no sugar added to them, but I'm not going to make a separate meal at this point just because of some brown sugar in the pineapple sauce or something.
  • I'm allowing a little bit of honey for homemade sauces/dressings as needed. This will be used rarely, except for the occasional salad dressing or maybe stir-fry sauce. I justify this because I know it'll be a lot less sugar than any commercially available sauces/dressings.

 

I will also be continuing 2 goals from my last challenge:

 

Knowledge - Complete at least one NFA mindset challenge per week

As part of my respawn, I'm going through all the modules again, a little more slowly and seriously

 

Harmony - Track Actions Per Day (APD), and beat last month's average of 5.66

Tracking APD has really helped me make more healthy choices. It overlaps a bit with my other goals, but just provides a little extra encouragement

 

You might note there is no specific activity goal this challenge. That is because I think the no sugar diet will take a lot of mental energy to do right, and that is where I need to focus, and also because I really want to focus on activity that I enjoy, rather than exercising because I feel like I have to. For this challenge, my mainstay will be doing activities for the mini-challenge, and doing some extra to increase my APD score.

 

I hope even with all the craziness of a new baby, I can be disciplined, control my stress/emotions, and find peace like a Jedi. May the force be with you!

 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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Yay congrats on the tiny one! 

 

I totally agree that scaling back the activity goal while you are beating the sugar beast is a fantastic idea. What about artificial sugars, I assume those are out as well?

 

For stir fry and sauces, if you are allowing yourself coconut sap, Coconut Aminos is the bomb! 

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9 hours ago, Grayspeed said:

Congrats on the tiny human!

 

8 hours ago, Manarelle said:

Congrats on the new little one! May the force be with you indeed. You got this!

 

1 hour ago, Jonesy said:

Yay congrats on the tiny one! 

 

I totally agree that scaling back the activity goal while you are beating the sugar beast is a fantastic idea. What about artificial sugars, I assume those are out as well?

 

For stir fry and sauces, if you are allowing yourself coconut sap, Coconut Aminos is the bomb! 

 

Thanks everyone! 

 

@Jonesy yes artificial sweeteners too. I've never really liked them anyway TBH. I've heard of coconut aminos but never seen them (granted I've never looked all too hard) is it sweet? Or more like soy sauce? 

 

Today was good - I avoided juice, doughnut holes, brownies, cookies and Nutella (the dangers of living in a house with a toddler and recently pregnant woman). However BACON BETRAYED ME!! I was all "bacon is bacon" then looked at the ingredients after I ate it and there is sugar in it!! Stupid empire! I'm sure I can find some sugar free kind, but I'm very annoyed. 

 

Another potential issue is while I'm at home I'm able to fill the sugar void with other things. Today that included veggies and some fruit which is good, but also tortilla chips... 

 

Finally, I have lara bars, which are made of dates, so technically no added sugar, but still like 25g of sugar. Then I have these protein bars that have only 1g of sugar (stevia), but it's technically added. So I'm torn, because they're handy for a quick top up when needed...  Thoughts? 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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It's supposed to be a whole30 substitute for soy sauce but I think it's more teriyaki sauce tasting but soy sauce consistency. So it does taste sweeter. 

 

For snacks or quick top offs - hard boiled eggs, nuts and you can also make your own lara bars if you have a food processor. They are super easy or you can try RXBars which I think have less sugar. Just need to check the ingredients. :) 

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2018: 1.18 l  2.18 l 3.18 l 4.18 l 5.18 l 6.18 l 7.18

2017: 1.17 I 2.17 I 3.17 I 4.17 I 5.17 l 6.17 l 7.17 l 8.17 I 9.17 l 10.17  

2016: 1.16 l 2.16 l DA v.1 l DA v.2 I DA v.2 Reloaded I DA v.3 I DA v.4 I 8.16 I 9.16 I DA v.5 I 11.16 

2012: 1 2013: 2 l 3 l 4 l 5 l 6 l 7 l 8 2014: 9 l 10 l Not Done Yet l Time to Conquer l  Conquering 

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9 hours ago, The Scarlet Pimpernel said:

Finally, I have lara bars, which are made of dates, so technically no added sugar, but still like 25g of sugar. Then I have these protein bars that have only 1g of sugar (stevia), but it's technically added. So I'm torn, because they're handy for a quick top up when needed...  Thoughts? 

