“I just can’t get over my cravings. I’m so bad at this. I’ll never succeed!”
Ever feel like you just focus on things you don’t do well or don’t have, or need to restrict?
You’re not alone.
One of the easiest ways to sell things to people is to create a need. Advertisers know this and try to create a need for products you don’t have. Whether you need them or not.
And popular fitness media is the worst for this!
From the looks of most fitness media, it seems you're worthless unless you live to workout - Unless you devote yourself to looking like a magazine cover model. And this attitude is turning people away from fitness and stopping people from achieving their goals.
This is why I love Thrive Fit, where I work.
At Thrive, we start a new member off very simply.
We usually suggest two or three days a week of training and start with conservative lifestyle and nutrition habits based around supporting the work they do in the gym.
No big changes, just the basics.
We want them to try out the process and see if they like it.
Then, if they’re consistent, in a month or two they they feel and perform a little better than when they came in. And they’re probably a bit leaner too.
The key is to do one or two things really well and to focus on what’s easy to improve right now.
I don’t care what you’re doing wrong.
I don’t care that you struggle with binge eating.
I don’t care that you don’t know what a “goblet squat” is.
I mean, I care but it just doesn’t matter right now. We'll tackle that all in good time.
The important thing is to focus on making the simplest changes to be 1% better every day and eventually, over time you build momentum and conquer your struggles one at a time.
No matter how enthusiastic you are, you can’t do everything at once. It’s just not sustainable.
For example: if a busy mom who hasn’t exercised in years comes in and I say to her:
“Train five days a week, sleep nine hours every night, don’t ever drink alcohol, and no more ice cream for the rest of your life!”
She won’t do it. Oh, sure she might for a while. But it rarely works in the long run.
And nor should it!
Fitness should be about building a life you enjoy, not restricting yourself to a life that leaves you feeling deprived.
Momentum Works Both Ways
It’s very easy to focus on things you’re doing wrong and equally easy to brush off the things you do right.
This isn’t about comparing yourself to someone else (“Look what she can do! I should be able to do that too!”). This is about self improvement one step at time.
Take responsibility for improving whatever is doable right now and focus your efforts there.
When you focus only on what you’re doing wrong, all you see is a list of ways you aren’t good enough. You feel guilty, depressed, ashamed. And the feeling snowballs leading to more guilt, more depression, and less action.
Instead, take the time to appreciate the effort you’ve put in to get you to where you are now. Use it as a tool for empowerment. Count your wins, no matter how small they are.
Sure, everyone has room for improvement and everyone is doing something wrong. That’s a given.
What we forget to appreciate is what we do right, the ways we’re succeeding, the stuff we’ve already accomplished.
Try this out as a way to be a little kinder to yourself:
At the end of every day, keep a success journal. Review everything you did that day and record every win you had, no matter how small. It might seem cheesy at first but the difference in your mindset will build your confidence more than you can imagine.