McDermott: One Simple Question

Scott McDermott’s weekly column about health and wellness

There is one question you need to ask yourself when it comes to living your best life, no matter what aspect you are facing – one question that covers all things in your life and is the key to moving ahead, staying stuck, or falling behind. It doesn’t matter what your situation is, your history, your goals, your circumstances or anything, this question applies and is the key.

The question is this: “Am I willing?,”and there is an equally powerful question: “Am I unwilling?”

Let me explain. Fill in any goal you have here: get fit and healthy, get a raise, have a great marriage, take a vacation, get a new car, move to a new house, earn a million dollars, it doesn’t matter. Everything is available to you, if you are willing.

Six weeks ago, I weighed 217 pounds, and I had all sorts of great excuses as to why: the near-death crash in November 2015, the stress of working seven days a week, 12 to 16 hours a day, the economy, five surgeries and so on.

All of them are a load of garbage. Excuses. Lame excuses.

Today I weigh 199 pounds. I dropped 18 pounds of fat in six week. How? Simple. I decided I was unwilling to be fat and out of shape any more. After 20 years as a trainer, I knew exactly what to do, I just wasn’t doing it. Sure, I was doing a few things, but not enough to make a change. I got to the point where I was unwilling to be in the shape I was in, any longer.

I picked a date and started along with a bunch of our clients at the gym – a support group of amazing people up to the same thing. We faced all sorts of challenges and there were habits that I had formed in the last 2 years that were not serving me. I finally got to the point where I was willing to do whatever it took to make this change and I gave up the bad habits that were holding me back.

When you are willing to do whatever it takes to get to your goal, your problems will collapse. They have to because you will be relentless in your pursuit of that goal until they do!

Being willing means, you will do the things required to get your goal. For fitness that means you have to be willing to go to the gym, get sweaty, tired, sore, and then have to clean up, and go eat healthy food. Are you willing to stop eating crap? To stop drinking 300+ calorie fancy holiday drinks and eating junk food because it is convenient. Are you willing to say “no thanks” to your friends who will want you to join them in a treat? Are you willing to make healthy food at home even though it takes time? Are you willing to go shopping and just get the good stuff, walking by the temptations? Are you willing to get enough sleep, drink enough water, do some stretches, get to classes on time, push your comfort levels, lift bigger weights, and say NO to all the offers of chips, juice, wine, popcorn, cake and ice cream?

I can hear some of you crying already that I am taking all the fun out of life! Nope. I’m simply asking a question. Are you willing?

Because here is the big thing: You don’t have to do this, and you don’t have to change. Perhaps you are unwilling to change, and that is totally fine! Perhaps you are willing to be where you are at, and all that comes with it, and that is totally cool! The only problem comes when you say you want to be healthy and then don’t do anything about it. Now you are at war with yourself and the only result is that you will be unhappy.

Your brain is hard wired to win at whatever self-image and set belief you have for yourself. If you believe that bad stuff always happens to you, it will. If you believe that you are always going to be overweight, then you will be. Your subconscious is way more powerful than your conscious mind, and is always working to create the image of yourself that you have. You need to reprogram yourself to your goals and create a new image.

Create a clear goal of who and what you want to be, write out every step, and ask yourself if you are willing to change enough to get there. If you want to lose weight, think about all of the things that will need to change: how you eat, how you exercise, how you move each day, how much water you will drink, the things you know are not helping you. Then think about what you will need to give up in that regard. Make a list of all of these things, and beside each one, ask yourself, “am I willing?” Think about the daily things that you will need to do, who you will need to work with to help you, the people you will need to surround yourself with. If you are unwilling to give up wings and beer with your friends every week, fancy sugar drinks, sweets, and watching three to four hours of TV a day, then that is a great discovery, and you can just move on and let the healthy body goal go.

Subconscious thoughts are deeply engrained, so this might take some time. If you want to change, you need to be willing, relentlessly willing to change and to stay focused and consistent.

If you can do that, I guarantee your life will change, and faster than you imagined.

Happy Training!


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