 

Depends on your goal - stevia is technically a plant extract, buuuuuut so is sugar, really. Are you aiming for reducing sugar or staying "natural" more?

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3 hours ago, Manarelle said:

 

Depends on your goal - stevia is technically a plant extract, buuuuuut so is sugar, really. Are you aiming for reducing sugar or staying "natural" more?

 

That's what I've been thinking about, and I really think it's the sugar. Less processing is good too, but for right now it's the sugar. And in that case maybe I shouldn't be having either because they both taste quite sweet, and I think a part of me would still do it for the sugar, not just for a quick fill up. Really the reason I said "no added" is to allow for fruits and other "natural" sugars like in veggies and rice. 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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3 hours ago, The Scarlet Pimpernel said:

 

That's what I've been thinking about, and I really think it's the sugar. Less processing is good too, but for right now it's the sugar. And in that case maybe I shouldn't be having either because they both taste quite sweet, and I think a part of me would still do it for the sugar, not just for a quick fill up. Really the reason I said "no added" is to allow for fruits and other "natural" sugars like in veggies and rice. 

 

Sounds like you'd be trading out one addiction for another then. Probably best to eschew the stevia for now. Have you tried died pineapple in salads (or plain, but it's pretty sweet). SO DELICIOUS!

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So, I got some dried pineapple tonight to try (unsweetened)... And promptly ate the whole bag. So won't be doing that again haha. 

 

Otherwise jedi training today went well. No added sugar, made a delicious protein-ful breakfast, and got my wife McDonalds but didn't get anything for myself (quite a feat! But if I'm honest I did steal 4 of her fries).

 

I also did a full workout for the mini (by full workout I mean more than just one set like I normally do - a total of 50 reps each of jumping pull ups and straight leg raises!) 

 

APD for today was 9 so that's been going well too. Mindset has been somewhat on hold with all the new baby things, but I hope to make some batcave adjustments this week. 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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Awesome job resisting getting yourself fast food and getting in a full workout!

 

Dried pineapple is way too good. I always went with dried mango because I like sweet and tangy. :) If you are looking for something to lightly hit your sweet taste bud,  may I suggest Artisan Tropic Plantain Strips either the natural sweet or cinnamon ones. Nothing added to them it's just the plantain. I liked to make a trail mix out of them so I would eat less in a sitting (unsweetened coconut, cashews and the plantain chips). 

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1 hour ago, Jonesy said:

Awesome job resisting getting yourself fast food and getting in a full workout!

 

Dried pineapple is way too good. I always went with dried mango because I like sweet and tangy. :) If you are looking for something to lightly hit your sweet taste bud,  may I suggest Artisan Tropic Plantain Strips either the natural sweet or cinnamon ones. Nothing added to them it's just the plantain. I liked to make a trail mix out of them so I would eat less in a sitting (unsweetened coconut, cashews and the plantain chips). 

 

Yum that trail mix sounds good! 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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Oops, sorry about the pineapple. It's way too sweet for me to eat that much, didn't realize that might be a problem. 

 

That trail mix does sound delicious, would be a good filling snack without being too sweet. 

Manarelle the Level 55 Amazon Assassin

Gryffindarling and Sith Acolyte, somehow.

Challenges: 1-1011-2021-3031-4041-50, 51-60, Current

 

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25 minutes ago, Manarelle said:

Oops, sorry about the pineapple. It's way too sweet for me to eat that much, didn't realize that might be a problem. 

