How to Shift your Mindset and Start a Diet and Stick to It

How to shift your mindset and start a diet and stick to it

For the longest time, it was believed – even by the experts! – that our beliefs, talents, and intelligence, and, therefore, our potential, identity, and reality, were pretty much set in stone. Talk about defeating! Fortunately, as more and more research in the realm of mindset and positive psychology emerged, experts began to observe new findings – our mindset isn’t fixed, like we believed for so long, rather, our beliefs, talents, and intelligence are quite malleable with limitless potential for change. In this article, we’ll teach you how to start a sustainable diet and specifically discuss how to do so within the realm of a mindset shift to start a diet and stick to it.

The term “growth mindset” was later coined and made uberly popular by Dr. Carol Dweck and her team, and then detailed in her best-selling book, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success,” which you should absolutely order right now by clicking here.*

*We make no money if you decide to purchase this book. 

Your mindset is the makeup of the thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs you hold. Collectively, your mindset influences the actions you take, the results you achieve, the identity you possess, and the reality you experience. 

How to Shift Your Mindset

First, it’s important you know that you literally can rewire your brain.

Specifically: your brain is capable of undergoing several physiological changes, such as growing new neural connections, strengthening existing ones, and improving communication signaling speed and impact with impulses. 

The collective changes that the brain is capable of undergoing is known as neuroplasticity.  Neuroplasticity is defined as “the brain’s ability to modify, change, and adapt both structure and function throughout life.”

Science literally shows that you can change and continue to improve, learn, and grow!

Know that.

For more information on this, Jennifer Smith gives a phenomenal overview of neuroplasticity and the latest research on growth and fixed mindsets in her article, “Growth Mindset vs Fixed Mindset: How what you think affects what you achieve.

Secondly, if you recall from our previous article, “Weight Loss Affirmations For Sustainable Weight Loss,” you’ll remember the significant downstream effect an affirmation has on your actions, results, and identity. 

Our word choice and self-talk both make up the collection of hundreds of thousands of thoughts that we have on a daily basis. 

Our thoughts directly influence the actions we take. When we take an action consistently, it becomes a habit

Our habits shape our results and outcomes, which ultimately influence both our identity and reality


There is power in word choice, self-talk, and consistency

Someone who possesses the belief that she has a fixed mindset is likely to remain stuck ruminating in unkind self-talk and defeating thoughts, such as:

  • “This is too hard.”
  • “I can’t do this.”
  • “I’ll always be fat.”

And, inevitably, will condition herself to give up easily, feel failure is final, and reduce the likelihood of taking risks, especially when it comes to attempting to feel better. 

Someone who possesses a growth mindset, on the other hand, first and foremost recognizes that failure is not final and that she is not her thoughts. With a growth mindset, she embraces her flaws and mistakes and views them as opportunities for growth. 

  • “I can learn a lot from this not working out the way I thought it would.”
  • “Now I know two strategies that do not work for me.”
  • “This doesn’t define me, it’s simply an opportunity to reassess and buckle down.”

Furthermore, they accepts setbacks as a part of the learning process and uses them as motivation to continue working toward her goal.  

Let’s take a look at how the growth and fixed mindset typically play out when trying to start a sustainable diet and stick to it…

Shifting Your Mindset to Start A Sustainable Diet and Stick to It  

When it comes to making a mindset shift to start a sustainable diet and stick to it it’s imperative that you redefine and reframe your relationship specifically with the word diet.

Allow me to explain…

There are actually two definitions of the word diet, yet, only one gets all the attention. 

The first definition, which is the one we’ve all come to know and develop a love-hate relationship with is, “intentionally eating to lose weight.” However, the second, under-the-radar definition is “a habitual way of eating.

The example I like to use to illustrate the difference is as follows: when someone shares that she follows a plant-based diet we quickly recognize that she habitually eats plant-based foods. We don’t automatically assume she’s eating to lose weight.

Do you see the key difference here?

I hope so because when you can create a mindset shift around your relationship with dieting, you unlock the potential to slow down to better promote adherence, which promotes consistency, each of which is essential to creating lasting, positive change!


When you allow a mindset shift to occur to focus on the second, more important definition of the word diet, you’re able to better see and understand that when you’re seeking weight loss, you must first solidify a habitual way of eating, one that is rooted in individualization, simplicity, and sustainability. 

We create a step-by-step blueprint to help you do just this called “The Significant Sustainable Weight-Loss Formula.” You can click here to download and begin reading absolutely free

The Power of this Mindset Shift: Start Sticking to Your Diet

Once you redefine the word diet and begin working toward rebuilding your relationship with dieting, there are two critical factors you must focus on: individualization and simplicity. Could mention growth mindset.

Your foundation of healthy eating choices (those done consistently; your habitual way of eating) needs to be rooted in you and aligned with your preferences, lifestyle, and goals. 

When you make this shift a priority your food choices will begin to feel effortless because you’re not requiring yourself to make any significant, out-of-character food-related behavior changes.

And, secondly, your approach to eating well to feel your best should be simple. If you’re being asked to complete complex calculus-style math while logging your intake into an app, to avoid a never-ending list of foods, or to adhere to a hodgepodge of restrictions and rules, you’re going to burn out quickly. Long sentence.

When you experience a mindset shift that helps you to view dieting as a habitual way of eating well to feel your best, and then take action to root your decisions in both individualization and simplicity, the byproduct is a sustainable approach to eating well! Long 

And, when you are ready to then make a change to your portions to start a diet, you’ll find that sticking to your diet is easier than ever before because the only change you have to make is to the amount of food on your plate.

You won’t need to transform your grocery list, meal prep routine, or regular food choices (um, hello, stress) because you’ll already have a unique and simple approach in place!

This is the formula for starting a sustainable diet and sticking to it.

Working closely with you to build your individualized nutrition plan, founded upon individualization, simplicity, and moderation – is the first priority we have for every new member of The 5% Community. From there, we work hard to help you undergo a series of mindset shifts to not only achieve your weight loss goal for good, but to empower you with the confidence, control, and inner calm you desire to feel, look, and be your best.

The 5 Percent Community is our 12-month, signature sustainable weight-loss experience and transformational program designed to provide you with a clear path, proven plan, specific action steps, and unmatchable accountability and support needed to transform your mindset, belief systems, self-talk, habits, and nutrition behaviors – the key elements that need to change – in route to significant, sustainable weight loss.

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Paul Salter

Paul Salter is a Registered Dietitian and Founder of The 5% Way. Since 2013, Paul has worked one-on-one with nearly 1,500 men and women, helping them to collectively lose tens of thousands of pounds of body fat and keep it off for good. He’s also published nearly 1,000 articles, two books, and 175 podcast episodes (and counting) on all things related to our five core elements of sustainable weight loss.

The Maintain My Weight Loss After A Diet Blueprint


  1. […] hope so because when you can create a mindset shift around your relationship with dieting, you unlock the potential to slow down to better promote adherence, which promotes consistency, […]

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