Is it time to recruit support to reach your fitness or weight loss goals?

When it comes to losing weight or becoming fit, one of the first pieces of advice you’ll hear is get support.

Getting support could mean letting everybody in your life know your goals or what you plan to achieve. This should keep you accountable. This will make you choose to stick to your plans so you don’t look like a failure in front of family, friends, co-workers and acquaintances.

Is this advice right?

I recently watched a Ted Talk about sharing goals with others. You can find that at this link if you care to watch it for yourself.

But in summary, it states you shouldn’t broadcast you hopes, dreams, goals and pursuits to the world.

Why not?

There’s evidence that your brain feels like it already achieved your goal as soon as you talk to somebody about it. It gives you that same accomplishment high you’d feel when actually accomplishing your goal.

Since your brain feels like the goal is already done, you become less apt to follow through. Research is showing people who broadcast their goals are less likely to accomplish them.

Could that be part of the reason why so many people trying to lose weight fail?


Does that mean you should go it alone?

If you’re not going to broadcast your goals to anyone and everyone you know, does that mean you should set your goals, but then keep your mouth shut?

The problem with this approach is you won’t have access to other people’s experiences they might share with you if you told them you’re travelling a similar path as them. You won’t be able to ask questions or get advice that might shave weeks, months or even years, off achieving your goals.

Striking a balance

Perhaps the best choice is telling a select few people about your goals – the people you plan to enlist to be your support, mentors or information providers.

That way your brain has less chance to feel like it’s already accomplished your goal. You can be selective about who you tell to avoid people you know won’t be supportive or worse, people who intentionally will attempt to sabotage your plans.

What types of support might you need?

You might be tempted to tell just one person. But that could make that person feel overburdened or overly responsible for your ability to succeed.

That’s a lot to ask of one person.

If you identify which kinds of support you feel you’ll need, you can enlist different people you know will provide just that particular kind of support.

Here’s a list of the types of support you might need:

  • Technical Support
  • Motivational Support
  • Listening Support
  • Emotional Support
  • Practical Support
  • Shared Experience Support
  • Participatory Support

Maybe you only need one type of support. Maybe you need all seven. By carefully choosing proactive and caring individuals you’ll be more likely to get past any roadblocks you encounter along the way.

Identify who in your life already is good at providing the type of support you need or seek out new friendships if necessary.

Your Turn

Did you watch the video? Do you agree that keeping mum is a better way to reach your goals? Please share why or why not in the comments below!

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