 

That trail mix does sound delicious, would be a good filling snack without being too sweet. 

 

Haha not your fault! And I learned something for going forward. I think a big part of the problem was I partly got it for compensation for not getting McDonalds, so I had an "I deserve this" attitude. 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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Today was not bad. I didn't get to do my batcave changes yet, but I read the module and hopefully tomorrow I'll be able to git'r done. 

 

My meals today were a bit carb-y but I didn't have any sugar. So far it actually hasn't been too terrible avoiding the stuff, but tonight I was getting some cravings I had to fight off. I think part of it was situational because I was up late watching tv which I haven't done in a while. 

 

My arms/shoulders hurt a bit from yesterday, which is good! I'm hoping to do more tomorrow sometime. 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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Zero week report:

 

tumblr_m5pcunxxng1rn1r9to1_500.gif

 

Jedi training has been going quite well. I have had no sweets all week and very limited added sugar (according to the exceptions outlined at the top). I WAS hoping it would show a bit more on the scale, but I'm not too perturbed by it. I think one of the problems is that I've been replacing the sugary things I'm eating with not-so healthy snacks (tortilla chips, popcorn, etc.). Although I will need to fix this part eventually, I'm trying to focus on one thing at a time and make it sustainable. And I think if I was eating sugar too I'd be eating even more, because I get into cycles of craving sweet, then salty, then sweet, etc.

 

I really haven't had too many sugar cravings, there were a few times where it's harder - mostly environmental: when I was up late watching TV, and when I was at my in-law's house. I really thought it would be worse, but it is only the first week, so I will continue observing the changes.

 

I still need to do some of my batcave changes, but some of the things I have in mind I'll need my wife on board, so I've been delaying a bit since we've been so busy with the baby. I think something that will help me complete that quest too is to nail down the HABITS that will affect my progress toward my goals, so I can make them easier or harder to do as needed.

 

APD has been going well, I got my average up again, now I just need to keep it there.

 

Although not an official part of the challenge, my mini challenge participation has also been going well! Gonna get me some cool Dwarf armour!!!

 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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Great job on avoiding the sugar.  Cutting out sugar does tend to make the body look for replacements.  I eat a lot of hard boiled eggs, bacon (I'm don't really care about sugar added to what I consider healthy foods as long as it isn't excessive).  I'm also big on salads when I'm trying to lose.  I add fruit like mandarin oranges and grapes to keep them interesting.

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4 hours ago, peelout said:

Great job on avoiding the sugar.  Cutting out sugar does tend to make the body look for replacements.  I eat a lot of hard boiled eggs, bacon (I'm don't really care about sugar added to what I consider healthy foods as long as it isn't excessive).  I'm also big on salads when I'm trying to lose.  I add fruit like mandarin oranges and grapes to keep them interesting.

 

Thank you!

 

Yeah I'm a salad fan. I seem to go in phases though, like I'll eat salads every day for a week and love it, and then I'll buy some more greens and not touch them until they're rotten :( it's always so disappointing when that happens 

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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No sweets all week?? That's pretty awesome!

 

11 hours ago, The Scarlet Pimpernel said:

Yeah I'm a salad fan. I seem to go in phases though, like I'll eat salads every day for a week and love it, and then I'll buy some more greens and not touch them until they're rotten :( it's always so disappointing when that happens 

 

 

I'll eat a salad if someone else makes it but If I make it out of my own ingredients/fridge, I usually don't like it. 

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2018: 1.18 l  2.18 l 3.18 l 4.18 l 5.18 l 6.18 l 7.18

2017: 1.17 I 2.17 I 3.17 I 4.17 I 5.17 l 6.17 l 7.17 l 8.17 I 9.17 l 10.17  

2016: 1.16 l 2.16 l DA v.1 l DA v.2 I DA v.2 Reloaded I DA v.3 I DA v.4 I 8.16 I 9.16 I DA v.5 I 11.16 

2012: 1 2013: 2 l 3 l 4 l 5 l 6 l 7 l 8 2014: 9 l 10 l Not Done Yet l Time to Conquer l  Conquering 

HFC for Life!

