Kia Ākina

Working towards lifelong recovery from obesity

Persist – Be a tortoise rather than a hare

Slow small steps achieved every day will get a tortoise a lot further along the journey than a hare that intermittently takes great leaps and bounds.

The hare can appear to be making dramatic progress in the short-term. However, when we take a longer time horizon, the hare also spends a lot of time sitting around talking and nibbling food, not making any progress at all. Over an extended period of time the tortoise will make greater progress, by doing something every day, even when it is relatively small and slow steps being taken.

It takes persistence and patience, but by committing to never giving up and doing something every day, small steps that compound over time.

How to increase our persistence and patience?

The best way is to be a wise tortoise and only take on as much as we know we can sustainably cope with on an everyday basis.

Kia Ākina is about permanent lifestyle change, not a short-term programme on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays for the next three months.

So for instance, it is a good idea to only increase our physical activity in small increments – perhaps 500 extra steps a day at a time. Once we’ve sustainably made that increase, and only then, we can consider increasing them by another 500 steps and so on.

Regarding food, we do well to consider enacting just one small sustainable new food rule which we know we’ll be able to stick to long-term, and once we’ve got that one going well, and only then, consider a further new food rule. And so on.

Instead of being a pack of dramatic impulsive hares, we are becoming a group of quiet steady tortoises.

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