Confidence is a major problem for many people. Unfortunately, a lack of confidence can be a vicious cycle when it comes to somebody's personal health and fitness. Allow me to explain.
From a very young age, humans begin to care about what other people think about them. Whether it is trying to impress a friend of the same or opposite sex in school, our childhood years are spent (for the most part) trying to 'fit in'.
Some folks reach a point in their lives when they understand that trying to impress everyone else just ends in sadness and despair for yourself because it is impossible to make everyone happy. Most figure this equation out at some point in their lives, but depending on when this happens, it can lead to these vicious cycles.
Back to health and fitness. Confidence is oftentimes derived from how we perceive ourselves in the world around us; how comfortable we feel emotionally, physically, etc. Many of us are wishing to make a change to try and not only make ourselves 'look better' but to feel better about ourselves as well.
The problem with confidence arises when we believe in the hype and chaos that surrounds us. Let me give you an example. There has never been a time in human history when we have been so inundated with advertisements for how people should look. Product advertisements display unrealistic images of individuals who are more than likely feel inadequate. These advertisements lead to a desire to change something about yourself.
Great, I am all for that, actually! If you are out of shape, do not exercise, and have a poor diet, change can definitely be a good thing. Unfortunately, many folks only see 1 solution to their current problem. They wish to look just like the guy/girl in the advertisement.
Not only that, not only are many individuals striving for a perfect image, but they get this idea stuck in their head that they must do this as fast as possible. Maybe this is a byproduct of our society in general, always wanting things now. No more waiting or hard work for something right? I just want it now.
Because of this, folks turn to magic potions and gizmos to feed this hunger of instant perfection. You have all seen the commercials. You know, the ones where "Just 10 minutes with this ab chair and you can look like this!" Wrong.
Of course none of you have tried those silly things, right? Of course not!
There are a majority of people who turn to "quick fixes" because they do not have the confidence or personal willpower to make a change for themselves. Whether its laziness or just a disbelief that they can live a healthy lifestyle, the vicious cycle begins and continues from there. People believe that they need that extra 'thing' whatever it may be to be their own success tool.
There is a reason why the health and fitness industry thrives on failure. If people did things on their own, made changes to their lifestyle, cleaned up their diet, and made a life-long commitment to change for the better, then there would be a lot of companies out of business.
There is no other industry (that I can think of) that thrives on people's failures. You try one magic gadget, you fail, give up and quit for a while. You then hop back on the horse, and try something else. Rinse and repeat.
I had a similar conversation with my wife the other day. I always think back to the character "Fat Bastard" from the movie Austin Powers. Remember when he says, "I eat because I'm unhappy, and I'm unhappy because I eat!" Everyone gets a chuckle...
But is this really that far from the truth for most people?
Folks are unhappy because they are overweight/inactive/lazy/etc., yet when they wish to make a change in their lifestyle, they try and fix things as quickly as possible with some fad diet or "new fitness craze", which puts them right back to where they started.
Step 3 to become happier and healthier is believe in yourself. Life is a long journey. You have time to grow and make mistakes, but believe in yourself that you can make more positive changes than negative mistakes. Those mistakes that you do make, assess the who/what/where/why/how and learn from it. Move on, and don't beat yourself up.
This step is all about believing that you can make your own decisions and changes for the better. Do not rely on a "breakthrough" pill that helps you lose weight. Spend your time talking with educated folks. Research online and get educated. Use the resources you have at your disposal and start making small changes for the better. Believe that you can.
I will detail in future blogs the steps you should now take to find the foods and activities that you enjoy and do them often. Move often, eat well, believe that you can do that!
Quote of the day:
"Nothing is easy to the unwilling."
~ Thomas Fuller