 

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Still fighting that sugar beast like...

 

giphy.gif

 

Things have been going well though. Cravings still aren't as bad as I thought they would be. Yesterday I made a fancy dinner for my wife for Valentine's, which was pretty good! I did partake in some sparkling apple juice and some home-made chocolate covered strawberries. However this was a conscious decision and I was in complete control, so I am happy with that. Before I would use special occasions as an excuse to go hog-wild on my eating, so I think even more important than not having any sugar at all is learning how to have a small amount when appropriate and not let it derail me. That's the long-term goal. So I'm very happy with that, and back at it today. I also asked my wife to not get me any valentine's candy, so that's good, and I haven't had any around the house.

 

I've been trying to make some batcave changes, but making 3 EACH for a positive and negative habit is a bit tough. So far I've reorganized my snack shelf so all the healthy snacks are on one shelf, and covered the others with a cardboard flap so I don't see them when I open the cupboard. I also reorganized the freezer to feature frozen meats, fruits, and veggies. I think the fridge is next. The big problem I always have with the fridge, is the veggies are supposed to go in the crisper drawers, which means they are out of sight and I forget about them and the rot :( Anyone have any good solutions to this?

 

APD has been good. Less yesterday, but I broke double digits on Monday, with 11! A combo of food choices, exercise, and batcave upgrades. I hope today will be another good one. The temperature has finally warmed up so I'd love to get outside if I can! Lots of studying to do though since my exams are the week I go back to school (next week)...

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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19 hours ago, The Scarlet Pimpernel said:

I think the fridge is next. The big problem I always have with the fridge, is the veggies are supposed to go in the crisper drawers, which means they are out of sight and I forget about them and the rot :( Anyone have any good solutions to this?

 

Could do this a couple ways. Could try to switch out the veggies for something else you like, so you get used to opening the crisper drawers, then eventually switch them back, or put a note on (or in) the fridge to look in the crisper. I've found crispers are really more like glorified drawers, since we use plastic bags to keep food fresh now. 

 

Grats on the V-day success! Restraint is tough, but it sounds like you're making significant strides in the sugar area. Keep it up!

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1 hour ago, Manarelle said:

 

Could do this a couple ways. Could try to switch out the veggies for something else you like, so you get used to opening the crisper drawers, then eventually switch them back, or put a note on (or in) the fridge to look in the crisper. I've found crispers are really more like glorified drawers, since we use plastic bags to keep food fresh now. 

 

Grats on the V-day success! Restraint is tough, but it sounds like you're making significant strides in the sugar area. Keep it up!

 

That's a good idea putting something else I go for in there... Maybe I'll try that. I'm not stuck on the idea that the veggies have to go in the drawers either, but my wife seems to think it makes a difference.

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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You've received lots of good advice and tasty snack ideas that I'm thinking of stealing :)  One trick for me when I was trying to kill my sugar craving (for me it's soda) is to cut out bread.  something about bread triggers my sweet tooth!  

 

How is your new tiny human?  I am currently fostering two tiny puppies.  I'm finding it very similar to when I had my twins 17 years ago...

 

giphy.gif

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11 hours ago, mom2sjm said:

How is your new tiny human?  I am currently fostering two tiny puppies.  I'm finding it very similar to when I had my twins 17 years ago...

 

Tiny human is good!! Sleep is definitely more interrupted than I'm used to, and we'll see how next week is when I'm back at school, but right now things are ok. 

 

I am a bit discouraged tonight though. I've still been able to stay away from sugar but it was hard tonight. Some friends brought us some really yummy looking fancy chocolates. And in order to avoid sugar when it's hard I compensate by eating other stuff - tonight a lot of cheese and nuts and fruit. Now I still feel fat so I can't even enjoy the fact that I'm succeeding at my sugar goal :apologetic:

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To set an example for my patients and my family.

