September is the new January. Here's what to do about it.
You hear that?!?!
Know what it is?
It’s the sound of exhales throughout the World from Moms and Dads whose kids are finally going back to school.
Of course we love our kids! Of course they’re adorable. Of course we’ll miss them. But, sometimes, the saying is true…time apart makes the heart grow fonder.
The end of June is fun, July is a blast but come the last few weeks of August, the kids start getting a leeetle restless. In turn, Moms and Dads suffer.
So without further ado: Welcome back Mom and Dad. Welcome back! 🙂
Don’t have kids? You’ll still learn a lot from this email. Promise.
Total Reading Time of this post: 55 minutes. Kidding.
September is the new January for so many of us…
I remember as a kid all the resolutions I’d make every September for the school year.
My recurring resolution:
“Okay, THIS year I’m going to study every night for 30 minutes. This way, I don’t have to cram the day before the test.”
Ahahaha! That would last like 3 days.
I think so many of us are programmed to make resolutions for September because of the school year.
WE’VE ALL HEARD IT…
A majority of us who make resolutions don’t keep them (some statistics say as much as 86% of people don’t keep them).
Why are resolutions so hard to keep?
Well…Resolutions are all about change.
So the question really is: Why is change so damn hard?
And I think we can all agree it is.
Otherwise, every person would be the ideal version of themselves, if not all the time, most of the time. Every person (well at least the self-aware among us) would be more patient, compliant, and reliable along with many other qualities we seek to improve in ourselves.
But there’s more to it than that.
When we want to change something, we’re uncovering a desire.
Let’s use….hmmm, I got one….eating right and exercising as an example. What’s the reason for wanting to eat right and exercise?
Because we want to feel (and look) as good as we can for ourselves.
So a part of us wants to do the necessary things in order to feel that way — namely eat right and exercise *consistently*
A part of us wants to stay the same — eating indulgently and doing other things with our time besides exercising.
This causes cognitive dissonance — here in referred to as CD.
My definition of cognitive dissonance (CD): the discomfort we feel when we have two conflicting desires.
Now that we have these two conflicting desires there will always be CD.
1. We actually eat right and exercise consistently (this is the hardest thing to do) aka take action
2. We find ways to rationalize NOT taking action (this is the easiest and most common thing to do)
Some things we might say to ourselves:
“I’ll wait until I have more time.” “Being healthy and fit isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.” “I only live once. (YOLO!)” “It’s too expensive to eat healthy.” And on and on…
The rationalizations we come up with make perfect sense in our minds…until they don’t.
The purpose of these rationalizations: To reduce the CD — this is known as dissonance reduction.
Until we start to see through them.
Until we see ourselves in a picture. Or in the mirror. Or we try something on and we hate how we look and feel.
And suddenly, we wish we were in better shape. We wish we had more energy.
We realize that desire never went away. We just covered that desire up with a pile of rationalizations.
TWO WAYS TO GET WHAT YOU WANT
Actually getting what you want aka doing the work necessary to get it or changing what you want aka rationalizing with ourselves that we don’t really want it — whatever “it” might be.
We do this with so many aspects of our lives. Not only in fitness.
THE ROADMAP TO SUCCESS (AND HAPPINESS)
Chris Paul, the all-star point guard for the Los Angeles Clippers, said this after winning 11 straight games this past NBA season:
“It’s good when you win. I told everyone on the team, the food tastes better. The music sounds better. You sleep a little bit better. Everything is a little bit better when you win. We just have to keep it going.”
They went onto win 17 straight games.
Even if you’re not a basketball fan this resonates.
For him…winning is simply winning basketball games. But it’s also way more fun. Everything is better. LIFE is better.
For us, I think, winning (and happiness) is working towards what we truly desire, and getting more of what we really want.
So many people have these desires yet never act on them. Not taking consistent action on something that we want (as much as our short term / irrational mind tries to convince us otherwise) doesn’t feel good. It wears on us.
I think a big part of why clients report being so much happier is because they’re finally taking consistent action on something that’s so important to them.
Either we’re working towards what we really want or we’re not.
As I like to remind you, existing is easy. Anyone can exist.
Living is harder. It takes some work.
Then there’s thriving which I think we all want to do. Thriving, though, takes a lot of work.
Chris Paul is clearly thriving.
Do you think he and his teammates were having more fun winning than the teams that were losing? Of course!
Were they having more fun even though it took a ton of work and effort to get to where they were? Of course!
THE ONLY WAY TO CHANGE OUR OUTCOMES IS TO CHANGE OUR ACTIONS
If we keep on eating and exercising the way we always have, we’re going to keep on looking and feeling the way we always do.
Changing our actions is very hard because it’s uncomfortable.
