Approaching holiDAYs is a heavy topic each and every year. As a wellness coach that’s certified in Fitness training and a specialist in Group Fitness, I have tackled questions related to this topic as a concept, a question, or even as a principle. Oftentimes, a person holds certain beliefs from September through end of December, and now it’s expanded through February in some cases. To the readers, I ask how do you view the holidays? Do you see them as one day or week-long celebrations? These questions are important when you begin to consider how you can create a healthy lifestyle, and not feel like you are missing out on festivities that take place during this season. To really understand The How, I first must help you uncover the Why!
WHY is it necessary to make healthy be a lifestyle vs a quick fix or seasonal endeavor?
WHY is a Day seen as anything other than that?
WHY does someone else’s approval dictate the desire to start or continue?
WHY does waiting create anxiety?
WHY does Healthier Living require extremes to kickstart actions?
WHY accept less?
WHY accept your goals can wait?
WHY accept the unknown as unlikely?
WHY accept help and not apply the steps?
WHY accept defeat?
The list of WHY’s is endless and there are certainly more I didnt’ list. In reality, being overwhelmed is what gets and keeps people stuck in a place of denial, regret, stagnation, or no action. Which do you see yourself falling in line with the majority of the time? Typically, what is done in one area shows itself in other areas especially areas that present some sort of challenge. The idea of challenge is relative and is set by the individual. It’s important to introspectively look within and take inventory of the thoughts that drive those responses. I will dive into each WHY individually. In the end of this piece, you will have a working knowledge of what you currently think and how you can use those thoughts to drive your actions on a healthier journey. The goal of this article is to yes, spark interest in a healthy lifestyle, and also, give descriptions of roadblocks, stumbling blocks, and any other mental barriers that impede progress. Get ready to press the gas and pause where needed to make the necessary deviations on the journey to propel you forward.
1. WHY is it necessary to make Healthy be a lifestyle vs a quick fix or seasonal endeavor?
Have you ever heard perception is reality? If so, then what does that mean? It means what one perceives, believes, defines, accounts for, or sees become the viewpoint/vantage point he’ll operate from. So, if healthy is the vantage point, then the actions taken will align with that view. If on a healthy journey one sees healthy as seasonal, then it ends possibly four times a year. When living by this belief, one will constantly start over. Seasonal marks changes, but it also describes ending. As a result, defining one's actions as lifestyle signifies it’s ongoing, and will change organically without first having to start over from the beginning.
2. WHY is a holiDay seen as anything other than that?
The struggle for balance revolves around the day being observed and celebrated longer than a day. In some cases, deviating from that may leave someone feeling unsettled. If there are traditions that build up to the holiday, then reflect on how to engage in activities that will not derail progress or intended goals. Food is just one aspect of how to fellowship with friends and family. Once there is understanding around that belief, then one can speak, act, and expect the day to go differently. The next step is a new day not carrying the celebration over. Enjoy and then elect to move forward on the healthy journey that’s been created.
3. WHY does someone else’s approval dictate the desire to start or continue?
Human being vs Human doings is how I can best dissect this question: Be state vs Do state. A Be state of mind means you are who you are without force or active intention, it’s just who naturally or authentically shows up in the world. Do state means you do something to get into a specific state of mind. When another's input or approval is required it means you are operating from a Do state. From that place you become dependent on that person and that influences actions. Unfortunately, giving someone that much power diminishes the Be state. If the intent is to start, then Be state needs to take over to create authentic steps that will lend to a lifestyle that feels and aligns with current abilities. If the intent is to continue, then the Be state and Do state need to be applied simultaneously. Once a decision is made, that need or influence from others to approve, agree, or disagree is eliminated. Let’s think of this from a fitness example:
Intent: Workout several days a week;
Be state: Monday, Wednesday evenings and Thursday/Saturday mornings you show up at gym, complete in-home workout (see Virtual Bootcamp offer), or meetup with a hiking group. These days were decided after carefully reviewing your planner for non-business meetings times and other non-work duties.
