Why Your “To Do” List May Be Fattening

Why Your _To Do_ List May Be Fattening


How is your New Year’s resolution to get healthy going?

Did you know that most New Year’s resolutions are broken by as early as January 18th?

As a clinical hypnotherapist who helps people in the areas of stopping smoking and weight management, it has always been interesting to me that the busiest time of the year isn’t the first few weeks – right after resolutions to change have been made – but the last few weeks of January when the resolutions have been broken (yet again) and the idea that maybe something deeper needs to shift begins to become apparent.

I want to introduce to you one of the biggest buzz killers of our annual get healthy resolve – YOUR TO-DO LIST – and where you put your healthy new goals on it. If you can shift your mind around this one thing, you can get back going with your healthy New Year – I promise!


One reason our “get healthy” promises are vulnerable to die an early-in-the-year death is that we make our starry-eyed resolutions during the holiday season when we have been out of our overwhelming day-to-day life and duties. Our brain has had some down time and we can think BIG.

We imagine how good it will feel to exercise 5 days a week. We muse how much slimmer we will be when we shop every week and have healthy food at home to reach for. We know how much saner we would be if we took 10 minutes a day to meditate! We make the promise to ourselves to make that happen.

Then we get back into our day-to-day life. Our to-do list starts getting longer and all of those wonderful dreams of being slim and healthy are put to the bottom of the list—basically tossed to the curb along with the holiday wrapping paper and dried-out pine tree.

  • “I’m too busy to exercise this week!”
  • “I didn’t have time to shop for healthy food so I went thru the drive-thru!”
  • “How can I meditate when I have to walk the dog, feed the kids and get ready for work?”


Chances are if you have been struggling to get healthy you may have the deep unconscious belief that “I have got to do everything on my list and take care of everyone and then I will have time to take care of myself.”

So, if we are truly to achieve our health goals—it would then go to figure we need to:

  • Start to challenge the belief that our health comes behind everything else on the list.
  • Adjust our to-do list accordingly

1) CHANGE YOUR PERCEPTION OF YOUR HEALTH AND ITS IMPORTANCE ON YOUR LIST: I invite you to see that your health is the thing that you experience all of your life through. Your health is what others also depend upon to be in place in order for you to be of service to them. Your health allows you to bring your best “you” to all you do and all the people in your life. Your health makes everything else on your to-do list possible…get the drift?  YOUR HEALTH SHOULD BE #1 ON YOUR LIST – ALWAYS.

2) OBSERVE YOUR TO-DO LIST WITH NEW EYES: Consider that the overly ambitious inner list maker in your head is not run by you, but by old beliefs and myths that do not even belong to you. Often the beliefs that write our to-do list come from our parents, our culture and society at large, that’s right – your to-do list doesn’t even belong to you!

So start to challenge that darn list. Ask, : “Why is washing the dishes more important than going for a walk after dinner?”

Is that item on your list really that important to do now, or does it just seem that way? What would happen if you shopped for healthy meals before posting your vacay pics on social media? Would the world end?

Ask of everything on your list, “Why do I think doing this is more important than my taking care of myself?”.

Maybe in a new light, as you go through your list, all of those seemingly urgent items now become less pertinent compared to your feeling good in your body because you are making healthy choices and exercising.

By challenging those old beliefs you start to break them up in your deeper mind so that your new and healthy beliefs can start to grow.

I am going to ask you to do something really uncomfortable to your subconscious mind: put your health goals at the top of the list and take some of the other things off your list and put them on the list some other time.

The more you start to look at your to-do list as an advocate for yourself and your health the more some of those other “to-dos” will start to fall away as you see them as way less important that your being your best you.

Once you start creating to-do lists that truly support you won’t even need to put health on your New Year’s Resolution list next year—because “Get healthy and release weight” will be crossed off your list.

So just to review:

  1. Challenge where your health goals are currently on your to-do list.
  2. Take a hard look at your current to-do list and challenge the things on there and their importance in relationship to your health and well-being.
  3. Adjust accordingly.

Have a great and healthy 2018 – where you actually achieve those healthy resolutions!!

xoxo Rita


How To Keep Hunger Away All Day

woman eating yogurt at desk

Did you just eat an hour ago and you are already hungry again?  Are you plagued with cravings for sugary foods or highly refined salty-crunchy foods?  Well, chances are you may not be getting enough protein.

As a hypnotherapist and cognitive weight expert, I will tell you one of the biggest nutritional Shifts that someone can make to take back their power from food is to make sure that they are eating enough protein on a daily basis.  If you have worked with me either privately or with the Shift 30 Day Weight Mastery Process or  Shift in a Box Process—you already know that I harp on a lot about the power of protein!!


