Simple Ain’t Easy…Isn’t that a country-western song??
Look…I don’t know where the idea started that just because something is SIMPLE that it is also EASY. With the onslaught of the New Year; New You BS out there, everyone would have you believing that getting off the couch, putting down the remote and chucking the ice cream container into the trash is, well, just that easy. It’s not. If it were, we would have no obesity problem in this country and we’d all be flaunting our six-pack abs.
Getting up and getting moving is a simple concept.
Eating veggies instead of eating cake is a simple idea.
No advanced degrees required to figure out how to do those things. But none of that is easy if you’ve been sedentary for years or you have deeply ingrained habits and attitudes about food. Behavior modification; changing habits…those are tough things to do successfully.
And sure, you can simply join a gym, buy a bag of protein powder, or set up a treadmill in your basement but without the internal motivation and the external accountability, those purchases will likely go to waste and you’ll be back to feeling frustrated and defeated.
How do you get to “hey that was easy,” when there’s no Staples button to push for your health and wellness?
Truth bomb here…you may NEVER get to easy. However, you can get to creating habits and behaviors that are EASIER and more ATTAINABLE because you’ve learned the strategies and actions needed to change your mindset. Read on to understand how you can make it more simple and natural.
Celebrate your past SUCCESSES. Don’t tell me you’ve never had any success as it relates to health and wellness. At some point you’ve done something awesome like lose 10 lbs. or run a 5k. Or, maybe you just downloaded MyFitnessPal and tracked your food for a month. Those are all WINS. They demonstrate that you have been in a place where you were committed to making a change. So, write down as many wellness wins that you can think of to help refocus your mindset and motivate you to try again.
Find your WHY. In college your reason for wanting to lose weight might have solely centered around looking good in a swimsuit on spring break. Fast forward 20+years and your reason for wanting to lose weight might be to have the energy and stamina required to keep up with your toddler. Or, you’ve been told by your doctor that your blood pressure is too high. Funny how life and priorities change, right? Fill in the blank to help you figure out WHY being healthier is important to YOU (not your spouse, partner, friend, etc.). “If I were healthier/more fit, I would be able to_________________”. Then, write it on a sticky note and put it somewhere that you’ll see every day. This will remind and motivate you to take action when you’re not really feeling it.
Set just 1 GOAL at a time. When New Year’s rolls around we like to go completely overboard on goals. I’m going to lose 20 lbs., reorganize my entire house, read 25 books, and learn a new language this year. We overwhelm our brains before we can even get started. Then, usually we give up on the goals by February and only think about them again around December when we are reminded that we didn’t accomplish any of them. It’s a vicious cycle that we perpetuate on ourselves. So, this year, I challenge you to just set 1 goal for your health and wellness at a time. Goals should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time Bound) and they should be flexible, giving you the ability to rework them on a monthly or quarterly basis. Start with one goal for the next 90 days. Then focus relentlessly on that goal. When you achieve it, set a new goal so that by the end of the year, you’ve accomplished 3-4 things that have made you healthier.
Plan for the PITFALLS. You are going to face roadblocks and barriers along the journey. Knowing what they are and having a plan to deal with them puts you in control. Let’s say you are traveling for a week for work and your meetings start at 7 a.m. and end at ??? (because, you know, dinner and then drinks after dinner). Be ok with the fact that your workout schedule might be off. Set realistic expectations for how often you’ll be able to exercise. Map out your meals by looking at the restaurant’s menu ahead of time and taking some healthy snacks with you for the road. Go in with eyes wide open so you don’t completely derail all your hard work.
Seek the right SUPPORT. Your friends and family are well-meaning. They want to help you and be supportive of your goals. Here’s the harsh truth…they are usually terrible at keeping you accountable. They love you and, as such, can’t always be honest with you. So, you need someone who is removed from your situation and can be firm with you in a kind way to keep you focused. Working with a personal trainer or health coach is a great way to have accountability without jeopardizing personal relationships or making it super awkward at family get togethers.
So…there you go. My advice to you for making change simpler. It still may not easy, but these strategies work and you can use them NOW! It will never be a perfect process but it can be one that is less stressful. Be flexible and patient with yourself.
Tired of starting over with your health and wellness goals?
Then I invite you to set up a free Well Chat with me. We’ll just talk about what your concerns and challenges are, and how I would recommend approaching them. If it makes sense for us to work together, great. If it’s not the right time, that’s ok too. But I’m still going to give you my best advice to help you through whatever challenge you’re facing. I may tell you something you don’t want to hear but I will always give you my honest, unbiased advice with no hard sales pitch.
In the meantime, check out my new page detailing some of my coaching programs and go through the archives of my blog and read some of that stuff! I give away a ton of info that you can use right away! Finally…A head’s up on a new program I’m offering (it isn’t even published yet) for the busy professional who wants daily, weekly, monthly accountability and coaching. This is for the exec or entrepreneur who needs a trusted partner to help them set goals and adhere to them for the long term. It’s called Coach on Demand and it’s freakin’ awesome. It’s like having a health coach and personal trainer with you 24/7. Well – probably 16/5 – I need SOME downtime! Message me if you want some info.
Helping you with your wellness is both SIMPLE and EASY! Let’s talk soon!