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Scott McDermott column: Shortcuts don’t work

The problem is: Sometimes they seem to work, but even when they do work, they don’t

Shortcuts don’t work.

The problem is: Sometimes they seem to work, but even when they do work, they don’t.

Let me explain:

It’s really easy to find news of people who win the BIG lottery; 15 million dollars, 39 million, hundreds of millions, or even just a few million. They made it! Shortcut to the most amazing life right? But then what does the article talk about? They inevitably lose it all. How can that be? When they win the lottery they buy a big house, fancy vehicles, go on huge vacations, give money away, unknowingly have money taken away and all sorts of things, until they are broke again. You can read about one lady from New Jersey who won the big lottery jackpot not once, but twice, and currently lives in a trailer park, and is flat broke! How is that possible?

Another example with similar parallels is the world of famous children. Child stars who get everything fast when they are young, then completely lose it and end up in a lot of trouble. Justin Bieber, Brittany Spears, Miley Cyrus, Lindsay Lohan, Macaulay Culkin, Haley Joel Osment, and on it goes. Why did these kids go completely off track into drugs, addictions, self-destruction and lose everything?

In my world of fitness and health, I see the same thing with people who come to me that have gone from fat to fit and then go back to fat again, some people several times. Nearly all of these folks are the ones who lost the fat very quickly using extreme weight loss techniques or diets. Many choose diets or plans that involve extremely low calories such as 500 or so calories a day. Sometimes this is coupled with surgery to make their stomach smaller. Many of these plans require injections of vitamins, or other such pills or products to help them basically starve while still carrying on. As a result, they lose a lot of weight in a very short time.

The strange part comes in when they go from 350lbs down to 180, but then gain it all back again. Stretching a surgically altered stomach back to larger again or simply going back to all of the bad habits in spite of how great it felt to be leaner.

To put it bluntly, “we cannot skip the lessons and just get the results”.

Therein lies the problem. All of these people have one thing in common: They got all of the results, without any of the lessons. You cannot just take someone who has never known what it’s like to be smaller, or wealthy and give them instant results and expect them to be fine. They are not trained or ready for that, they have no systems in place, no good habits, or a compass to guide them, especially children. They do not have any lessons to draw from, systems in place, experience to work with or friends to consult in this new world. They are in short, very vulnerable. All of the lessons in life they have gained so far are geared towards lower to moderate income, and in the sudden face of millions, they make poor decisions and end up back where they started again.

Teenagers and children are not ready to have everything in the world thrown at them in limitless quantities because they have no way to deal with it all and then get hopelessly lost. It is not fair to give a teenager fortune, fame, and total freedom because they are not mature or experienced enough to make good choices yet.

With fitness and health, when someone does a crash diet or has stomach surgery and loses a whole bunch of weight, the trouble comes when they leave the hospital and go back to their version of ‘normal’. They will go back to their same environment, same friends, same family and same habits of eating what they ate before the change. With stomach reduction surgery, there will be a period of time where lots of food physically will not fit, but as I said, their stomach will simply adapt and stretch.

Let’s recall a different example: Henry Ford, H.J. Heinz, Walt Disney, George Foreman have all lost nearly everything several times, and time and time again, earned it all back. How is it that in these examples they succeeded at regaining wealth, while the regular people went the other way? Simple. They earned the money the hard way the first time and the lessons they learned to do that are en-grained and simply repeated. It is their habit and mindset that creates their reality and the loss of everything is simply temporary.

If you take a person who has been fit most of their life and create a temporary situation where they have gained some weight, they will find it easier to drop the pounds off again because they just go back to the habits that had them be fit like they once were. I am speaking from personal experience in much of this article. When I went from a 194lb world champion athlete to 237 pounds, 2 years after my near-death crash, and after my many, many surgeries were all done, I knew exactly what I had to do to get fit again. All I had to do was get back to those ‘fit person’ habits.

By learning the habits of the type of person you wish to become, wealthy, healthy or famous, and repeatedly doing those things, the results will come along as a by-product of the action-based habits. If you do suddenly find yourself rich, or famous, or lean, then you need a coach or trusted advisor who knows this new world, to help you learn how to stay there.

Happy Training!

Sarah Baker

About the Author: Sarah Baker

I joined Black Press in March 2023 and am looking forward to sharing stories about the local communities.
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