You’re annoyed with yourself. Very. Downright angry, now that you think about it. You vowed last month you’d stick to your diet and slim down for the summer, and here you are, berating yourself over that double fudge extravaganza you pigged out on last night.

Which wouldn’t be so bad except for the caramel-vanilla ice cream delight you fell prey to the week before. And oh! There’s that whipped cream strawberry confection that the love of your life insisted you share with him just a few days earlier. All right, fine! So sweets are your downfall, what of it?!

You’re a failure. That’s what. A spineless, totally lacking in self-discipline failure, at least that’s what you tell yourself. Can’t stick to a diet, not even for a miserable four weeks, even with the potential reward of the adorable bikini you sooo want to show off this summer.

Aargh. Might as well give up, shove the miniscule black spandex lace cuteness to the back of your drawer, and pull out your tried and true one-size-fits-all shapeless one piece.

Not! In your month, you succeeded at your diet twenty-seven days! That’s fantastic! Why would you give your three “off” days more credit than your twenty-seven “on” days?

Yet that’s exactly what we do – with our diets, quality time with our kids, work projects, our love lives – we give inflated, exaggerated, overdone credit to our goofs, our flubs and our mistakes. We pretty much ignore, dismiss, or otherwise devalue our successes.

What a recipe for disaster! Whatever you focus on grows. If you choose to focus on your mistakes, your supposed “failures,” you dump into a woe-is-me focus, which only increases the likelihood of your making more and more of these flubs.

Instead, accept that “OK, that wasn’t the swiftest choice for me to make” when you mess up and simply come up with a new plan that makes it easier for you to be successful. Keep your focus steadily on the many times you did succeed at your stated goal, and simply move on. You keep going on by moving on, not by standing in place and stamping your feet all over your suffering self-esteem.

Focus on what’s going right with your diet, in your love life, your work life, whatever it is you want to improve, and more successes are bound to come your way.

Choice and focus are powerful. Choose what part of your experience you want to see more of, focus on that, and more of it will flow into your life. Guaranteed!

Author's Bio: 

Noelle C. Nelson, Ph.D., is a psychologist, relationship expert, popular speaker in the U.S. and abroad, and author of nine best-selling books. Dr. Nelson focuses on how we can all enjoy happy, fulfilling lives while accomplishing great things in love, at home and at work, as we appreciate ourselves, our world and all others. Visit,