Browse Tag: goals

DO WE REALLY NEED MORE DISCIPLINE?

self discipline

I know all the right things to do . . . diet, exercise, etc. . . I just lack the discipline to do everything I should on a daily basis. Any suggestions?”

In one area or another, we have all felt like this.

We have all been disappointed with our efforts to “change”.

And most of us have then blamed it on our lack of discipline or will-power.

Self-Discipline, more or less, amounts to this:

Doing things we know we should do (but don’t really want to do).

Do we really need more of this? I don’t think so.

I think we just need to start finding reasons and ways to actually want to do them.

Here are 2 questions to ask yourself to get you started in the right direction.

WHY ARE YOU DOING IT?

I think there are 2 camps when it comes to this answer.

  • Camp 1 does it for others. They do it to please and to gain recognition. They do it, in large part, because that’s what they should do (or at least that’s what others keep telling us). The goal of getting healthy or fit, for them, is a means to “stay in the spotlight” or at the very least, to become accepted.
  • Camp 2 does it for themselves. They do it for the love and do not second guess their passions. They do it because they realize how limiting their unhealth is or can be. The goal of getting healthier, both in mind and body, is so they are better able to give their gift.

Let’s be honest, we all have been part of both camps.

We all have done things for other people. So how did that go? For myself, I quit football. I quit the military. And I quit a host of other things that I couldn’t find a real purpose in.

Camp 2 has been a totally different story.  I couldn’t quit writing, training, and helping others it if I wanted to.

Funny how that works.

Before someone can venture into camp 2, however, and use the pursuit of health and fitness as a means to give your gift / love, they have to get real on what the end goal is ( ie, what’s your purpose?).

“I want to get healthier / more fit because _____”

The answer will decide whether you are able to stick with your new behaviors or not.

HOW ARE YOU DOING IT?

Even if you have an awesome “Why”, you can still sabotage your “discipline” by making things tougher than they should be. Here are a couple of suggestions to help with that:

1. Make it fun

Boring exercise doesn’t last. Neither does eating flavorless food. If we want to make this a long-term thing, we have to find ways to make it fun and engaging. For this, find people, gyms, workouts, games/sports, food, recipes, etc. – that are all fun! It takes experimentation and seeing what is out there, but this is more than necessary.

2. Start small

Like I talked about in Advice For Resolutioners, chewing off more than you can swallow only makes you choke. Don’t try to change more than 1 thing at a time (I recommend establishing the exercise habit first) and don’t do something that is scary and extremely uncomfortable to you (go slow, take your time, and just do enough to be moving towards your goal).

3. Do it early in the day

In the morning is when we have the most will-power. If you are really finding it hard to “stick” a new behavior, make it priority #1. This may mean waking up earlier so you can do it before work, but if the “Why” is there, you’ll do it. .

4. Get enough sleep

Without proper sleep, anything becomes hard.  Don’t let this be your limiting factor. Shoot for 8 a night on average.

5. Harness the power of belief

As humans, we are our own self-fulfilling prophecies. Little placebos if you will. What holds more weight than some science, facts, or these words on this screen, is your belief in them. Think you lack discipline?Your future will show it. Believe in yourself and your abilities. You will, no doubt, become your thoughts.

do we really need more self discipline?

ARE YOU GOING TO DO IT?

Once you have the WHY and the HOW, nothing will be stopping you.

And with those, you will literally feel compelled to do it.

No self-discipline required…

YOUR RESOLUTION: THE 3 STEPS YOU MUST TAKE

[FITNESS GOALS]

Are you sick of people telling you how to make these yet?

I sure as hell am.

Sick of bloggers discussing “smart goals”, gurus discussing “passion and motivation”, and especially sick of marketers proffering the idea that I can do it “quick and painless”.

So sick that I felt I had to write this (oh, the irony).

Now, this isn’t common knowledge (I wouldn’t waste your time like that) nor is this your typical strategy. I even had one commenter who called me a “masochist” (really? haha).

If you have a big hairy audacious goal this year, however, then this will be for you.

Below are the 3 steps to dominating goals (the Non-Gym way). Once you know what you want, here is what you do:

Click those links above to learn more or just go here.

Good luck.

FAT LOSS, MUSCLE GROWTH, AND THE ARCHER’S PARADOX

arrow2

FOCUS LESS

There is power in the ability to see the trees and the forest at the same time.

Archers, for example, aim slightly off the target to hit the middle (that’s the paradox).

They do this not only because the arrow bends (and throws the trajectory off slightly), but because over-focusing causes less accuracy.

When aiming for our targets, fat loss or mass gain, it’s no different. Overfocus here causes us to zoom in on only a couple of variables (be that calories or some certain “rule”) while neglecting the rest. Often, it is our health that pays the biggest price. Like I talked about in Why Chasing 6 Pack Abs May Make You Fatter, once our health goes, so does our results.

WE DON’T HAVE TO AIM AT THE CENTER

I’ve had clients lose twenty-to-thirty pounds without giving them a diet just like I, myself, have gained muscle without focusing on muscle growth.

The key is to aim slightly off to the side.

  • Instead of dieting and counting calories, eat more foods (greens, fiber) that cause you to naturally eat less.
  • Instead of adding more arm and chest exercises to build your upper body, do hormone-stimulating exercises like squats and deadlifts.
  • Instead of logging 5 hours a week on the treadmill, sleep more.

The point is that THIS is all related.

If you focus on changing one variable, you risk changing them all. If you do not know which variables these are, then failure is likely.

HOW TO USE PROCRASTINATION

using procrastination

You’re putting something off.

I don’t know what it is, but you are.

So am I.

The truth is, we all have something that we should be doing right now, but for whatever reason we aren’t. Rather than explain how to beat this procrastination, instead I want to show you how you to become better at it.

There is no sense in denying whats in our blood: We are phenomenal at delaying important action.

This quote (stolen from Jon Goodman) explains this nature well:

“Procrastinators seldom do absolutely nothing; they do marginally useful things, like gardening or sharpening pencils or making a diagram of how they will reorganize their files when they get around to it. Why does the procrastinator do these things? Because they are a way of not doing something more important. If all the procrastinator had left to do was to sharpen some pencils, no force on earth could get him [to] do it.

However, the procrastinator can be motivated to do difficult, timely and important tasks, as long as these tasks are a way of not doing something more important.”– John Perry

This last sentence (bolding is mine)  is where the gold is.

So what does this mean?

In order to do the things we have been puttin up on a pedestal, we have to make them less important. We don’t do this by simply believing they are but rather by putting more important stuff on our plate.

AIM ABOVE YOUR MARK

  • If your goal is to start working out 3 times a week, aim instead to compete in the Crossfit games.
  • If you have been putting off writing for magazines because “it’s important” (like I have), aim  instead to write a book.

Whatever it is you want to do, you have to make it seem less important (because these are the type of activities that us procrastinators like to do).

Don’t be realistic, be audacious.

This is how we use procrastination.