How many of you have aspired (resolved) to the top New Year’s Resolution to lose weight and/or get in shape? Can I get a show of hands? I’m right there with you! How many of you will raise your hand that you’re still on that track, say a month from now? Six months from now? Oh, the number of hands are dwindling quickly!
Why is it we have the best of intentions yet fail at their success? It’s because we decide to go from where we are to where we want to be in one fell-swoop and for most, that is just too big of a jump! I invite you to look at your goals a little differently today.
First, what is your ultimate goal? To “get in shape” or “to lose weight” are too vague. Be specific: how much weight do you want to lose, what does getting in shape mean to you, what does eating healthier entail? Write down your clarified goal.
Next, spend a few minutes visualizing yourself reaching that goal. See yourself effortlessly running that race or looking trim and fit, see how great your clothes look on you, the responses of your friends and family, or the number on your scale or blood pressure reading.
Once you have a visual firmly planted, how does reaching your goal FEEL? Are you proud of your commitment and success? Are you feeling strong and confident? Are you feeling empowered and in control of your life? This, the feeling state, is what you want to capture! This is your true impetus toward success. Write down how you WILL feel when you’ve reached your goals.
Sorry to bring you back down for this next step, but I want you to connect with how you’re feeling about your state of health NOW. When you look in the mirror are you happy or unsatisfied with your appearance? Do you get annoyed with yourself for not making time to exercise or for slipping up and having that ice cream? Do you feel weak and overwhelmed with the distance between where you are and where you want to be in terms of fitness? Good! Hold onto that a minute…write it down.
Now let’s get real! You didn’t get out of shape or gain weight overnight, it took time. It will take time to reverse. You may have bad habits you will need to replace with good habits, you may have to rearrange your schedule to make time for fitness, you may have to learn to cook healthy meals and avoid dining out. Look at what changes you will make toward reaching your goal and write those down.
At this point you know your ultimate goal, you know where you are now, and you know the steps between, but more importantly you know the feeling states of where you are and where you want to be. Day to day, moment to moment, aspire toward your end goal, but do so with the simple thought of moving incrementally toward improving your FEELING state.
For example, I want to eat a healthier breakfast, but I have the option of a veggie omelet or blueberry pancakes. I love blueberry pancakes–the texture, the sweetness, the way they smell…they make me FEEL happy! However, if I eat those pancakes without considering my desire to eat healthy and lose weight, I will later feel guilty, annoyed with myself, discouraged. Why go there? Instead, I look at the omelet and consider how I will feel with that choice–I will feel empowered for making the right choice, I will have moved one step up the feel good AND health ladders! It’s one little step, but taking these sorts of steps repeatedly will make a difference!
No matter where you’re at, consider how you feel and what you can do to feel a little better and move in that direction! Your attitude will improve, your energy level will rise, and before you know it, you’re enjoying the process of moving toward health because you’re enjoying the process of reaching for better feelings! Trust me, I know.
Once you get into this habit of looking for the better feeling place, you will know when you slip. When that happens, simply turn around and take action that moves you in the direction of the better feeling. Remember, in any given moment, you have the CHOICE to feel better or to feel worse. It’s up to you, but if you truly want to reach your goals, you know which way to move!
Make it a great day!