Tag Archives: One Word

Work for What You Want

(Picture Source: homemade life)

I recently signed up for a six-week community activity program. People can choose to join a team or register as an individual. The goal is to get Canadians to be more physically active. Participants can choose whatever activities they like so long as they commit to the minimum number of recommended hours of physical activity per week.

I sent an e-invite to an acquaintance from church. She declined. I’m not upset that she declined but the reasons this person gave for not wanting to participate were, in my opinion, excuse making. We all make excuses about something in our life: exercise, healthy eating, hours and quality of sleep, over or lack of commitment, etc. But where I draw the line with excuse making is when people want something they are not willing to work for.

If you want to be fit, you need to exercise. If you want to be a doctor, you need to attend medical school. If you want to be a hero, you need to do something extraordinary. If you want to be a winner you must compete in a competition. Some things are non-negotiable.

If you are not careful, excuses can become a source of pride and stubbornness. You eventually stubbornly refuse to do what is required and you pridefully convince yourself that you, unlike the others, don’t have to do what is necessary.

(Source: Biblical Counselling C.)

Some simple, yet still challenging ways to stop making excuses and accomplish and achieve what you need:

State verbally and in writing what you want.

e.g. I want to become an accountant.

State verbally and in writing what you need to do. What is it that must be done? These are non-negotiables.

I must attend school and training sessions because it is the only option for becoming a certified accountant. I have to pay for these classes, pass all of the mandatory courses and exams. I will them need to apply for jobs.

State verbally and in writing what will likely happen when you do all that is required, mandatory, and non-negotiable.

I will have the mandatory requirements for becoming a certified accountant and can apply for jobs as an accountant.

I get people to do this exercise so they understand that mandatory and necessary processes are not our enemies. They are not something to be dreaded or hated. There are people who have a tendency to misapply the words have to, need to, and mandatory to things that are not; and as a result they begin to see these words as something automatically bad.

None of us like being “told what to do”, but every single day you do something because you have been told to do so, are required to do so, or have been forced to do so.  What might some of these things be: stopping at a red light, feeding your children, paying your employees, not punching someone in the face even though you really feel like doing so.

Have to, need to, must, and mandatory can be words of freedom and bring accomplishment to our lives when we learn to adhere to them in proper circumstances. Don’t allow your dreams or goals to remain unaccomplished in your life because you couldn’t bring yourself to do what was non-negotiable.

Proverbs 18:12 “Before destruction one’s heart is haughty, but humility goes before honor.”

Proverbs 11:2 “When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.

QUESTIONS and REFLECTIONS:

How do you feel about the words “have to”, “need to”, “must”, and “mandatory”? Are there any emotions that you attach to these words?

What is your usual response and thoughts when you are told to do something you don’t want to do?

Take some time to meditate on a verse of your choice regarding stubbornness or pride. Ask God to reveal to you any area where instances of pride and stubbornness might be preventing you from doing things in your life that are necessary.

When doing so, remember to be gentle with yourself and remember that God reveals the wrongs in our lives to correct them and change them. He does so from his love, mercy, compassion, and kindness towards us.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fit Guy Fat: Lessons Learned With Grace and Understanding

 

My Personal Trainer Is Killing Me

We’ve heard the complaints: Personal Trainers are evil! They are mean, bossy, and pushy! They’ve never been overweight so how could they know how we feel and what we go through?

There might be personal trainers who fit these descriptions, but from what I’ve noticed; a number of people who have a dislike for personal trainers and their profession, have all failed at successfully losing weight or achieving any significant fitness goal.

We need to be honest; personal trainers are there to challenge their clients mentally and physically. They are not there to babysit us or do the work for us. I’ve had personal trainers in the past, some were great, some were a waste of my time. What I liked about having a personal trainer was the accountability that came along with having someone design a program for me with the expectation that I would follow it during the week until our next one-on-one session.

If I had to guess why some personal trainers develop a lack of sympathy or compassion for overweight and out of shape clients it is because they’ve heard every excuse possible from people who don’t want to do the difficult work of changing their habits and routines. I hate exercising and any time I’ve paid for personal training services I’ve informed the gym staff to pair me with someone who has a lot of patience for an overweight out of shape crybaby like me.

I do as I’m told to, but I don’t do so quietly. I’m that woman at the gym who sometimes mumbles swear words under her breath and looks as if I am ready to roll over and die while engaging in exercise I’ve deemed “too hard” for me. Yup, I tremble, sweat, and swear. I’m never quite sure which is worse, the grunting weight lifter, or me the whimpering, mumbling, shaking lady who creates a backlog of annoyed lifters as they wait for me to finish.

Personal Trainer Personal Lies

There is a new show in on A&E as of January 2016 called Fit To Fat To Fit. The purpose of the show is to help personal trainers experience what it’s like to be overweight and have to lose weight. It is meant to help trainers develop more understanding and compassion for what their clients have to go through. According to A&E, this show is “A ground breaking new series that follows personal fitness trainers from across the country as they undertake the most extreme weight-loss experiment ever: by forcing themselves to gain weight, they aim to better understand the struggles of their obese clients as they lose the weight together.”

Listen and learn. Don’t let your stubbornness, ego, and pride ever prevent you from achieving a necessary and important goal in life.

Personal Trainers Are Fun

A trainer shouldn’t need to have been formerly overweight in order to help clients. People who have never had a trainer don’t want to accept the fact that we, the clients, still have to do the work. It’s uncomfortable having someone tell you what to do and how to do it, but personal trainers are teachers and we are the students.

