5 – Learn from Your Experience

If you’re like most people I’ve worked with, you’ve tried to this before.

And you may have established certain “rules” about how this stuff works.

Detox diet? Bring on the green juice!

500 spent at Nike on runners and workout gear? The credit card is still smoking.

Elaborate workouts with weird exercises and complex set and rep equations? Yep.

Hours of slogging on a treadmill? That belt is greased and ready!

And the best part? You’re gonna cram this all in one day.


No wonder so many people find it hard to reach their goals.


They run themselves into the ground by doing too much at once.


They take it too seriously and beat themselves up when they miss a workout or slip and binge.


Sorry, but that’s not how I work. Because I know that’s not how you work. (Even though you may think you can handle it!)

I know from experience that to make drastic and lasting change, you need to simplify.

Master one basic habit at a time.

Step by step.  Bit by bit. 

Maybe you don’t think the “one habit at a time” thing will work.

It’s probably different from everything else you’ve tried. It’s probably not what you expected.

You might even say it’s the opposite of what you’d expect.

The Opposite Test

In an episode of the TV show Seinfeld, George decides to do the opposite of everything he usually does, because his life sucks.

When he begins to do this, his luck changes and everything begins to go his way.



Can we use the same formula for changing your nutrition habits? Yes.

Wouldn’t it be nice to:

Be free of obsessive calorie counting?

Keep your eating simple?

Make measurable progress?

Take things one easy step at a time?

And isn’t that the opposite of what you might expect to do?


So today, how about an Opposite Day of your own?

Think about everything you’ve tried (and possibly failed) before to get what you want… and then how you might do the opposite.

How’s that working for you?

I have a super-scientific way of testing new diets or exercise plans:

How’s that working for you?

In other words, look at your experience as evidence.

For instance:

Did restrictive dieting really work for you…or create a rebound binge?

Did those expensive running shoes really inspire you to get moving… or gather dust in the wardrobe?

Did you really get up early to hit the treadmill… or did that dream die by Wednesday?

Did that crazy-tough workout plan really turn you into a ninja… or are you funding your physiotherapist’s trip to Florida?

You get the idea.

We call this question process outcome-based decision making.

You decide what to do based on the results you get.

Think about it:

Are your choices giving you the results you want?


How did your previous programme work out for you?

If it didn’t, it may be time to do the opposite.

Luckily, you’re already doing your own Opposite Day, just by being here

 Pause and Reflect

  • What have you tried in the past?
  • How did that work for you in the long term?
  • What might be the opposite of what you've tried in the past?