To no longer feel inferior or held back because of my weight.

To gain more confidence and be proud of my appearance.

 

Starting Weight: 290 lbs

Main Quest: Reach my Ideal Body Weight of 190 lbs

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7 hours ago, The Scarlet Pimpernel said:

I am a bit discouraged tonight though. I've still been able to stay away from sugar but it was hard tonight. Some friends brought us some really yummy looking fancy chocolates. And in order to avoid sugar when it's hard I compensate by eating other stuff - tonight a lot of cheese and nuts and fruit. Now I still feel fat so I can't even enjoy the fact that I'm succeeding at my sugar goal :apologetic:

You are doing great but you are in the wrong state of mind.  Your goal is to develop the habit of avoiding sugar.  When developing any habit, there are always secondary outcomes.  A habit depends on the cue, routine, reward loop.  In order to change a habit, you adjust any "knob".  For whatever reason, over a long period you developed a desire for sugar (very common and many, many reasons why this develops).  In his book, Charles Duhigg says you can never eliminate an already embedded habit (or addiction).  You can only change it.  You are working on the routine portion of this habit (eliminate sugar).  But the habit loop is still there and the mind still craves the "reward" that sugar gave it so it is choosing a new "routine" to get the reward it craves.  Now if you had swapped out sugar with smoking, this might be an issue.  But you swapped it with cheese, nuts, and fruits (and much better than swapping with chips, etc).  Keep a bit longer term perspective when developing your new habit and define success only on being consistent with it.  It's true that your calorie count will not drop if you replace all the calories of sugar with other things.  But once you develop the no sugar habit (which is incredibly huge), you can focus on creating other habits or reducing the amount of the things you replaced it with.  So give yourself a pat on the back for staying consistent and true to the habit you are developing.  That is AWESOME!  You must only focus on it, live and breath it, make it your entire definition of success.  Give this habit time to properly become embedded in your mind, and then create new habits.  It's a slow process, but at the end of the year you could have 6-8 new habits.  To keep that in perspective, how many new habits did you create the year before or before that?  Most people go many years without ever intentionally creating even one new habit.  If you create enough habits, the results you want will take care of themselves.

 

One other thing.  Don't fall into the trap of believing the old adage that it takes 21days for a new habit to develop.  A very easy habit might take about a month.  A tough habit (like quitting sugar might take many months before "automaticity" is developed.  I'm on month 2 of my No M habit formation and still feel a bit tenuous about it.  From http://www.huffingtonpost.com/james-clear/forming-new-habits_b_5104807.html

 

Maxwell Maltz was a plastic surgeon in the 1950s when he began noticing a strange pattern among his patients.

When Dr. Maltz would perform an operation — like a nose job, for example — he found that it would take the patient about 21 days to get used to seeing their new face. Similarly, when a patient had an arm or a leg amputated, Maltz noticed that the patient would sense a phantom limb for about 21 days before adjusting to the new situation.

These experiences prompted Maltz to think about his own adjustment period to changes and new behaviors, and he noticed that it also took himself about 21 days to form a new habit. Maltz wrote about these experiences and said, “These, and many other commonly observed phenomena tend to show that it requires a minimum of about 21 days for an old mental image to dissolve and a new one to jell.”

In 1960, Maltz published that quote and his other thoughts on behavior change in a book called

And that’s when the problem started.

You see, in the decades that followed, Maltz’s work influenced nearly every major “self-help” professional from Zig Ziglar to Brian Tracy to Tony Robbins. And as more people recited Maltz’s story — like a very long game of “Telephone” — people began to forget that he said “a minimum of about 21 days” and shortened it to: “It takes 21 days to form a new habit.”

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Current Challenge 

 

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.
Diet is 80% of losing weight, exercise is 80% of motivation.

The only thing I am 100% sure of is my ability to be wrong.

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