If someone is complaining about being hungry, I will ask, “Are you eating enough protein?”

If someone is suffering from night eating, I will inquire, “Are you having a protein rich snack around 4pm?”

If someone has been binging or feeling really addicted to carbohydrates and sugar, I will advise, “make sure you cut the carbs and up your protein in order to break the sugar spell.”

At Shift, we don’t give you a diet.  I really believe that you must individually create a way of eating that you have ownership of–one that works for you and your lifestyle.  I believe you need to discover what works best for you and your body by becoming a loving scientist.  You do this by observing what foods work at what times for you and what doesn’t work and then making changes and choices based on your findings. We don’t have an ‘expert” giving you a list of good foods and bad foods.

I will, however, harp on about your getting enough protein—about 72 grams per day, which is about three 4 oz. servings the size of your palm. If your daily calorie budget is more than 1600 calories a day, you may need even more.



Why would a hypnotherapist blather on so about getting enough protein?

Two reasons and both have to do with your brain—

1)    Research shows that the lack of certain amino acids found in protein sets up the brain to crave sugar and carbohydrates. When you haven’t been eating enough protein, your brain is more prone to seek out the more sweet and refined carbohydrates in large quantities (binges).  Also, the more refined carbohydrates you consume, the more hungry you feel.

2)    Protein gives you the most bang for your caloric buck.  If you are eating relatively few calories in order to stay within your body’s calorie needs for weight release for maintenance, a serving of protein is going to leave you feeling more satisfied and stable than a serving of carbohydrates.

Having said this, I am not advocating a no carb-diet plan here–nor am I saying all is lost if you are a vegetarian or vegan.  I am just saying that upping your protein, no matter what the source, and lessening the starchy carbs usually helps my clients stay happy and satisfied within their caloric needs for weight release.


There are two times I especially suggest that the protein source be with you—breakfasts and afternoon snack time.  If I have learned anything from my own weight struggles, as well as the hundreds of clients I have worked with over the years, it is this: Starting the day with a good protein source sets you on a good course for the rest of the day.  And afternoon snack time is also key because if we stabilize our blood sugar at this time with some protein, then we head into dinner with a sane head and a belly that isn’t screaming to be fed with whatever we can put our hands on first (usually bread!)

Starting the Day Right: Breakfast

Eating morning meal that is right for your body allows you to head into your day with stable blood sugar levels—a must for weight management.  Every body is different in the morning so you need to tune into yours and your special needs.  Observe how your body responds to the breakfast that you currently feed it.  How does it feel a few hours later?  Are you hungry?  Tired? Light headed? Or are you feeling good and focused on what you are doing?

My clients and I have observed the following about different types of breakfast foods.

Help! I just ate breakfast!! (after eating these breakfast foods, one feels hungry in about an hour or so): 

-Sugary and sugar-free commercial yogurts (even fat-free ones)

-Most cold (non-bran) cereals even the “whole grain” ones (this depends on your system)

-Granola (very high in calories too)

-Bagels (also high in calories)



-Toast with jam (no protein)

-Juice only

-Quick-cooking oats or instant oats from envelopes

-Sugary coffee drinks

Wow!  I’m feeling great! (these foods tend to keep one’s blood sugar levels stable and hunger satisfied through the morning):

-High fiber/High protein cereals

-Eggs/egg beaters/ egg whites

-Low fat cheeses

-High protein smoothies

-High protein 0% fat Greek yogurt

-Low-fat cottage cheese

-Whole fruit with some sort of protein

-Slow cooking oatmeal and whole grain cereals

-Vegetarian sausages/links/bacon

-Lean bacon/ turkey sausage/ Canadian bacon

-High fiber muffins that have no sugar in them (Zen muffins and fibercakes)

-Whole grain or high fiber toast/ English muffins/ tortillas with protein on them

-Bean or vegetable soups


It is wise to not allow yourself to get super hungry—that is when many of us tend to overeat. Make snacks work for you—not against you.  Many snacks out of a vending machine or grabbed on the go cause you to feel hungrier and more tired—the exact opposite of what a snack is intended for plus many processed snacks contain more calories than some meals.

Avoid: Stuff out of the vending machine, snacks that are primarily sugar, fat and salt, anything highly processed

Examples:  Cookies, muffins, chocolate bars, sugary juice drinks, sugary coffee drinks, granola bars, chips etc.

Seek: Snacks that contain protein, snacks that contain fiber, snacks that have some protein and complex carbohydrate or fat and carbohydrate.


