It’s pretty common for people to think that getting healthier simply means eating better, and getting some exercise. And while both of those are usually at the top of list of things that need to be addressed, they’re often not the only things that should have high priority.
The beliefs you hold, both about yourself and about food, the way you think progress should happen, and the whether or not you feel like you are truly worth taking care of, can all have a huge impact on not only your progress, but also the way in which you seek to make change.
While there are a variety a beliefs that can hamper progress, here are three that I see most often.
#1. You believe your progress needs to be qualified.
Have you ever found yourself saying, “I know I’ve lost some weight, but I’m not where I want to be.” Or, “I know I’m eating so much healthier, but I still have so far to go.”
I call it the curse of the “Yeah, but’s”. YEAH, I’ve made progress, BUT I’m not were I should be.
It’s something I hear a lot.
It happens when you compare every bit of progress to the end goal. And no matter what, if progress is measured by the end goal, your progress will always come up short.
Five pounds lost is meaningless because it’s not 30.
One inch off of your waist isn’t exciting because its not 4.
This belief is a surefire way to always feel unsatisfied with your progress. And it’s a great way to never see those end game goals you keep comparing everything to.
The Fix? Drop the “but”. “Yeah, I’ve lost five pounds,
but it’s not the 30 I want to lose.” Stop yourself from saying the last half. It’s not a cure-all, but putting effort into not qualifying your progress can do a lot of good. It acknowledges your progress for what it is – progress. And you can’t get to any goal without making progress first.
Don’t miss the trees for the forest.
And no, that’s not a typo.
2. You believe you don’t deserve it.
I’m not going to lie. This one is tough, and can be a challenging one to get past. But it’s so worth the effort.
The way we view ourselves, and our place in this world directly impacts the things that we feel we deserve. Poor self image, low self-worth, a past that has told us that we are “less than”…all of these things, and more, can leave you feeling like a healthier body isn’t something you deserve, no matter how bad you want it.
And if you don’t feel like you deserve being healthier, or that you aren’t worthy of it, it will never happen. It just wont.
I don’t think there’s a quick fix to this one. There usually isn’t for things that are significant. But that doesn’t mean that there aren’t steps that you can take to begin to combat the lie that you don’t deserve to be the healthiest version of you.
A solid first step is acknowledging the things you believe about yourself. If you don’t believe you are worthy of change, or deserve to be healthier, acknowledge it. Write it down. Tell a friend, or your coach. Then begin to explore why. Was it a parent who beat it in to your head? Was it a string of bad relationships? Figure out what has contributed to these false beliefs. The better you can identify them, the less power they have over you.
It’s really worth mentioning that therapy could be in order. Feeling like we don’t deserve good things can come from very deep seeded issues. Therapy can begin to till the soil and find roots to these beliefs you didn’t know existed. If that thought scares you, I get it. But as someone who has been to therapy at three different points in their life, I can tell you it’s immensely valuable. It’s usually not easy, but if you want to find some roots, you’ve got to get your hands dirty.
#3. You believe you haven’t done anything worth celebrating.
This belief is similar to #1, but different enough that it deserves it’s own numeral.
It’s worth noting the way I phrased this belief. “You BELIEVE you haven’t done anything worth celebrating.” It’s different than you DON’T BELIEVE you’ve done anything worth celebrating. Subtle, but different.
It means there is an active thought that is saying, “none of this is noteworthy. None of this deserves to be celebrated.”
The other is NOT believing. It’s more passive. You can say I’m splitting hairs here, but after coaching people for 12 years, I’ve noticed there is a big difference when someone is actively telling themselves that their efforts aren’t worth celebrating. It’s more harsh, and tends to have a stronger hold.
The challenging thing about holding this belief is that all of your efforts quickly become pointless. There is no value in doing something well, because, in and of it’s self, it’s minimal.
Holding this belief comes from being strongly rooted in one reality, while completely missing out on another. It’s seeing the reality that eating one vegetable wont change anything, while missing the reality that eating vegetables on a regular basis requires you to eat them one at a time.
When someone doesn’t believe their efforts are worth celebrating, the work they need to do to move forward gets really old really quick. If the only way to get to the end of your journey is one step at a time, but there is no value in each step…well, you see where this is going? It’s going nowhere fast.
To combat this, it can be really helpful to write out the things you’re doing differently in your health journey. List the things you’re actively putting energy into to make changes in your health. For example, what you are eating differently, how you spend your time differently, how you move differently, how you prepare and look ahead differently, etc.
Listing out all of these things can begin to paint a more comprehensive picture. Maybe eating one vegetable doesn’t feel like it’s a big deal to you, but if along with that vegetable you have two more in the day, a piece of fruit, 20 minutes of activity, a few more glasses of water, and an extra hour of sleep…well, now those little “meaningless” actions are starting to look like quite a lot.
Remember, if it was as simple as moving some more, and eating a little better, you’d probably already be where you want to be. Part of the reason your attempts are often challenging may be because you’re not addressing beliefs you hold that are in direct opposition to your goals.
These have to be addressed.
If you’d like to learn more about how you can do that, while eating better and moving more, shoot me a message. I’d love to chat.
If you’ve found this helpful, or know of someone that could benefit from reading this post, please share. I appreciate it!