Single-Tasking: The Trick to Starting and Sticking With Your Diet


Inevitably we will all stumble and fall off of our diets in one way or another. Getting back on track and moving forward is the real challenge especially in a world full of temptation and distraction.

Starting a diet and cutting out certain things cold turkey is still a popular method. The “I’m going to finally get some discipline and do it” or do or die mentality can be heard around the world.


I am no different. I tend to want to wipe the slate clean and do it all overnight. I mentally conjure up the drive to make a decision and promise myself to come through with my perfect plan of execution. Cut this out, add that in, yada, yada, yada and I am set. It’ll all just fall into place because it has to – I said so!


Fast forward a week or two later and this is back in and that is gone for good, yada, yada, yada I am back to square one. Little by little the brand new and shiny habits are gone and I find myself wondering what the heck was THAT all about?!


Multi vs. Single Tasking

It has been proven that multi-tasking isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. Sure, you can do several projects or actions at once but little concentration is given to each task leaving important details, focus and ultimately outcome sub par.


Single-tasking is different. Focusing on a single project, action or effort with uninterrupted concentration normally will yield better outcomes and ultimately create improved goal-oriented habits.


How can we apply this to our diets and put into action a successful plan of positive outcomes?


Answer: Break our diet details into steps and apply a single-task mentality toward meeting each of those steps. We can stop trying to do everything at once and apply all of our focus on changing one thing every two weeks to illicit real world change that will have staying power.


Why two weeks? I believe that is enough time to instill a habit and have it ingrained as a part of your daily life. It is also enough time to master the change and making it become second nature.


Multi-tasking your steps will potentially cause you to become overwhelmed, burnt out and ultimately quit.


A few examples of some single-tasking goals every two weeks:


1. Cut out soft drinks

2. Cut out bread

3. Do 15 minutes of exercise three mornings per week

4. Drink one gallon of water per day

5. Eat a protein-rich breakfast each morning

6. Focus on body weight moves in your program

7. Cut down on desserts each week

8. Take a healthy lunch to work instead of ordering out

9. Reduce the portion of one meal per day

10. Commit to at least three workouts per week


As you can see the changes listed aren’t monumental, earth-shattering in size; they are small shifts that, over time, will sum up to become powerful tools on your quest. Simply do one thing every two weeks.


Choose a small step, take that step, repeat for two weeks and move forward to the next step. Over time you will have amassed not only giant strides toward success but also adopted a significant amount of discipline and positive habits to take on anything.


Now, it’s time for me to set some small two-week goals and stop being so hard on myself!


What tricks can you share to make achieving your diet goals easier and more successful? Do you follow any certain plan for progress?

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  • David

    Let’s Go!!! A little bit at a time will do the trick!

    • Brad Borland

      You got it David!

  • Luis

    I am very lazy to think about what I am going to eat during the day. One thing that helps me is cooking my meals on weekends so I won’t put to much brain on thinking what I am going to eat.
    Thanks for sharing this Brad!

    • Brad

      That is an excellent idea. Thanks for posting!