7/18/2016 0 Comments
The thought that you can build a habit in 21-30 days not completely accurate. Can you believe just 8% of people in the world achieve their New Years Resolutions? I bet if you took a room of 100 people and asked them their New Years Resolutions, close to 50% would mention something about health or fitness. The UK ComRes did a poll and 66% of the respondents made it a month or less, and 80% of them couldn't make it 3 months. European Journal of Social Psychology found it took 66 days to build a real habit.
I decided to look at myself as an example because after 7 years of on and off inconsistency I have been able to stay consistent in this area of my life now for over 6 months. Which is weird because in the past I really wanted to be fit & healthy. I really wanted to make change but I could never seem to keep it up. I began overweight when I was younger then as I got older and grew up I became skinnier from growth and exercise. Then I put on a little bit of muscle over the course of 6-ish years from sheer on and off spurts, not because I was really consistent. It made me truly wonder what was different this time compared to last. It hasn’t been perfect, and I have faltered slightly off track but I have never jumped ship.
The identity we as humans tend to give ourselves. The person we tell ourselves everyday who we are.
I look at all of this then look at my life and I can see a lot of it and a little extra. You see forming a habit I believe isn’t exactly black and white but we do know a lot. Jim Rohn and Tony Robbins explain it best. The day your life turns around is the day you make a decision. As Tony says “It doesn’t take years to change it takes one moment where you finally say enough is enough.” That decision is bred from a true enough is enough thought, where you make the decision to change, and continue it with true inner desire to make a change.
For me that was in January 2016 where I looked at myself in the mirror and I asked myself, “How did I let this happen? How did I get to this point?" I then subconsciously asked myself “How in the world would I build my product in health and nutrition if I don’t have success or enough knowledge in the space myself.” From that point it was literally no question on whether I was going to get healthy or get fit, I was completely 100% onboard and I burned the boats. There was absolutely no way after returning back to that point I would ever go back again.
I dove head first spending hours a day listening, reading and digesting everything I could in health and nutrition. From the best of the best. I spent money on it when I couldn’t really afford to. I spent hours of time when I should have been sleeping, studying or working. I was sold and I knew I wanted to make the change in myself and the world.
I broke up my goals from my 5-10 years of building a company around the technology products I want to create. To the goal I set to reach 7-8% body fat by December 2016, 10-12% body fat by August, and 15% body fat by May. I wanted to read 3 books a month, 2 of which in health and nutrition, and I wanted to spend some of the time and money I had on learning. I am sitting right now in July at 8% body fat and I have read/listened to around 50-55 books. It wasn’t because I spent 12 hours a day focused on those 2 goals either, I just spent my down time bringing me towards my goal. Instead of listening to music in my car I would to audios, I've listened to well over 350 hours worth of audios or podcasts in just this year alone.
I began identifying myself as a health influencer. I began telling myself and putting it out there that I’m here to learn, here to grow and make an impact in the health space. It became known to those around me that I am becoming more knowledgeable in the health space.
I also did small things along the way that contributed to helping me stick to my health goals. I basically made the majority of the food in my house be primarily healthy. Aside from a few snacks and treats most of the food is real wholesome food. When you don’t have unhealthy food in your home you’re less likely to eat it. That’s one of the easy life hacks to eating healthy, is by forcing yourself to choose healthy or no food.
I also began creating a little healthy trick for myself. Every time I felt like eating unhealthy I would grab one M&M or a dark chocolate mango square (these small healthier snacks). I would grab one, not 5, not 100, 1 and then I would go make real food. I believe this helped a lot because I would get the small instant gratification but I would never indulge myself. I would then follow that up with making myself a real meal. I think that plays two parts, one I would essentially reward myself for controlling it but also I would satisfy my hunger afterwords with real food.
I burned the boats on my nutrition as well, I didn’t give myself an out with full blown cheat days. I neglected tons of sweets, even almost on my birthday. I turned down going out a lot early on to stay on pace. And even though many people say don’t try to completely change everything at once or you will shock yourself and fall back, I completely changed my meals. I completely cut out majority of sugar out of 95% of my week. I lowered salt very heavily where I could. I believe by not giving myself and out it helped me adhere much longer and much easier. Not to mention because of that I rid my mind, and it’s dopamine, and neuro-receptors of sugar and salt. Which helped cause me not to have all these cravings to eat food constantly.
What Does it Really Take to Create a Goal ?
Well I think there are several moving parts. I believe you need to reach a point of no turning back and from there you have to make a decision with a true inner desire. You can't say that you're 90% or 95% committed, you have to be all in. You can’t just act without any intelligence you need goals for yourself to go after. It’s very important to have reasons to stick to your goal. Not surface level BS, I want to get rich or I want abs. I wanted to change because I never wanted to go back and I had to to get closer to my future self and to be able to create what I want to create.
From there you need to do everything in your favor to help you stick to it. It helps to “burn the boats”, have no plan B. However, you need to make your environment as positive as possible, meaning you need to do everything you can that will not cause friction with you and your goals. For example how I stopped buying unhealthy food and I turned down going out many times early on.
Then after you created the back end mindset and strategy behind your habit and goals you need to take massive action. The best is immersion. If you can immerse yourself and cause yourself to fully identify with your new self or your future self (what you want to create) then your day to day habits tend to be those that keep you in alignment. You're always fighting with your current instant gratification self and you're future self, it just is up to you who wins in the moment.
Behind anything you want you need the right mindset to get you going and keep you going. That needs to be followed up with proper strategies and plans that allow for your work to be frictionless and intelligent in it's direction. Then once you follow that up with complete full immersion in who you are and take massive action there’s no stopping you.
I would LOVE to get your thoughts and feedback on this. Is it missing anything ?
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