Are you a Diet and Exercise Procrastinator who longs for better health?
If your thoughts about ‘what it takes’ to make healthy lifestyle changes are negative, and the words exercise and diet make you shudder, read on, my friend.
What comes up for you when you hear the words exercise, diet, and excellent health?
Dread, guilt, shame, denial? Thinking that it’s too much work or just not worth it?
I’m not saying that it’s easy and overnight-like, but the concept is simple if you are open.
2 Big influences we have to first be aware of are:
- Our thoughts. They lead the way during diet and exercise procrastination. This is good news because with awareness and the willingness to work, we can change our thoughts!
We can get jazzed for something because we associate happy thoughts with it. And with happy thoughts, come good feelings. Say, going out with friends for a splurge dinner- easy to anticipate getting dressed and looking forward to great company and tasty food.Or, we can dread something because of the unpleasant thoughts and feelings we associate with it. Like preparing to sweat- the picture in your head may be about wearing tight workout clothes to do exercises that you believe you hate. It’s all based on visualization and beliefs about the upcoming experience, and look what a difference there is in the two feelings.
- Our language and self-labeling. These two things are also key players when it comes to procrastination.
When we speak the words I am a Procrastinator, our behavior automatically follows.
When we decide we are no longer a procrastinator, our behavior will also start to follow- GUARANTEED!
Sometimes we have to lie to ourselves until we grow into our affirmations. (If you have not studied how our subconscious mind works, I would like to encourage you to, it’s SO cool. Besides being fascinating, it normalizes our self-sabotaging behaviors and helps us to improve our ways)!
Being in the Fitness Industry for so many years it has become apparent to me that most cases of procrastination come from 3 simple beliefs:
*To have great health (or a great body, etc.) I have to do things perfectly.
It’s so easy to set ourselves up for failure when things are too rigid, and willpower only goes so far. Instead of rigid and perfect, think progress with baby steps. (But don’t baby yourself)!
*To have great health (or a great body, etc.) I have to deprive myself.
Yes, you will need to change some habits to create change. But not all of them and not all at once. I’m a believer that it’s never necessary to give something up forever unless there is a serious problem with it. (addiction to sugar, caffeine, alcohol, etc.)
*I have failed so many times, why would this time be different?
Perfection doesn’t exist, deprivation isn’t necessary (in this case its a state of mind and how we perceive things), and the past does not equal the future!
It’s important to think one-day-at-a-time because change is a process, not an event. By staying more relaxed around the whole topic of transformation, it can keep you in a good head space.
I want to give you what I believe is the first action step to getting yourself out of procrastination and into better health:
Decide right now that you will get curious!
What we focus on, grows. Think about a time that you were really excited to learn something new or had a new job. Or even when you started dating someone special. Where was your head? How much focus did you put on what was so important to you at that time? Didn’t you get passionate about it and find yourself absorbed in it?
Getting curious and open to seeing things differently is key for the attitude adjustment that will lead the way to an improved lifestyle.
When your mind is open, and you’re looking for positive, you will find it. Research and re-frame your ideas about good foods and bad foods, sweating and moving, and get excited about what you will GAIN from reaching your health and fitness goals!!! Invest in thoughts that can help you take positive actions.
For example: use Pinterest to search for healthy but tasty recipes. (I almost guarantee that you’ll find plenty of things that may help sway you towards possibility!) Then, pick only one. Buy the ingredients, make the recipe and eat it with good expectations. You may like it, you may not- so what? Try another. 🙂
Another example: Convinced you hate the gym? Google home exercise for some options to consider. Or sit down with a pen and paper and recall what activities you may have liked as a child. Get your mind to go to work and get creative, and keep it simple. What if you just put your tennies on right now and walk out your front door. Walk away from your house for 10 minutes, then turn around and come back.
You can move from the diet and exercise procrastinator. Just because you’ve never done it, or it’s been a long time since you have, doesn’t mean that you can’t learn the skills, like the foods, get hooked on the endorphin release from exercise, and influence others to live better!
One last thing; It’s never all or nothing.
Many times, we resist doing the subtle steps because they seem insignificant. If you’ve waited this long anyway, why not give this suggestion a try?
Doing baby steps give a big reward. One check mark at a time and something much greater- momentum and confidence towards the next step!
I promise it works if you’ll trust the process and stay engaged.
Being a procrastinator is a frame of mind, and I hope right now that you will make the decision to take steps to release yourself from the label and the behavior.
Please report back, I would love to know how your curiosity has come into play and how your thoughts have changed your practices! I want to know about your small wins that have helped keep you out of procrastination!