We all have an idea of the perfect person we strive to be. The ideal you. What does that look like? Do you strive for a certain performance level? A certain level of fitness where you can sit back and say, “I have arrived.” Don’t pretend like you don’t spend a lot of time daydreaming about it.
My favorite daydream: Running theBostonmarathon. It’s patriots day and it’s pouring rain. With 3 miles to go I take a commanding lead and right before I cross the finish line for the win, I grab a huge American flag from a spectator and wave it high as I cross the finish line, claiming theBostonmarathon for theUnited Statesand ending the reign of the Kenyans!
You will always have something to work on; physically, mentally and emotionally. Does the journey towards that goal really have to suck? It all depends on your ability to contain that which makes it suck: negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself, others negative beliefs, self doubt, and personal tragedies, to name a few.
There’s not a point in your life where you can say that it’s ALL going great. I’m not talking about contentment or the ability to accept your life as it is. What I’m talking about is the myth that you can achieve a life where you have no problems and nothing to work on.
In order to make our way towards our ideal self, we have to steer clear of some obstacles that we have in our lives. Nobody wakes up 20 pounds overweight over night. Recent studies in the New England Journal of Medicine actually go contrary to the popular belief of the holiday weight gain. The study suggests that yearly weight gain is closer to .5 to 1 pound a year. However, this study was done inBethesda,MD using only 195 subjects that lived in the area. It is my opinion that a larger sample size including more states will yield different results.
Nevertheless, my point is that weight gain is slow and gradual: 1-2 pounds one year, a few more the next and yet a few more the following year. Multiply that by 5 years and you are now overweight and have a whole new wardrobe.
The ability to contain the obstacles that will hinder the progress to your goals runs parallel to your ability to increase your awareness. For example, you just want to buy some new pants for work and behold your size fits you small now and you are forced to buy a bigger size. At that point you can ignore it or do something about it.
The good news is that one dress size shouldn’t be that hard to change. However, when one size becomes three or four, the task becomes more difficult.
Spend some time pondering and writing the things down that have a tendency to derail your progress towards your ideal self. The more aware of them you become, the more you are able to contain them. Take care of the squeak before it gets worse and the car ends up living you stranded.