Fruit and peanut butter

Apple slices and a low fat cheese stick

0% fat Greek yogurt and fruit

Fruit and small amount of nuts

Fiber bar and yogurt

Cottage cheese and fruit

Lo fat ricotta cheese spread on a lo carb tortilla with a savory or sweet topping

Lo-carb tortilla and hummus,

Carrots and hummus etc

Veggie burger patty

Deli turkey slices

Hard-boiled egg with an apple (TJs sells hardboiled, shelled eggs in a bag)

Turkey jerkey

Tuna in a pouch


I could go on and on and on about protein’s power, but don’t take my word for it! If you are struggling with hunger after meals or sugar and carb cravings, try upping your protein intake a few hundred calories a day and removing the same amount of calories of starchy food.  See if this helps keep you more happily on your path to long term permanent weight release.  And let me know what protein swaps work for you!

Have a Shifted Month and May the Protein Source be with You!


5 Master Tips to Keeping Lost Weight Lost

5 tips

5 Master Tips to Keeping Lost Weight Lost

We often hear inspiring stories about people losing weight, but so often these inspiring tales have an untold ending when the pounds start coming back.  For most dieters, the maintenance of a desired weight is far more challenging than the initial weight loss.  And, a weight plateau — staying at a steady weight for a period of time — isn’t associated with success the same way as taking pounds off.

But, isn’t this actually the goal we all want — lose the weight….and keep it off!!

I recently caught up with a client of mine who lost — actually “released”, as she has no desire to re-find the weight — 33 pounds over a decade ago after struggling with her weight her whole life. I talked with her about her maintenance success–what actually works on a “day in, day out” basis to keep lost weight off without thinking about it.

In a world of dieting and starting over again on Monday, Janet might now seem like a super human, but in the past, she was like many dieters, “I had lost and gained weight so many times it was embarrassing.” Janet shared with me how she made a few key shifts in her thinking and behaviors that allowed her to lose (release forever) the unwanted weight, and once she got to her ideal weight, made maintenance easier than she expected.

Janet, like many people who have long term weight success, develop new ways of thinking and behaving that shifts them out of “weight struggling” and into “weight mastery”. Please listen to my interview with Janet where she goes more deeply into the mental shift she made that was a game changer, some specific daily habits, and more about how hypnosis helped change her old thinking.

Here are some insights from my interview with Janet along with research from many people who have taken weight off and kept it off long term:

5 Keys to Long Term Weight Release

1) Focus on changing your life for the better and not just the number on the scale. Our minds are powerful and where we choose to focus creates our reality. Really committing to yourself and  your health in order to make your experience of life a happier and freer one is more seductive than restricting yourself in order just to make the numbers on the scale go down.

2) Bring in the coach and put the critic and rebel on the bench. Janet mentioned a huge part of her mental shift came from really changing her inner dialog. When she started coaching herself instead of criticizing herself, she noticed that the need to rebel disappeared. Many Weight Masters notice this shift in inner self speak is the ticket to lasting change and confidence.

3) Never start over. Ever. The heart of long term weight release and maintenance is about consistency and not perfection. Starting over tomorrow becomes a nasty habit that is hard to break. Make a commitment to yourself to get back to healthy eating at the next meal and learn from your mistakes—don’t start over because of them.

4) Pace yourself –don’t race down the scale. In all of my years of coaching weight and keeping off 40 pounds myself I have never seen a super speedy weight loss stick.  Research shows that releasing weight slowly allows your mind to really adapt to a healthy change in lifestyle.  Remember the way of eating that allows you to release the weight is going to look a lot like the way of eating that allows you to maintain the weight.  Create a way of eating that you love that allows you to maintain your ideal weight.

  5) Surround yourself with supportive people and supportive foods. No weight success story happens in a vacuum.  You have to create the people in your life as a weight support team—people who join you in healthy lifestyle activities.  Also keeping healthy foods in and tempting foods out of your environment has been shown as a key to long term success. Find friends who will exercise with you and enroll family and friends in choosing healthy restaurants and healthy meals to eat when at home. Janet says her husband and friends are a support and know to keep her trigger foods—bread and desserts out of the house.

Just remember:  Long term weight mastery isn’t about being good or perfect. It’s about making a decision to really make a change in your life FOR YOU so that you can be your best you and life your best life.


I am excited to announce that I am publishing the book version of my successful hypnosis based weight mastery program (The Shift Weight Mastery Process).  The book is called From Fat to Thin Thinking: Unlock your Mind for Permanent Weight Loss and will be out in a few months.  I am currently creating a group of people who will be a part of the book’s launch.

If you enroll you will receive:
-Special bonuses created only for book launch participants
-Sneak peaks from the book
-Savings– launch day discounts and more!

Please sign up here to be a part of our exciting launch.