Tuesday, May 27, 2008

A Key Step to Health and Fitness

If you are really committed to achieving a high level of health and fitness, you must also be willing to eliminate, any negative and destructive habit patterns that may be contributing to your poor health and fitness.

Most of us are well aware of some of the obvious one like smoking, taking illegal drugs, over eating or eating junk, and excessive consumption of alcoholic beverages, but there are many more which we’ll discuss below.

So now what are some of the unhealthy negative habits you should look at and consider changing, as you start a program to achieve your health and fitness goals? Most of them you already know, but here’s a list of things to think about:
1. Smoking, drinking, drugs, and eating junk food, as mentioned above.
2. Excessive use of salt or sugar.
3. Eating too much candy, sweets, and unhealthy deserts.
4. Not exercising.
5. Not eating enough fresh fruits and vegetables.
6. Not taking vitamins and supplements.
7. Skipping breakfast.
8. Eating late at night.
9. Not drinking enough pure water.
10. Failing to deal with excessive stress or anxiety.
Now the big question is: Exactly how do I change my negative habit patterns? You may have tried to stop smoking or eating fattening deserts in the past, but found that you just couldn’t do it! Don’t let that discourage you, I also couldn’t change my negative habit patterns for many years’, but rest assured you can do it, if you really want to. Following are some suggestions:

First Get Really Clear on Your Goals You must have a clear picture of exactly what you want.

If you don't have a clear vision and goal you'll never get there! If it's losing 20 pounds, then picture how you'll look after you’ve lost the weight, picture the clothes you'll wear, and how much better you'll look and feel.

Maybe you want to improve your muscle tone, body shape, or just feel better?

Again...envision it clearly in your mind, as if you're already there. You may have heard this before, but I know it works. I've done it time and time again.

The more clearly you can see your goal as actually having been achieved in your mind, the faster you will achieve that goal.

You’ve undoubtedly heard how top athletes, Olympians, or even the golfer, Tiger Woods, visualize their ‘perfect’ performance in their minds over and over before they actually do it. They see and feel exactly what the heir perfect performance will look like. And then they do it, just as they pictured in their minds.

Get a clear mental picture of yourself after you have achieved your goals….see it, feel it! Imagine how your spouse and/or significant others in your life will react after you have achieved your goals.

Then think about all the other positive aspects of your successfully accomplishing your health and fitness goals. Picture exactly how it would affect your life, your relationships, and your happiness?

Take Full Responsibility remember that we are all 100% responsible for how our lives turn out!

Regardless of your current circumstances or what’s happened to you in the past, no one else has control over your life and the choices you make.
The bottom line is that you are largely the result of the choices you make on a daily, and even hourly basis.

Our minds are going every minute of every day, and the self-talk going on in our heads is too often negative and non-productive. Remember the fact is that we get what we think about, so try to keep your thoughts positive, and productive at all times.

Try to become more aware of your ongoing thoughts and ultimately the choices that result from those thoughts. When you can “in the moment” become aware of exactly what you’re thinking about, and the choices that result from those thoughts, you will be amazed at how you can alter your thinking, make deliberate positive choices, and start achieving the outcomes you want…instead of just acting on old established negative habit patterns.

Use the Pain and Pleasure Principle

Did you ever consider the fact that everything, we do in life is driven by the pain and pleasure principle? If we feel that a particular action will result in more pleasure than pain in our lives, we will do it…but if we feel that action will bring more pain than pleasure we will not do it. It’s as simple as that!

Tony Robbins talks a lot about the “pain and pleasure” principle in his self-help training programs, and the bottom line is that it works. The key to success here is what we focus on in making our pain or pleasure decisions.

For example, imagine you’re out to dinner with some good friends and one of your friends suggests you order a delicious fattening dessert. If you focus on how delicious the dessert will be and how much you’ll enjoy eating it, you will order the dessert…..but if you start to think about how you want to lose weight, how good you’ll feel when you attain your weight and fitness goals, you will decide not to eat it.

What Tony Robbins say's is that we make choices based on pain and pleasure, and until the pain gets big enough, we will not be motivated to make the necessary changes to achieve the goals in our lives.

The great thing is you can put yourself in that state of mind whenever you want. You can do this with EVERY situation in your life.

So when you find yourself taking the easy road, stop, catch yourself and do a "gut check". Create the pain right then and there! Get that pain high enough to take immediate action. This works great for your health and fitness commitments. Every time you want skip your workout, or eat unhealthy food, get the pain to come out and really feel it. It works every time!

This is where the taking 100% responsibility for your life comes in.
Can you now see how you in fact are in control of your outcomes for good or bad? And…it’s not as hard as you think. In fact, once you do it and see you can improve, it gets infectious and you’ll soon become a positive “change-maker” in all areas of your life.