As I continue to focus on my One Word for 2016, grace, I am reminded to have grace towards people who don’t understand the struggle of weight loss. I can’t expect people to know what it’s like to have to develop a new way of thinking, eating, and moving if they have never been obese. With grace I am able to decrease my feelings of anger and frustration that occur every time someone makes an oversimplified suggestion or assumption about ways to loose weight.

Grace allows me to not focus on personal trainers who haven’t yet arrived at a place of compassion or for those who have become tired of hearing repeated excuses from clients. Grace means not being hard on myself when I have skipped a session or didn’t stick to the workout schedule for the week. Grace means not being discouraged when the scale or a measuring instrument doesn’t reflect the numbers I want to see.

Whether you are trying to lose weight or gain muscle or run further and quicker, grace needs to be included in your transformation. Kindness and compassion towards yourself and your body will keep you going unlike self-punishment which never leads you to a place of healthiness.

A New Year of Little Things

 

Little-Things-Count-

Happy New Year! We are now a week into 2016, and finally back into a normal routine after the welcomed, yet sometimes frazzled holiday season.

I’m not the type of person who gets excited about January 1. I see it as nothing more than the day after New Year’s Eve. There are still those who make New Year’s resolutions; for some these will be achieved, for most people they will fail to meet them. I still know people who make resolutions, but I tend not to give them too much credit because their list of desired changes and goals seem so out of character for them. I often wonder to myself, ‘Why are you wanting to make these changes now, why weren’t they goals and resolutions a week or two ago?

For the third New Year in a row, I’ve chosen to bypass resolutions and instead choose a word that will be my personal theme for the year. Feel free to visit this link to the One Word page on my blog to read more about my chosen word: Grace.

When it comes to making important and sometimes necessary changes in our lives, let’s not wait for specific dates on our calendars dictated by cultural holidays and social expectations. You may not have made a list of resolutions on January 1, and that is alright. Maybe you will wake up one day in a few months and realize that there are certain changes you’d like to make. Change doesn’t have to be something negative. Maybe you’d like to take up a sport, or recreational activity. Maybe you want to finally learn how to drive or finally finish renovating an area in your house. The options and possibilities are endless when we consider making changes that bring us joy and happiness. 

I began 2016 without the excruciating physical pain that had returned periodically throughout 2015. Two months of physiotherapy was a great help in decreasing my pain; now I am in the maintenance stage. What I learned from this round of physiotherapy sessions was the importance of being consistent with the so-called “little things”. It was the simple, yet important exercises that helped to ease the pain and strengthen my muscles. The movements seemed so minor at first I felt stupid doing them, it almost felt like a waste of time; but within a few short sessions I noticed a difference. I made sure I completed these “little things” each day and eventually my body felt different. 10- 15 minutes a day of doing these various exercises helped to strengthen my muscles, decrease pain, and return feeling to my right side.

If you want to see changes in your life and in yourself during 2016, there is only one way to do so: commit to the little things. It’s those things that we take for granted, or don’t think are important that often make a difference. Small things are part of the big picture.

QUESTION and ACTIONS:

What are some “little things” in your life that you could start doing, or stop doing that would help you make changes in your life?

Can you think of past experiences where small changes made a difference for you?

little-things

 

How Intentional is Your Health?

Intentional Health

 

One Word 365 is an alternative to the long list of New Year’s resolutions that North American’s often make on January 1 of each year, and forget or fail at by January 2nd. With One Word you choose to instead focus on one word for the entire year. This provides the core of what you’d like to be the main emphasis and motivation.

One Word_Intentional

For 2015 I chose the word ‘plan’ and then after about a month I realized a better word for my goals and desire would be ‘intentional’.

To be intentional is to have in mind and/or make plans with the purpose of attaining specific end goals. I came to the awareness that my life needed to be intentional. I wanted to know what my real intentions were for engaging in various activities in my life: work, volunteer, religious practices, making purchases, everything. In the beginning it was difficult to stop and ask myself, “Why am I doing this? By doing this, what am I expecting?” Over time these simple, yet deep questions help me to add and remove many things from my life.

In the area of food and fitness I realized my impatience and desire to achieve quick results were the reasons why I wasn’t progressing towards my goals. I was looking into eating plans that would get me the fastest results instead of the healthiest results. I devised physical schedules that I knew would take off the most inches of fat in the shortest amount of weeks. However, by being intentional I was able to stop and honestly evaluate the motivations for my choices.

Throughout this year I’ve been able to prevent myself from making my injuries worse. What made this year different from the past was being able to discipline myself enough to pause and self-evaluate. When you are making healthy changes in your life an important question to ask yourself is, “Why have I made this choice?”, followed by, “What do I think I’ll personally gain from this choice?”, and finally, “Is there a healthier way to achieve the desired result?” You’d be amazed at how these three simple questions coupled with prayer and quiet meditation can reveal so much.

Whether it is a food plan or physical fitness goal, stop and ask yourself serious questions about your true motivation. If your reasons are not good for you, don’t beat yourself up, simply take time to pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help move you towards a way to achieve your goals without causing physical and emotional hurts to yourself. The answers may not come quickly, but if you want to become or remain healthy, you will accept the fact that anything that is good for you takes time.

I_Am_Intentional

QUESTION:

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Why have I made this choice?
  • What do I think I’ll personally gain from this choice?
  • Is there a healthier way to achieve the desired end choice?

ACTION: Take time to look at some of the activities in your life that you find emotionally or physically taxing. Stop and ask yourself the three questions above or similar self-motivational questions.

 

Additional Resources:

101 Thought Provoking Questions to Ask Before it’s too Late

How Self Motivated are You?