New Year, New You? 5 Questions You Need to Ask Yourself
So we are at this joyous time of year. Everyone is determined, depressed, and fat from the holidays.
People are budgeting in some new workout clothes and gym memberships. They want to not only lose all the unwanted holiday weight, but also make this year “the year” they get back into shape.
Time to look like we did 20 years ago.
I have never understood the mindset behind the resolution desire to “get back in shape.” I really never got the drive to look like you did decades ago either. Why the pressure? Why does a new year have to signify a “new you”?
Oh wait, I know. Because everyone else is doing it.
I believe that is what physical change has turned into. A conformity movement pressuring us to make physical changes.
What is the easiest thing to change? What shows people we have changed? Our bodies.
We have placed a stigma on fitness. It is believed that getting in shape is hard. I will say to you that yes, it is. But I ask you, compared to what?
There are so many other facets to getting into physical shape that are not considered or advertised. One that pops out to me first is, YOU! When a person wants to make a change, a commitment in anything, it begins and ends with them. Not their bodies, but their minds.
The things that influence their minds? Family, friends, work, just life in general.
It is like going into battle year after year and getting shot, because all you do is bring a knife to a gun fight. At the end of each new year you sit and wonder what went wrong. As the start of a new calendar year you proclaim “this is the year.”
While you go and grab that knife again.
Maybe that knife gets bigger and bigger each year, but guess what, it’s still only a knife.
Self-Reflection and 5 Important Questions
A person has to do some self-reflection. A person needs to ask some very important questions before they try to get into shape. Those questions to me are:
- Why am I getting in shape?
- What is my plan to get into shape?
- Who else will this effect? (if you stop and think it always effect someone else)
- Am I prepared to fail (you will) and will I stay at it?
- Can I accept that I will not look the way I want, but better than I am?
That last question is a big one.
As a gym-goer for over 15 years, and having appeared in magazines with a physical build that others aspired to have, I will tell you I never reached the look I wanted. No one ever does. I think that is why they always go back.
It is kind of crazy if you think about it. One can have a healthy mind during this “mad journey of physical self-perfection.” It begins with accepting that there is no perfect. There is just you and the body you have been blessed with.
I am a big believer of the mindset Kai Greene has patented. “Thoughts become things.” But I believe this mindset helps to visualize your body as a blank canvas where you paint the image in your brain as you develop.
No expectations, no pressure. Just you, the sweat, the weights, and the gym.
The perception you have of yourself in the physical world (what you see in the mirror) in return puts an image in your brain of what to create. For example, instead of envisioning yourself as a Porsche, you look in the mirror and see a Chevy.
Now, this is to not say that you are not as good as a Porsche, or that a Porsche represents a certain level of supremacy, it just represents the “perfection” the world tries to broadcast to us.
Seeing yourself as a Chevy, you might then think: “What can I do to make this look better?” You visualize the parts you want to alter, not change. You see, we cannot change our parts. If we could, we would simply return the vehicle for a new one.
That is where people are let down.
You must “work with what you got.” To me, the best builds are achieved when a person stops worrying about what others think as being “perfect,” and just go to work on what you got. I did that. It worked out well.
So once you get through this hard part and focus on those other questions, you will then know where you should start in this fitness endeavor. It is never a wrong time to do the right thing.
Taking care of our body is key. Instead of giving something all you got with blind, reckless abandonment and 110% (all the cool things people say when telling you to “go for it”), maybe your life only permits you to give 75% – based on the questions I asked earlier.
You do not want to suffer at something else while succeeding at another thing. At the end of the day our health is all that matters, not a look. And always remember, doing something always wins out over doing nothing.
Happy New Year!