"What will you say no to if you’re truly saying yes to this?" This was a question posed last week in a leadership blog I follow. And I liked it. Simple. Straight forward. Honest.
We want it all. To have the cake and eat it too. Yes, I want to be healthy. Yes, I want to wear a smaller size. Yes, I want to have more energy, be more flexible, feel awesomely confident. Amen. Bring it on, sister (or brother.) But wait, what? I will have to do things different? Hmmm.... Well.... Let me think about that.
Seriously?!?! Do you know how many times I've had that conversation? Yet I get it. I would like a fit body without having to work out. And I would really like a clean house without having to clean. And as long as I'm making a list here, what I really, really would like is a to have totally smart finances without having to pay attention to finances. If you see any of those magic wands waving over my head, please, let me know.
So, you're willing to go on a "diet" for a short period of time, maybe - but to have to make changes long term? And to actually have to look at other areas of life? Not so much. If I lose someone, that is where it happens. Which brings me to what's on my mind here today. I use a Well-Being Evaluation that invites you to rate your life in 18 areas, in three categories - your body, mind and finances. What does this have to do with weight loss? Let me tell you. Weight is a symptom - of your eating, exercise, sleep and relaxation habits. (That's the "body" part.) And these habits are largely a symptom of the other two areas. Think about it. But what causes you to eat unhealthy food? What keeps you from enjoying regular exercise, sleep and relaxation?
If you are trying, but it isn't working - yes, the food plan is critical. And I'm going to get into that next week. But the food plan alone is just a diet. And diets don't work. We have 1/2 billion attempted diets each year in our country and an obesity epidemic. The reason I hear most people struggle is not due to : pizza, chips and candy. It is due to boredom, stress, lack of time and lack of support. And so to have long-term success; to enjoy long-term health - they have to get addressed. "What will you say no to if you're TRULY saying yes to this?" That is the question.
In the first scenario - there is money stress, maybe relationship stress, lack of time and resources for self care and an overall just trying to keep up effort. Food becomes a filler for boredom, stress, fatigue, comfort, etc. In the second scenario - there is a big job that pays the bills which involves a lot of stress and long hours. In some cases work and relationships are fulfilling, in others they are not - but overall little time is left over for self care. In other words, Peter (Body/Mind) gets robbed to pay Paul (Finances.)
Do you see what I'm getting at here? To improve your body, you must look at your life. And you must move them forward together. It simply isn't possible to make progress toward a healthy body if you are stressed, unfulfilled or equally depleted in another area. I promise. Because those are the reasons why you eat. And because if another area takes more than 33%, what gives?
The question works both ways. If you are saying yes to everything else, you are saying no to your health. Have you been there... too exhausted to care what you eat for dinner, much less to follow through on your well-intended plans to get off the couch? Too stressed to want to make healthy choices? Too busy to take the time to get to the store to have healthy food in the house?
If you do that math, even giving just 10% more to the Mind/Finances areas of your life leaves only 14% for your body. Which is arbitrary math - but do you see the bigger point? We let daily life rob us from our ability to make progress toward a healthy body. And then we continue to bang our head against the wall counting calories or trying to exercise harder - totally frustrated. When in reality, while we are fixated on the scale, we fail to look at our life. It's like we take the little square picture, when what we need is the panoramic view.
So, if you want to be DONE playing small. DONE with that hamster wheel. Please let me know. Shoot me an email... connect on facebook... Decide how you are going to say yes to your health - and make it actually happen, versus something you hope to get to maybe, someday. It is one of my favorite conversations.
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