10 Reasons You Should Quit Your Diet

I am so honoured to have my dearest friend, Oliver Manalese share another guest post on my blog. Having gone through his own physical and emotional transformation and trying to understand and make sense of the world of ‘dieting,’ Oliver shares the honest and raw truth about diets that go beyond food and exercise. As a personal growth and transformation coach, Oliver works closely with people to help them step into their power and achieve a life they love. From business, to relationships and personal growth, I’ve worked closely with Oliver over the years. He has provided me with tools and insights that I use in my everyday to help keep me in alignment with my true self.  You can visit Oliver on his blog HERE and check out his other guest post on personal growth HERE.  Let’s welcome Oliver Manalese…
I found it impossible to recognize myself. 
One vacation photo captured it all. Me, chugging a beer, and rocking a serious buddha belly really blew my mind that I couldn’t believe it was me! That was when I made a choice that changed my life forever.
Continuing on this path would have meant that staying chunky was my choice. But that was not an option. The dissatisfaction with my current state and intense desire for bettering myself meant I had to kick the old me out the door for good.
When we’re not aware or honest about our destructive habits, or do a reality check, nothing changes. But when we do become aware, new possibilities for change open up. 
Every diet I discovered was bullsh*t. The results never lasted. These are what worked for me and people I know. These are the reasons you need to quit your diet, focus on lifestyle instead, and expand your self awareness, or your efforts won’t stand a chance.
1. You’re a bully
I’ve often said that the biggest bully is the one in the mirror. The way you talk to yourself and treat yourself are what keep you off course from the awareness and transformation that result in a healthier, happier, you. Programs, pills, and potions won’t save you from this. Developing compassion, will.
2. Forget about weight loss
Most dieters focus so much on losing weight. This puts the cart before the horse. Weight loss is a byproduct of a healthy lifestyle. It’s not just food, it’s everything! Exercise, sleep, relationships, rest and so much more. Aim for health and well being. Everything else will follow. 
3. Health is not a product
You can’t buy your way to health. It’s an every choice, every thought, every day, sorta thing. Stop buying into everything under the sun for the dream of being like the fitness models you see in commercials. Stop believing that some diet is the magic solution. Aim for health with your lifestyle choices and watch what happens!
4. Excusing/hating others
“It’s easy for her, she’s naturally skinny” or “He has better genes than me” or “You’re so lucky.” 
Give it up already. I love how Robin Sharma says, “Excusing others is simply excusing yourself.” Stop worrying about other people and focus on what you have power over. You!
5. Others
Look at the people around you. These are people who can pressure you right out of your new lifestyle. You don’t put a recovering heroine addict in a drug house, so why mix yourself up in temptations and peer pressure from others? If you know you’ll be tempted, spend less time with them.
6. Every day start at zero
So you devoured a dozen freshly baked cookies in an emotional frenzy. Cheating that day doesn’t mean failure tomorrow. Start at zero every day. Stop letting mistakes from yesterday compromise the opportunity of today.
7. Overcompensating elsewhere
What we excessively take away from one area, we excessively make up in another area. Deprivation usually ends badly. Eating less, having cravings, and being cranky is bad news all around. We end up doing so well for a few days and then because we’ve been “so good,” we “deserve” extra slices of pie and scoops of ice cream. 
8. Hitting the goal
Yay! We hit our diet goal, we’ve made it as a human being, we’re done now! Sorry to burst your bubble, but it never ends. Diets sell you the idea that there is an end, but well-being is a daily practice.
9. Get stoked!
Get curious about health and well being. Get interested in the amount of energy you will create for yourself. Get excited about all the things you can achieve and accomplish when you become stronger, leaner and happier. It takes small changes over time and you might not see results right away. Just keep going. Trust the process.
10. Dream big, start small
The surest recipe for failure is trying to do everything at once. Out of excitement we overstock on products, health foods and diet guides. We try to implement twenty new habits and we wonder why we’re not getting anywhere.  It takes steam to get any train going and to slowly gain momentum. So do you.
Start with one thing. Master it. Build from there.
Quit your diet now. Choose a better lifestyle. Make it a daily practice.
Gain awareness, build your self confidence, and you will begin to feel that you deserve and owe it to yourself to make choices for your well-being. The hard work of daily exercise, eating quality food, surrounding yourself with supportive people will all fuel the process and push you even further.
And when your friends see you transform and sense a massive shift in your energy, they will undoubtedly ask what diet you’re on. When they do, make sure to have a puzzled look on your face when you respond with: “What’s a diet?”
Guest Post Written By: Oliver Manalese
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Diet Image/Photo Credit: Sarah Faith


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Look Who’s Talking. A Guest Post from Oliver Manalese

I am so pleased to share with you all the incredible wisdom from my dearest friend Oliver. Oliver and I met in University, and though at the time we were acquaintances, the Universe had us reconnect a few years later. He has undergone an incredible transformation and his energy is infectious! We reconnected over our love for health and wellness and soon our friendship grew through our mutual passion for spirituality, personal self growth, yoga, green juices and so much more! I can spend hours talking openly to him about personal struggles, business dilemmas and so on. He is wise beyond his years and inspires me to be a better person, to take charge of my life and fiercely commit to my emotional, spiritual, and mental growth. I am honoured to have Oliver guest post on my blog and share with you his advice and holistic approach to taking charge of your life and living your passion. Everyone….please welcome Oliver Manalese.


Look Who’s Talking.

