I spend most of my Saturday mornings assessing Custom Body Fitness members.  An assessment is very important to ensure people get results, and one of the many pieces to be assessed is the cognitive process.

The cognitive process

There are many facets to the cognitive process, such as knowledge, attention and memory.  Judgment, evaluation and reasoning are also important.

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Everything works together.  This is one of the reasons it can be difficult to focus on only one area of our cognitive process.  For example, if a person wants to change his reasoning, first he needs to change his beliefs, which in turn are a product of his memory.  However, his beliefs can be changed with new experiences, which affects his reasoning, which in turn creates new memories.

Relapse

My point is that it’s not a simple process to change one’s cognitive process.  It won’t happen overnight. It takes time and requires patience.  But it is important to take the first step.

Assessing one of my clients last Saturday, I noticed that she had relapsed.  Relapsing is not uncommon, but it’s important to figure out why it happened.  In this case it was partly because of her cognitive progress.  She sabotaged her weight loss program by thinking and saying things like, “I’ll start tomorrow,” “It is my cheat day,” “I’ll burn it off,” “I already ruined my day,” “I’m justifying what I eat with my emotions,” and the list goes on.

This type of thinking is like breaking your arm and, instead of setting the bone and letting it heal, saying, “My arm is already broken. Let’s just amputate.” It does not make sense!

Peer pressure

Also, her friends may inadvertently cause her to drop her weight loss program by telling her things like, “You already look great and you’re already skinny. Eat whatever, like me.”

Peer pressure can push our cognitive progress to make wrong decisions.  This is why some people kill, get into accidents, go broke, etc.  Sometimes we do what others want in order to be accepted without weighing up the consequences.

cognitive process 2However, relapses are not all bad.

They remind us to get back on track.  We need to work on our cognitive progress.  The real problem here is not the foods we eat or the decisions we make.  Therefore willpower does not work.  Thoughts become actions and actions become reality.  Consequently, the focus needs to be the cognitive process.

Changing your mind

Only a small percentage of people are ready to change their cognitive progress, which is why only a small percentage are successful in their weight loss program.

Are you are part of the less than 1% who are ready to change?  Here are some skills that I have found help many of my clients to change their cognitive progress.

1) Be aware of your thoughts and approach them.  Knowing what you are thinking and understanding that the process can be improved to get what you want — in this case weight loss — makes it easier for you to find tools to help your cognitive process.

2) Challenge your beliefs.  Even if you have been taught that the earth is flat since you were a baby, be open if someone comes and tells you that it could be round.  Do some research, use some common sense, and if it makes sense change your beliefs.

3) Read books on how to control your thoughts, and follow successful people.

4) Cut your links with negative peers or people who push you to be worse and don’t help you to become better.  Rather, find people who are pushing you to be a better person and teach you how to fish, not how to beg for a fish.

Understand the importance of your mindset

Many times the problem is the way we think — our cognitive progress.  An eating plan will not help.  Being open to new beliefs, being conscious of our thoughts, putting new positive information in our brain and modeling people who have achieved what we want are ways to improve our cognitive process.

Follow these recommendations, be patient, and be kind to yourself if you relapse. Get back on track and repeat the cycle.  Each time your relapses will be less frequent, and you will adopt a new way of thinking that affects your actions and helps you get what you really want from the bottom of your heart.

Connect with WatchFit Expert Sandro Torres, and check out his fantastic book Lose Weight Permanently: Effective Body Transformation Through Lifestyle Changes

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