Transitioning into a healthy lifestyle, especially starting off alone, was certainly not easy. There were many good days, but there were also many days of doubt, discouragement, and shame, along with days where I simply lost self-confidence and belief in the possibility of my actually achieving the goal I had set for myself and the vision I had. But it was through lots of reflection and self-discovery that I was able to understand myself as well as my needs and wants in life. What’s more? Developing the right mindset, self-belief, mindfulness, and a lot of sacrifice were pursuits that helped shape my habits and behaviors for the better.
Before you embark on your journey towards a healthy lifestyle, ask yourself why? Why do you want to live healthier? Why do you want to eat better? Why do you want to exercise? Determining your personal why will give you a true purpose and reason to live when working towards your goals.
For example, when it comes to nutrition, it’s important to differentiate between what you’re eating and why you’re eating. If you go with the notion of what you’re eating, you’ll just eat or snack on whatever it is you’re eating, be it healthy or unhealthy, without a real purpose. Maybe you’re satisfying your sweet tooth, eating based on emotions, or simply eating because you’re hungry. But when you know why you’re eating, then you’ll eat with a purpose. You’ll start to pay more attention to the foods you put into your body. You’ll start to be more mindful and aware of your eating habits and behavior—all of which will help you eat healthier. It’s the same thing for exercise and developing the right mindset. Why do you want to exercise? Why do you want to change your mentality?
Simon Sinek, author and motivational speaker, wrote a book that I absolutely love called Start with Why. In his book, he mentions a Golden Circle which consists of three parts: why, how, and what. The why is at the center of the circle, followed by the how and then the what making up the outer portion.
The what is something you can easily describe? It’s what you do. Keeping this relevant to health fitness, it can simply be something like ‘I do Crossfit.’
The how explains the process and how you go about doing something. Sticking to Crossfit, perhaps this would entail you explaining your workout of the day, or your “WOD” as Crossfitters like to call it.
The why explains your purpose. Why are you doing Crossfit? The answer can be something like ‘I do Crossfit because I enjoy it and love the feeling I get after the workout.’
So, why start with the ‘why’? As Sinek says, knowing your why gives you a reason and purpose to exist. Why do you want to live a healthy lifestyle? Why do you spend one hour of your day exercising? Or, why do you want to get to that point? Self-reflection and digging deep into your thoughts will help you understand this. You just need to spend some time thinking about it, and doing it.
Whenever you are feeling frustrated, unmotivated, or discouraged over not seeing results, or when any other obstacle gets in your way, always remember why you started. This is the reason why I want you to write it down. Remembering your why will allow you to bounce back, and not bounce backwards.
So, what’s your why for wanting to be a healthier version of yourself?
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