Ep #237: Doing the Bare Minimum

When there’s so much you want to work on with your eating and when life gets busy, your initial reaction might be to just do nothing. It you can’t do it all then it’s not worth it, right? Wrong.

In this episode, I’m talking about doing the little things that will create change and progress. Doing the just bare minimum can be super helpful so listen in to find out how you’ll do it and to help you get out of the all or nothing mindset.

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  • Why feeling overwhelmed is a problem when you’re working on stopping binge eating
  • Why doing the bare minimum can be helpful even if it takes longer
  • How to decide which bare minimum work will be the best option for you
  • How to keep making progress when life gets busy

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Hi! Today I’m talking with you about doing the bare minimum.

This is something I’ve recently started talking about more with my group members, especially the ones who have busy lives or who feel overwhelmed.

It’s because in my Stop Binge Eating Program, I give them a lot.

There’s The Stop Binge Eating Course that has 8 modules with videos and worksheets, coaching calls, an online forum with unlimited written coaching, daily work that I recommend, and within all of that, they’re learning so much, gaining tons of tools, and we’re covering several topics that can be helpful for them to stop binge eating.

And I offer all of this not because they need all of it, they don’t need to consume or engage with all of it in order to stop binge eating, but, because different people need different things and I want it all to be available for them so they can find what they need and what’s most useful for them.

And the same goes for you and this podcast. This is episode number 237 which means I’ve done a lot of episodes on a lot of topics and maybe you have found some of them or most of them to be useful for you, maybe there are some that aren’t relevant to you, and maybe there are some that are relevant now and after you focus on working on what you learned in those episodes, you find there are other things you want to work on later and you go back to other episodes that weren’t as relevant at a different point in time.

You may look at all these topics and tools I’ve talked about on all these episodes and feel overwhelmed by them all.

Maybe you have a lot of eating habits that you’re not happy with, or have a lot of thought patterns that keep coming up about different things that relate to your eating, and you have a learned a lot of tools from the podcast and you don’t even know where to start.

So you don’t start.

Or you start something but then stop and do something else instead and don’t ever fully habituate to anything new because you haven’t spent enough time building the habit.

Or, you look at everything, decide you don’t have time for it all, and your perfectionism creeps in and tells you that if you can’t do it all it’s not worth doing, so you do nothing.

Having a lot to do or having lots of options can be overwhelming and one thing you need to know about overwhelm is that it can freeze you.

It stops you from taking action on anything.

And having a lot to do or lots of options when you don’t have a lot of time can result in the same thing.

So if any of those situations resonate with you, I recommend you do the bare minimum.

Do the bare minimum to get started. Do the bare minimum when you’re short on time.

You do one thing. You do a small thing. You do what feels doable to you.

Now, in order to do this, you have to be on board with the idea that something is better than nothing.

Because you perfectionists out there, and those of you who believe in all or nothing, get stuck in the idea that if you can’t do it all then it’s not worth doing.

But this is so not true.

You can make progress, you can make changes, and you can build habits doing one small thing consistently.

You’re going to do one small thing consistently, something you believe is doable and something that you think will have an impact on your current goal.

And when you make time for it and you do it, you’ll start to see it become easier and more automatic, and when it does, you can move on to the next thing that’s small and doable.

Now, might it take longer do make changes this way than if you did more things and spent more time working on your goal?

Of course, but it for sure won’t take as long as it would if you did nothing.

Slow progress is better than no progress.

So when you’re short on time, or when you’re feeling overwhelmed, do the bare minimum and do one thing.

And don’t then create overwhelm about choosing what that one thing is.

The whole purpose is to ease overwhelm so let’s not increase it.

So in my group program I help my members figure out what the best option is for them and I’ll give them personal recommendations but if you’re doing this on your own, here’s how I recommend you figure this out.

Write down all your options. What do you want to be doing? Get it all on paper so you can see what you have to choose from.

Next, mark which ones you think will be doable for you to do. Consider how much time you have to work on this and consider where you’re at mentally and which won’t be too challenging at this point.

Then, of those doable ones, which do you think would be the most impactful? If there’s more than one that you think will be the most, just pick one. Don’t stress about which one you pick. Either would be impactful so you’re not going to make the wrong decision.

And then you schedule a time to do it, you commit to doing it, and you get to work on it.

And if you miss a day or two or whatever, you do not give up on it. You get back to it when you can.

And that’s how you’ll make progress doing the bare minimum.

And what’s also really helpful about doing this little by little, is that you learn what actually is the most impactful for you so if life does get busy, you’ll know what bare minimum work you can do to keep you making some progress.

I was coaching one of my group members recently and she was telling me that doing the work to stop binge eating is a lot of work and she doesn’t have the time and energy to do it all.

So we talked about what she can do.

She had this idea in her mind that she had to do all these things in order to not binge and although doing all those things were super helpful, when she’s busy in her life, there are a few things that will be the most impactful for keeping her head in the game and keeping her making progress.

So she’s going to put her focus on only those things when time is tight and do more when she can.

Sometimes it only takes one thing, or a few things, to make a difference.

Find out what that thing is or those things are for you.

Something is better than nothing.

Even if it’s just one thing.

Alright, go find out what that one thing is for you and I’ll talk to you next time.

Bye bye.


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