A silly little blog for me to drop the excrement of my mind.
-or- making the change stick
Published on February 7, 2006 By BlueDev In Health & Medicine
So in the month or so that I have earnestly been striving to improve my health I have stumbled upon a discovery. I have finally realized how to make it stick.

I can't tell you the number of times I have started working out, and gone good for a week or two. Maybe even three. But then it starts to fall apart. And the reason is simple. I was forcing myself to make a change.

And when you are forcing yourself to make a change on a daily basis, you just get tired of it. It becomes more than a chore. It becomes a burden.

But when it becomes a way of life, suddenly the burden is lighter. See, when I head in to the hospital, I park on the top level of the parking garage. Not because I have to (there are often even spaces on the ground level), but because that is just what I do. I then run down the 8 filghts of stairs to the ground level. Not becuase I am making myself take the stairs, just because I don't take the elevator. It is simply something I don't do.

I haven't taken an elevator in over a month, and I average 70 flights of stairs a day. But it no longer feels like a chore. It isn't a decision I make every time. I don't even look at the elevator, or even notice them anymore. I know where all the stair wells are and which ones will get me where I need to go fastest. But not because I am forcing myself. I have simply convinced myself it is my way of life to take the stairs.

When I go to the store I park at the back of the lot. It is just what I do.

I don't eat anything after 8:00 pm. Not because I have to force myself not to. I just don't. That is my way of life now.

There are lots of other changes I have made in the past month. But the most important ones are the changes in the way I think. I don't view going to exercise as something I make myself do, any more than taking a pee is something I make myself do. It is just part of the daily routine.

And you know what? This sort of mindset has made all the difference in the world.


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Comments
on Feb 07, 2006
Very wise observation!
on Feb 07, 2006
I wholeheartedly agree with you, having made similar changes in my life of late. You can try to change your actions, and it will be a daily struggle, since you're constantly fighting your inclinations to do what you think is better. But if you are doing it not because it's the better alternative, but just because you know that it's right, and therefore the only way to do it, then the base is made. It becomes harder to fall into old behaviors than to continue the new ones, since the new ones are the obvious manifestations of your new mindset, while the old ones would run in opposition.

It's all about changing the mindset. That's what's been different this time around for me too.
on Feb 07, 2006
Good for you Dev! It's great this is working for you and you give me hope for myself! Thanks for the motivation!
on Feb 07, 2006
I agree too. I think life changes such as these are the sort of thing that has to almost become a reflex or subconcious action as opposed to, as you suggest, a forced change. I've been trying to change my mindset as well. It is a tough thing to do but I know I can achieve it.

It is so good to hear you're doing well. I'm pleased for you and, as I've said before, am motivated by your motivation.
on Feb 07, 2006
Very wise observation!


Thanks Doc!

It's all about changing the mindset. That's what's been different this time around for me too.


I am glad you have found the same. You are 100% correct. Fitness (just like so many things in life) really has to come from a change of mind, before you ever change your body. Once you start to master that way of thinking, everything else comes much more easy.

Thanks for the motivation!


No problem FS. Best of luck in your efforts.

It is a tough thing to do but I know I can achieve it.


It is tough. But I wish you the best.

Thanks for the comments.
on Feb 08, 2006

This is why "diets" fail.  When people think of something as "temporary", it won't ever really work.  You are right- you have to change the way you live to make it stick.  It's your new, healthier way of life, and it's not temporary.

I have had to change the way I eat for health reasons, and it was hard at first.  But, once I got in the mindset of "this is how I eat", then it became easy.

I'm glad that you can see your new lifestyle as permanent!

on Feb 08, 2006
I need to get re-motivated, seriously!

You are helping me out!
on Feb 08, 2006
This is why "diets" fail. When people think of something as "temporary", it won't ever really work.


Wise words Karma. Thanks for the insightful comment.

I need to get re-motivated, seriously!You are helping me out!


Happy to help! Best of luck with your efforts.
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