The owner of Portside, Sara, has recently brought up a good point related to nutrition and fitness. She said that when faced with a situation where you must give something up due to financial or other factors- most people immediately quit the things that are designed to improve their health and quality of life. Can you blame them/us? Think about it, when the schools are forced to cut programs, what do they cut? The answer is all the programs they don’t value necessary to keep such as art, physical education, health etc. When Sara asked me the very same question (because I am a school teacher), I was astonished that I had never thought about it they way she was trying to convey. We are trained as children to leave behind these types of programs and therefore have not established enough value to ensure our health is priority.
Instead of eliminating unnecessary aspects like alcohol, dining out, Starbucks and much more- we immediately get rid of our gym membership or nutrition program. Why do we do that? Why do we elect to dump the very thing that is meant to be a positive influence on us mentally and physically? The removal of those types of programs from school could be a factor, but there are so many other reasons like: time management, confidence, enjoyment, and impatience. However, I have concluded that the true reasons are because of perception and value. We believe that just because we go to the gym, improve eating, or both that we will all the sudden look good and feel good about ourselves. These things take time to achieve and for most don’t come easily.
How do we correct this issue? Find your why for wanting to make a change. It must be good, it must make you emotional, it must hold power over you. A swimsuit or a pair of jeans won’t do the trick. WHY do you want to be here on Earth for as long as possible? WHY do you NOT want to end up in a nursing home? WHY do you want to be able to move well as you age? Will your vice be enough when you can’t live your life the way you want? I am not claiming that better eating habits and working out will fix everything, but I am claiming that it’s a better option over not doing anything. Most of us wake up every day and brush our teeth, bathe, and all the little things in between. We will MAKE time for drinking, hanging out with friends, doing favors for people, committing to a club- but most of us don’t take care of our body. Discover your values, discover your why, and then decide if letting go of your gym membership or nutrition program is the best for you.
Try this simple three step process for deciding what to eliminate:
1. Make sure there is a need to eliminate something. Sometimes we like to make knee-jerk reactions to situations and don’t take the time to think things through.
2. Ask yourself this question for anything you are trying to keep or eliminate:
a. Does this align with what I find valuable?
b. Does this make a lasting long-term improvement in my life?
c. What would happen if I didn’t have this in my life?
3. If it doesn’t align with your value, your why, make a lasting positive improvement in your life, if it makes no difference whether you have it or not- then get rid of it.