What three motivational words can you say to yourself that will put your exercise program into overdrive and make your fitness dreams come true?
Too often we approach our fitness routines with the thought “I have to,” and it produces a counterproductive attitude toward our fitness program. Say both phrases out loud (if you are in a public place you can wait until you get home … or not) and pay attention to how you feel inside your body. “I have to” produces dread and a “heavy” feeling. “Want for“ it produces an extra boost in your stride and a joy associated with whatever you want to do.
How I used this phrase to help me.
I’ll be honest, exercising is not difficult at all. I just set a plan, follow it, and adapt along the way. It’s one of the reasons I became a personal trainer; It has been quite easy for me. But there are goals that I have had that have really challenged me mentally and emotionally. In fact, I’m going through one right now.
In February I dropped precaution and hired a French teacher to, well, teach me French. I knew French when I was little, but I lost it when we moved to the United States. And for as long as I can remember I have wanted to learn it again. So I started researching, looked for a teacher, and found Sabine. Born in France, she has a PhD in French Studies and is a teacher … DING DING DING! I stalked her and got her to meet me, and after a nice chat I knew it would work. So even though I was still trying to build my business, take care of a baby, and get to know a new city, I got engaged. I told her that I would be with her for at least a year and we started.
(PS: There are a lot of really good teaching points in this last paragraph on achieving your goals. You may want to go back and read it again.)
This French teacher is kicking my ass!
I was so excited about those first few classes, and I was very excited about Finally be able to speak French. And then they hit me in the face with reality. I remember it very clearly, that feeling of being overwhelmed and all the negative thoughts flooding my head. “There is no way I can learn all of this.” “You will never get this.” Etcetera etcetera. I continued because I don’t like to quit smoking, but I was trying to get over these thoughts and feelings. I had to do this! Push Push Push!
Then the thought came to me: “I want do this, “and I felt the calm that came with that. Done. I don’t question things when they are so clear. So I started approaching learning French this way, and it has helped me tremendously. Frustrated and impatient? I bet yes! But I don’t let it become me. Because “I want to” now I can relax, have fun and, consequently, learn more efficiently.
What is going through your head?
Do you “have to” go exercise? Or “do you want”? If you “have to,” you are fighting against yourself and will make achieving your goals exponentially more difficult. If you “want”, you are enjoying the process and it will allow you to get where you want faster. So add a little “want“in your life.