"I wanna get toned" "I want abs" "I want a pro card!" (that one used to be mine)
I hear people's goals every day.
They're usually pretty lofty... like "getting toned" for example.
For 8 years I've had people start working with me, tell me their goals and when I outlined the things they needed to do to get there, I hear, "yeah, I'm not doing that." Or they may not flat out tell me they're not going to do it, but they just don't do it.
Everyone it seems, wants to be "toned" yet few ever actually achieve being "toned". Why?
Because while they think they want those things they don't actually want to do the work required to achieve them.
Which is fine.
But many people also think it's all or nothing. If they aren't willing to do EVERYTHING, often, they stop even doing ANYTHING.
For example... I decided long ago that while the thought of being an IFBB was something I liked, I hated what it would require for me to get there, so I really didn't want it that bad after all. The training and food I'd have to live on to achieve that goal was NOT worth it.
Once I realized that, I could let go of that dream without caring and get busy working on things I DID want to do and that actually did make me happy and my life better.
See, I didn't mean I quit everything and stopped prioritizing eating foods that make me feel good or doing some form of exercise on a regular basis because it's good for me -- it just gave me space to focus on things that made a positive difference in my life instead of constantly beating on myself for the things I felt like I "should" be doing.
Getting real with myself about what I really wanted was one of the things that helped me gain a much better relationship with myself, food and exercise because the whole time I had that goal in the back of my mind I was at war with myself ...trying to force myself to do the things I really did NOT want to do in order to achieve it.
Even now, I still use this approach when setting goals.
For example: every once in a while when I'm getting dressed I notice my butt is losing its shape -- shape that I beat on myself for years to build. I'd love for it to stop doing that and start being round and full like it used to be. I just feel curvier and like my shape better.
BUT... I know the amount of work it took to build it, and I'm just not willing to beat on myself that hard anymore. Maybe someday I will be again, but right now I'm not.
I know this, so while it would be nice for it to look the way it did when I was working harder, I'm not hating myself over it or obsessing or losing sleep over what I "should" be doing or what I feel like I "have to" do.
I've gotten real about the fact that it's just not that important to me right now & I just don't want to.
That realization allows me to let it go so I can focus on other things that matter more -- like just feeling good... which again, requires eating things that make me feel good and getting some movement.
Happiness and feeling good are literally my only two priorities now so I abandon anything that moves me farther from those things... like obsessing over things I used to feel like I "should" do or "have" to do.
So if you're constantly at war with yourself over what you feel like you "need to" do, versus what you "want to" do, try this instead.
Take a look at the biggest goals you set for yourself. Getting toned? Having abs?
Whatever it is.
Are they exciting to you? Are they making you happy to work towards?
Fast forward and pretend you're your future self -- the you that's already achieved that thing you think you want -- and think about what it took to get there.
Then ask yourself do I REALLY want it badly enough to do what it will require me to do to get there, every day between now and then?
If you're beating on yourself for the things you're not doing that you feel like you should be doing or have to do, stop long enough to decide... do I even really want to do that?
Do I want to keep beating the hell out of myself 5 days a week for a rounder butt? Do I care that much? Not even a little bit.
So the bottom line is, two fold:
you don't need to be willing to do EVERYTHING to just do SOMETHING that keeps moving you in better direction. What do you want and what are you realistically willing to do to achieve it? Do they match? No? Then change something.
stop beating on yourself for whatever you feel like SHOULD do or HAVE to do and just get real with yourself about what you're really willing to do. Because if you're beating on yourself all day over should haves and could haves and whatnot, you're not going to be very happy and if you're not happy... what's even the point?! :)
Be happy and do GOOD things for your body today!