Change by nature is uncomfortable.
For example, typically, if a plate of cookies appeared in front of us, we’d dig in.
The more comfortable thing to do in the moment — the easiest thing to do – would be to take a few cookies and eat them.
The harder — the more uncomfortable thing to do — would be to skip the cookies and save our indulgences for when it’s really and truly worthwhile.
Or let’s say it’s after a long day of work, and we don’t feel like exercising.
So we don’t. We plop on the couch and choose the more comfortable thing to do….watch TV. Rather than the more uncomfortable thing to do — actually exercising.
HOW DO WE KNOW IF OUR ACTIONS ARE LEADING US IN THE RIGHT WAY?
Whenever we have a choice — let’s try to choose the harder — the more uncomfortable route — the majority of the time.
In other words: Discomfort is our compass.
I guarantee that if you do, success will happen. You will get more of what you want.
Because when we’re changing our actions, our outcomes will change too.
Most people spend their days looking forward to the extremely rare moments when everything goes right. When there is no discomfort at all.
When there are no temptations, the gym isn’t too crowded, it’s not too cold outside, they got 7.5 hours of sleep the night before, their shelves are fully stocked, their kids are behaving, their boss is being nice…
But imagine how much of an advantage we’d have if we spent our time maximizing those moments when it doesn’t. When discomfort is right in front of our faces.
Again, this doesn’t only apply to fitness.
THE REAL PURPOSE OF “WINNING”
No this isn’t a Charlie Sheen reference. The real purpose of winning — of getting more of what we want in our lives is increased happiness.
And we have two choices:
We can either remain where we are, or we can work towards what we really want for ourselves — even though it’ll require some effort and work and discomfort.
Do you think Chris Paul is regretting a single second of effort and discomfort he’s endured to get to where he is?
Too often we give up what we MOST want for what we (mistakenly) think we want in the moment — less discomfort.
THE MAGIC INGREDIENT
And yes, I’m extremely biased. But you know what? I’ve seen what it can do for literally thousands of people.
It’s daily and personal accountability + support + a system to monitor and track your progress.
Otherwise, it’s very hard to sustain the effort required in order to get to where we want to be. Otherwise, it’s very hard to consistently push through the discomfort.
There’s a reason why the most successful people in all walks of life have a ton of support.
You know what’s uncomfortable? Admitting that we might need some help.
Hint: Are you in the same place you were a year ago?
The discomfort we might endure acknowledging the fact that we’re “jogging in place” is more tolerable than the disdain we usually feel when we’re not progressing.
REMEMBER THOSE FRIENDS WHO DROVE YOU CRAZY ASKING YOU QUESTIONS ABOUT THEIR BOYFRIEND / GIRLFRIEND
You know EXACTLY what they should do? Yet they insist on doing the same thing over and over?
“I know he likes me.” “I’m telling you…she’s into me.”
This is after like the 1000th time they’re upset by that person.
“He/she makes me happy when I’m with them, though!”
As they say — for many people, “Better the devil you know.”
You know why people do that?
Because it’s more comfortable.
It’s more comfortable than ending it, moving on and finding someone better for you.
It seems amazing how many people would prefer to “jog in place” when it comes to their health and fitness year after year — rather than get some help and get the body they’ve always dreamed of once and for all.
But when we understand why they’re doing it – it makes a lot of sense. Not us, though. We’re smarter than that!
The 2013-2014 School Year IS GOING TO BE THE YEAR OF…
DISCOMFORT. Discomfort always leads to results.
I INVITE YOU TO JOIN ME IN MAKING THE 2013 SCHOOL YEAR THE YEAR OF DISCOMFORT FOR YOU.
THE BEST PRODUCTIVITY TOOL YOU’VE EVER ENCOUNTERED…
One of my clients told me the best productivity tool he’s ever encountered is better health.
Focusing on your health will make you happier but it’ll also allow you to do everything else better.
Choice by choice let’s choose the discomfort whenever possible.
And slowly but surely, we’ll start getting more of what we want.
IF YOU’RE TRULY HONEST WITH YOURSELF…
Will you be able to continually push through the discomfort?
(Don’t you think if you could, you would have already?)
Consider getting someone to personally hold you accountable on a daily basis. Someone who has been there and done it. Someone to give you objective and unconditional support on a daily basis. Someone who has literally helped thousands of people get (and stay) in amazing shape.
It’ll guarantee your results.
Consider joining MyBodyTutor. I truly live for what I do and I’m extremely confident MBT can help you get the body of your dreams. So much so that I offer a 100% money back guarantee.
Here’s to a really uncomfortable 2013 school year…aka highly successful year.
Ready to see amazing results and take control of your health and fitness? Learn more about MBT right now by clicking here. You won’t regret it.