Get started and stay motivated

Motivation is the final essential component of Mayo Clinic's weight-control program. It's natural to encounter mental roadblocks and resistance when you undertake a major lifestyle change. Once you're ready to get started, here are some strategies to help bolster and sustain your motivation:

*Emphasize the positives. Focus on the good things about losing weight — such as more energy and improved health — and not what you consider the negatives. If you have a setback, don't dwell on it. Put it behind you and move forward toward your goal.

*Prioritize. Don't set yourself up for failure by trying to lose weight while distracted by other concerns.

*Steer clear of dietary gimmicks. Over-the-counter pills and special food combinations aren't the answer to long-term weight control. You want to incorporate healthy behaviors into your lifestyle, not rely on gimmicks.

*Seek out support. Don't feel you have to go it alone. Exercising with a friend or family member, for example, can help keep you motivated.

*Remind yourself you're not looking for a quick fix. Healthy weight loss is slow and steady weight loss that occurs over time. Remind yourself that quick weight loss is usually followed by weight regain a short time later

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