Every time I meet with a new client whether it’s for fitness training or nutrition counseling or a fitness goal guidance … etc, I feel like I am supposed to have all the answers and yet I am pretty sure I don’t. One question though rises every single time, a question that no trainer, counselor, psychologist … seems to have the RIGHT answer to: how to motivate oneself to do the “right thing”? whatever that might be, how can you help someone else to get motivated enough to do what they feel is the right thing.
I am sure everyone has their own reasons for staying fit and healthy, some reasons are serious and others are pretty vain. But we all know friends and family members who we think should take better care of their health and don’t. We don’t like to lecture them yet we like to see them live a healthier life.
If there is one common thing among all those who workout consistently and take care of their health, it’s definitely Self love. These people usually workout to feel stronger and feel AWESOME at the end of the workout. They see a workout as a “feel good” activity (like eating chocolate or a doughnut would be for some). They workout because it’s a triumph over laziness and feel good about getting off the couch or sleeping in. They don’t work out as a form of punishment because they ate too much or because they feel fat, ugly or lazy … Working out for them is more of a special treatment, a reward, a fun time … like going to the spa :) They don’t work out because they hate their bodies, they workout because they love their bodies and value their health and well being.
Most of those friends and family members you know are uncomfortable getting started because of self hate and constant self criticism. Working out feels like a punishment and dieting feels like deprivation. Switching this attitude is the key!
I recently read this quote by Louise Hay: “You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn't worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens”
Remind yourself and others that instead of feeling like a failure for not working out every day this week like you planned, celebrate the fact that you worked out twice this week! Instead of beating yourself up for eating that cookie, be proud that you did not eat the entire box of cookies :)
We are not perfect and we will never be and that's great. There is freedom in imperfection. We are vulnerable beings with temptations, desires and weaknesses but we also have one thing in common: we love to be loved and praised! Someone very wise recently told me “I like to ask myself what do I hope that person tells me? Then I tell it to myself”. A great attitude to have and a good reminder of how we should deal with those friends who need a little motivation. Ask yourself “what do you wish they tell themselves?” then tell them and see what happens :)
You can listen to my rambling about this here ...