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How long does it really take to create a lasting habit? Two weeks? 21 days? 6 months? How long should you expect to start seeing results?
Your expectations about the timeline it takes to get results and to have a real habit dramatically impact your experience. It kind of determines everything! It determines whether you get frustrated and finally give up, or if you’re calm and at peace about the whole process, able to sit back and just keep going. So, this conversation is REALLY important!
I can’t even begin to tell you how many women I coach that have completely unrealistic timeline expectations for their progress. Someone told them something at some point about timelines and how long it takes, and when they cross that line and it hasn’t happened yet, the entire thing blows up. And they just give up and throw in the towel.
Honestly, this is one of my personal soapboxes. Pardon my expression here, but it pisses me off when I see other trainers and programs out there telling you that you can accomplish something in a certain time frame that is absolutely ridiculous. This industry is riddled with false hope and pipe dreams. And it’s probably why you’ve given up so many times in the past and feel like such a failure because you’re constantly starting over.
I was chatting with one of my friends not that long ago, and she started coaching with me last year. After hemming and hawwing about it for a while, she finally pulled the trigger and joined me in my Jumpstart 30 program. So, I coached her through getting her nutrition and fitness habits jumpstarted for 30 days in that program, and then we continued on together for another 60 days in my Jumpstart 60 program, and then after that we kept going… GS30, then GetstrongX.
Her big goal through the entire process was for healthy eating to become second nature, and to just become a woman that works out 3 days a week, and ultimately to simply be a consistently healthy woman that is always keeping her fitness and nutrition a top priority. And she was doing great!
About 9 months into her journey, everybody in her family got sick. One kid after another kept getting sick and she’s not able to give her habits the attention she felt they deserved like she had been able to when things were more normal. She just didn’t have the time.
She felt like a failure, felt like food would always be in control of her, felt like none of these things would ever be a real habit.
And I looked at her and said, “Jamie, you’re doing great! You’re actually right on track, timeline-wise. Obviously things aren’t a sticky habit yet, and that’s totally normal. You don’t have to start over, let’s just keep going.”
She didn’t believe me at first, because she was like, “I’m 9 months into this. This is supposed to be waaaay easier by now.”
“Nope, it’s not. It doesn’t get easy for a while. And if you want your healthy habits to really become second nature, we’ve got to adjust those expectations so you can stop getting so disappointed in yourself.”
In this episode, I want to teach you the real timeline. I want to set things straight.
Understand the rules of 3’s to set new expectations for what your journey will look like:
Full disclosure: Background - how this came about…
Moving forward, you need to:
When I was chatting with my friend Jamie, I could visibly see her shoulders relax. She instantly had more confidence in herself. Realizing she was almost 1 year in, and still showing up. So she was doing great! And every day she showed up, she was moving closer to true and lasting habit formation.
The big idea here is to be on the lookout for anything that’s trying to convince you that you can achieve lasting results in a much shorter timeframe. If it says that, just say “nope”.
Adjust your expectations and create honest benchmarks.
And press on.
One of my favorite verses is Galatians 6:9: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”
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