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Ditching the all or nothing mindset

One of the biggest mistakes we can make when it comes to achieving our goals is adopting an ‘all or nothing’ mindset. This type of mindset involves extreme thinking patterns, or viewing your health and fitness in terms of black and white (eg. either ‘good’ or ‘bad’ or ‘on track’ or ‘off track’). 

While it can be easy to feel like we’ve messed everything up after a sweet treat or a missed gym session, viewing your health and fitness goals in this way will only set you up for failure long-term. So, here are 5 ways you can ditch the all or nothing mindset and unlock your best results yet!

First things first, let’s define what an all or nothing mindset actually looks like: 

  • Needing to be 'perfect' with your training/nutrition
  • Viewing an ‘off plan’ meal as a failure 
  • Blowing out after eating 1 row of chocolate because you’ve ‘ruined it anyway’ 
  • Having to ‘start fresh’ after a slip up 
  • Resorting to extremes to achieve your goals (cutting calories, excess cardio, cutting out food groups)
  • Either being ‘all in’ or ‘all out’ 
  • Not starting or committing to your goals because you’re afraid to fail 

If any of this sounds familiar, here are 5 ways to break free from this way of thinking gf! 

  1. Progress > perfection
  • Recognise that progress is not always linear 
  • Focus on consistent effort and small wins rather than aiming for perfection or expecting immediate results
  • Celebrate each milestone (no matter how small!) and acknowledge that even small progress is valuable
  1. Challenge your thoughts
  • Become more conscious of when you are falling into the "all or nothing" mindset, and challenge those thoughts by reframing situations in a more constructive and positive way
  • For example, is eating a cookie actually a ‘failure’, when you have previously been unable to stop without eating the whole packet?
  • Is missing 1 gym session a failure when you still trained 3x this week? 
  1. Set realistic expectations:
  • Expecting perfection will only set you up for failure when you realise you cannot sustain it
  • Instead, set realistic and achievable goals that align with your capabilities and circumstances
  1. Practice self-compassion:
  • Be kind to yourself when setbacks occur or when things don't go as planned, and remember that this is an unavoidable part of your health and fitness journey! 
  • Treat yourself with the same understanding and support you would offer to a friend or loved one 
  1. Embrace the process
  • Shift your attention from solely focusing on the end result to appreciating and finding joy in the journey 
  • Remember that your health + fitness journey is not a race, and has no 'start' and 'end' date - it's for life!
  • Keep in mind that being consistently good will yield better results than being inconsistently perfect! 


Love TWS coach Bronte x