I for one am truly grateful to have many ambitious and inspiring people I can call my friends. Whether they are entrepreneurs, artists, nutritionists, personal trainers, life coaches, they all inspire me. Most of all they challenge me, my old beliefs, old habits and old ways of being.

Whether it’s a client or passerby who has some ambitious goals we all have one thing in common though: One of our greatest fears is not realizing our own potential. It can be as simple as losing 10 LBS all the way to quitting our 9-5 job and replacing it with a crazy new business idea. But what truly holds us back?

Chatting with a fellow life coach friend of mine we both explored this ‘thing’ that stands in our way from what we know is possible for our life. Inside our own head and imagination we are pretty much invincible. Every piece fits into the puzzle and it all makes so much sense. When faced with the reality of the present moment, these visions and aspirations seem daunting and we often procrastinate in making these dreams into a reality.

Part of my job with my clients is breaking things down to it’s simplest form. For this I can sum it up in two words: “not enough.” It’s those two words we unconsciously say ourselves. Yes, you’re not the only one. We all talk to ourselves.

We could be achieving small and even large goals but the result is always the same. That little voice whines and complains, “I could have been/done/had more” and we miss out on the value we just created, delivered or received. Sound familiar?

So why am I talking about this? Well, all the self-doubt stems from the value we put on our selves. I like calling it self-love. How does one achieve their potential when that voice is constantly reminding us of how unsatisfied we are?

I saw this one quote by Bertrand Russel recently that read: “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wise people so full of doubts.”

Oh, how true. So how do we eliminate self-doubt? Simple answer: you can’t. That little voice in our head that talks us out of our own greatness is the same one that was developed and designed by our environment, society, upbringing and education. It may very well be there forever since it’s been so ingrained over thousands of hours of indoctrination.

Fear not! There is still hope!

The real work here is learning how to distinguish who’s talking. Is it the true you or is it the voice of mediocrity? There is no goal rather it is a lifestyle choice. It is about a daily choice of developing a strong habit of managing that voice to the point where it has little to no impact on how you deal with your current reality.

It might still be there but will have to face off against the true you. That authentic voice inside that you’ve built and designed (or rediscovered) by choice, mindfulness and purpose.

Here are a few building blocks for you to begin rediscovering or redesigning your authentic inner voice utilizing two of my core life principles, self knowledge and self love:

1. Ask: Who’s talking? Whenever you are in a foul mood or simply feeling small, start to notice the voice in your hand. Ask yourself who’s talking? By becoming more aware and mindful of this, you move the unseen, unconscious, habitual negative self talk into the bright spotlight of your conscious awareness.

2. Realize you have a choice. When you finally are aware of this voice in your head that’s keeping you small and limiting your potential it changes everything. What I mean is that once you start becoming mindful of your own self-talk your life will never be the same. Your choice will either be to listen to that voice and continue being small or to manage it every time it comes up and building an immunity to it. It’s your responsibility now that you’re aware of it… so own it.

3. Redesign and re-program. Our brains are like computers and like computers they run on software. The problem with this is we’re running on BASIC instead of Mountain Lion (for you techie-geeks). In other words, the negative self-talk is old software we need to replace with some better and more empowering self-talk or software.

Ah yes, this is where you might think I’m a little cheesy but not trying this is simply regressing to your old ways and this time by choice! So come on, give it a try! Also, I like the idea of adding rather than taking away. Introducing something good and useful eventually replaces all the old crappy stuff taking up too much room. Here are a few respectful suggestions:

  • Find positive media and consume it. Make a positivity music playlist full of great songs that uplift you and listen to it in the mornings. Find books on how to manage your self-talk or are filled with stories that motivate you. Watch documentaries and movies with inspiring stories. Eventually the noise of the news, negative lyrics and super depressing movies will find themselves collecting dust.
  • Surround your self with people that you can model. You know that one or two acquaintances or friends that seem to be pretty fun, easy going, relaxed and are generally optimistic about life? Yeah. Hang out with them more. You’ll find that the more amazing, like-minded people you add to your circle of friends is like pepper running away from soapy water, it sends the energy vampires running!
  • Start a journal. No this tool is not reserved for pre-teen young girls. Some of the most successful people have made it a habit to document their thoughts, ideas and important life moments. Personally, I have accumulated over 4 years worth of journalling that has given me more self-knowledge than my however many years in institutionalized education. I treasure these leather bounded pages more than my gadgets! (That’s saying a lot!) As you write you release pent up energy onto the page. A powerful experience will be looking back weeks, months, years from now and seeing how you have changed. What was top of your mind, the language you used, the stuff you were up to, etc. When you journal it will reveal so much of who you really are and that greater level of self-knowledge is so valuable.
So there you have it. A few easy things to sit and ponder about for the next little bit. But believe me, just by reading this it has already started something inside of you. It way take days, weeks, months or years but these simple ideas will change your life for the better.

Image Oliver Manalese is an Executive Consultant & Coach focusing on the exploration of self-knowledge, self-love and self-expression. The bulk of our reality which includes the quality, integrity and well-being of our health, finances, relationships and work is a by-product of our depth of understanding and continual growth in each of these three areas. This holistic approach to personal transformation provides the tools and insights for individuals to find alignment with their true self and will have a long-term, positive impact beyond the duration Oliver’s coaching programs. Oliver is also an entrepreneur, a licensed real estate professional, singer-songwriter, whole foods lover and a soon-to-be certified Yoga Instructor.
Follow him on Twitter @OliverManalese and www.facebook.com/OliverManalese
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