Do state: Once husband, bosses, or child’s schedule is clear, then you will see what’s possible for workout times. No days are confirmed because actions are dependent on others responses.
4. WHY does waiting create anxiety?
The anticipation of what’s to come builds up over time and leaves one with a feeling of uncertainty about the outcome. This unknowing becomes burdensome and leads one to question their ability to succeed in reaching goals. On a side note, those that already suffer from anxiety through exercise may improve mental health by helping the brain cope better with stress from the release of endorphins that exercise provides.
5. WHY does Healthier Living require extremes to kickstart actions?
Heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, inflammation are all drivers to get in action and create healthier habits through fitness and nutrition. The unsilent majority seem to rely on these conditions to motivate change. As a coach, I've assisted hundreds start and reach their health goals. After reviewing the list, a large majority were urged to start because of medical conditions or fear of an impending condition if immediate changes were not instituted. Have you heard the saying sometimes you have to hit rock bottom to make you not want to be in that place? Well, in the world of healthy living hitting rock bottom is not a place someone can afford to wait for because at that point making changes may not reverse the adverse effects.
6. WHY accept less?
If you don’t know your worth or belief you are worthy, then how will you expect and accept anything more? This is not a question as much as it is a statement about setting the value for what’s of value. When it comes to the love of Family, Friends, or Faith why wouldn’t Fitness be included with the F’s of importance. Healthy living will cost more overtime if there is less upfront investment. An upfront investment is actively working nutrition and fitness solutions. Until there is a true connection and desire to this lifestyle, then less is all one will give. This means healthy living will receive the leftover time and attention vs the fresh and raw investment it requires.
7. WHY accept your goals can wait?
When there are millions of other tasks ahead that require immediate attention how do you decide which comes first? The answer is representative of the person and what is seen as the most pressing task at that time. In my experience as a coach, people place others needs before their own not because they want to, but because they feel their goals can wait or there will be time later. How do they know there will be time later? Actually, they don’t but they trust that will be the case. Also, they hope for a better tomorrow so they can squeeze in time for their hopes and dreams. Now, as a coach I tell them today is the tomorrow you are waiting for. Go ahead and create the time in your schedule! The response is always how do I create time, and my answer is how can you not. Time is a priceless, invisible, powerful force that will bully and leave you feeling defenseless. However, the opposite is true when you stand up to time and break down what’s available during the 86,400 seconds in a day.
8. WHY accept the unknown as unlikely?
Yes, you do not know what you do not know, but what you do know is you have the ability to achieve great things. Before I state that as a fact, ask yourself do you believe you can achieve greatness in the categories that matter to you? If this is not a belief you currently hold, then that’s an area to work on. The best way to sustain a healthy lifestyle is believing in the unknown because there's no way of knowing what will happen. Yes, you will have results, but in what way will they reveal themselves first. It’s important to embrace the journey and be open to physical and mental surprises that happen differently for each person.
9. WHY accept help and not apply the steps?
Some trust the solution, trust the coach, and trust the results they’ve seen will happen for them. If that trust truly exists, then why would one sabotage results and block goals from truly happening. That questions tells a story about trust in self, and their ability to sustain results. What will reaching goals change, and what will it look and feel like? After casting their vision, it’s the role of that coach to passionately support, show, and shift their perspective along the journey. Eventually, the person grows to take ownership of their progress.
10. WHY accept defeat?
If uncertain about one’s ability to win, then they are settling for defeat. This doubt will stop one from taking chances. As a result of not taking chances, succumbing to defeat will happen. This is not the only option, going for your goals will lead one on a path of discovery. Along this path, the outlook, possible goals, and lastly thoughts will shift as well.
As I close out the series of Why’s, it blends nicely to another series called the How’s. Those How’s are also a list of questions. To answer those questions, I’ll provide specific steps for mental, physical, and nutritional support along the path to healthy living. It is important to go through these stages of goalship to successfully build a healthy lifestyle that does not stifle daily life.