Sunday, January 20, 2013

Then, and ONLY Then, Will It Happen For You

It's 20 days into the new year of 2013, and I wonder what percentage of New Year's Resolutions are still standing.  So I did a little (very little) research into the topic.  Here's what I found in one article this morning:

"It took one-third of Americans less than a week to cheat on their New Year's Resolutions, a new study by research and consulting firm YouGov reveals. The research showed that 11 percent had already broken at least one resolution, while 22 percent had cheated a few times, but were still trying to stick to their goals."  That was taken from Business News Daily's January 15 edition.  

Wow, that didn't take long did it? Less than a week?  Elsewhere in the article, it stated that health and fitness were the most common types of resolutions made, and thus the most common ones to be broken.  Have you been one of those annual health and fitness resolution breakers this year?  and last year?  Or maybe for most or all of your life?  There's a simple reason for this, and I am going to explain it here.

Here it is in a nutshell:  Your "why" isn't big enough.  That's really it.  If your "why" were big enough, you'd not have any issue staying true to your stated goal/resolution.  Your "why" is your reason for making that decision.  If your resolution is to get fit, or lose weight, or get healthy because you're in need of those things, yet you've failed regularly at it, then your "why" isn't big enough to keep you committed to your goal.

Oh sure, you "know" you should get fit.  You "know" you should lose weight.  But you actually haven't sat down and really gotten serious about listing and reading and "feeling" all your reasons for staying true to your desire. It's in your head, but not your heart.   If you had done this, your commitment would stick.  Lots of people "want" to, but most don't.  I had a friend and patient that allowed herself to gain massive amounts of weight, and I mean massive.  I remember trying to coach her to stop the weight gain as she became larger and less healthy.  Eventually she had to have a tracheotomy so she could breath, and eventually she was confined to wheelchair, and eventually her bed.  I even tried to hit her with what to me would be the most convincing and compelling reason to change:  watching her son grow up.  Sadly, none of this worked and she continued to gain weight, her health continued to deteriorate, and she died in her mid 40's.  

On the other hand, I can think of a few examples in my world where people have hit "rock bottom" and created such a massive reason or "why" that they made incredible changes in their life and thus in their health.  One such lady lost well over 100 pounds by eating better and exercising and now looks FANTASTIC!!  Beyond looking fantastic, she's feeling great physically, and about herself.  She simply had a big enough "why" to stay committed to her goal.

Oh sure, I get that there are reasons that sometimes we fail.  I sometimes have my's be real here, there aren't reasons, there are excuses.  I sometimes come up with a good enough excuse to not exercise for a day, or eat badly for a bit.  It happens to the best of us.  But how long do we sit in those excuses?  That is the issue.  Skipping exercise isn't so bad for a day, but when that day turns into a week, or longer, or a lifestyle, that is the issue.  

If you're not where you want to be with regards to your health, fitness, weight etc and you know it, GOOD!  At least you know it.  First step done!!  Now you have to come up with all the reasons why you need to change, all the pain that you have from not making that change.  Make it real.  Feel it.  What will your life/body be like if you continue down this path in 1 year, 5 years, a decade?  How will you feel about yourself if you don't make the changes?  Then, spin it around and write down and think/dream/feel what it will be like if you DO make the changes you know you need to make?  Get really really good at feeling those emotions for making and NOT making the changes.  Once you have that down, you'll get moving in the right direction.  If you fall off the wagon, re-focus on those reasons again.  See and feel them.  Make it real.  

Then, and ONLY then, will you it happen for you.

If the "why" is big enough, the facts don't count.

Until next time...Be Well!
Dr. Bruce

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