My ultimate goal at the beginning of 2016 came true. I have a couple of tears right now because it was arguably the scariest thing I've attempted to do in my 36 years on Earth. What it took me to get there was a focus on consistent behaviors and remembering what I wanted my life to be like, not the exact goal to get my life where it needed to be. 7 to 11 hours a day of creativity, passion, program design and execution is needed to maintain my business. It's far from glamorous and I knew this going in, yet I wouldn't change my results thus far for where I was 3 years ago.
I am not bragging what so ever, yet I am Leo by nature. If you know what type of creature that is, you know it's hard for me to keep my mouth shut for far too long and I will boast just a little bit in the process. For 16 years, fitness has been my life. It's my way of socializing, my way of expressing who I am. I was once a 220 pound, shy individual who had zero direction in life. No resemblance of a routine, faith or direction . I'm the handsome gentleman on the left of this photo with another handsome gentleman of 29 years years on our soil to my right, my brother Tony. I have held him near and dear to my heart longer than anyone, my parents included.
He was heavy, in heart, mind and body(His graduation photo is above and he is the graduate in that photo). Lazy, unmotivated, content, I could be reaching to you as I type these words. I feel this way as well in the early stages of the year. It took a goal, failed relationship and a health scare to flip the script in his life. He changed his behaviors, he set a goal of weight loss. He did this by working out 6 days a week, eating 100 plus grams of protein, tons of vegetables throughout the day and slowly but surely, he carved out his body to look the way he does today. Bam, 60 pounds deleted due to consistent, healthy behaviors!
Write down one outcome you want. Don’t overthink it. Just name the desire you want most right now. Write down some of the skills you think you’ll need to get that outcome. If you’re just starting out, focus on foundational skills. What are the basics that make everything else possible? (For instance, if you want to manage your time, you need to learn to use a calendar.) Related to each skill, write down a behavior or two you can do today that’ll help build those skills. This can be really easy, like walking through the gym doors or even packing your gym bag for tomorrow morning.
Do the behavior today, and tomorrow, and so on. Keep in mind, if you don’t follow through on a given day, don’t let it derail you. Each day is a clean slate.
Avoid goals like these are nice and straightforward. What’s simpler or easier to understand than “don’t”? This seems logical. “Don’t” or “stop” will push you away from something bad, or something that threatens what you want to achieve.
Yet avoid goals are psychologically counterproductive.
Telling yourself to stop doing something almost guarantees you’ll keep doing it. As you might imagine, nobody likes being told what to do. This is called resistance, and it’s completely normal. The moment someone (even yourself) argues strongly for change, your natural reaction is to argue equally strongly against change.
What’s more, if the goal is to stop doing something, even the smallest slip can feel like a failure. One miss means you’re “off the wagon” and all hell breaks loose.
Avoid goals that are psychologically taxing They take up a lot of mental and emotional real estate and energy. All you can think about is what you’re not doing… or shouldn’t do… but really want to do… but you’re not allowed to do it!
That’s why I help clients turn “avoid” goals into “approach” goals.
“Approach” goals pull you toward something desirable (and quietly pull you away from something you’re trying to avoid).
“Approach” goals also focus on feeling good. About doing good for ourselves.
Here are some examples of how we can turn “avoid” goals into “approach” goals. Note how approach goals are about adding and enjoying “good stuff” rather than taking away or avoiding “bad stuff”. Here are a few examples:
Stop snacking on “junk food”. Snack on cut-up fruits and veggies prepared in advance. Fruits and veggies are good for me, and this helps me get more of them.
Stop over-eating when stressed or overwhelmed. Stay “checked in” and practice eating slowly and breathing between bites.
Result= I feel so much calmer, I enjoy mealtimes more and my digestion is better.
Stop drinking soda. Drink a glass of water with at least 3 meals each day.
Result= I don’t get headaches or constipated any more.
Stop eating when I’m stressed out. Come up with a list of stress-relieving activities that I enjoy. Then pick one from the list and do it.
Result=I feel so much better after my “stress-relief break”!
Stop feeling so fatigued and sleep deprived all the time. Develop a relaxing sleep ritual and 9 pm bedtime.
Result=I am clear-headed, energized, and happy. I need less caffeine now.
Is change easy? No Is it necessary? In order to grow I believe that to be a yes. You have to change your behaviors. My brother and I set out goals to be lighter, healthier versions of ourselves. We started exercising, drinking a lot of water, quit drinking soda, eating A LOT less junk food. My goal mid way through my transformation was to see my abs for the 1st time in my life. I studied and researched countless articles on how the professional bodybuilders did it. Truth is I was undeniably obsessed to achieve it, I saw it as a new identity. I didn't want to be the pothead who mooched of his family and friends forever. I wanted to be a charming young man with intelligence, humility, strength inside and out with a wicked smile and a six pack. I skipped parties, I stopped drinking, I slept 8 hours each night, I did shelter myself a bit. If you want to be that good at something or look a certain way, You have to give undeniable attention to that detail and block outside distractions. So I achieved it due to my behavior changes. You can't meet halfway and expect half ass results. 1 gram of protein per pound of bodyweight at a minimum, lots of vegetables, 1 ounce of water per pound of bodyweight, 90 minutes in the gym: 5 days a week. A cheat day is allowed 1 day a week OR cheat meals in the evening 1-2 days a week. It's vanilla and cookie cutter, but it's the blueprint to the engine in my blood and structure.
I won't forfeit this part of my life for anyone, I'll compromise it but will never turn my back on it. Fact is, my life will continuously change again and again to become the best possible business owner and walking billboard of it as i can. I'm fully prepared to attack it with a team of others.
I just gave you a blueprint as to what to do and how to achieve an amazing physique. Are you willing to set aside that party? That drink that's calling your name? Outside distractions that beckon daily? You better have a one track mind if you want to be GREAT at anything. Sure there is a balance in life, but that Paradigm shift is going to have to take place in order to be extraordinary.
Follow me @jcvwellness on Twitter and Instagram or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for fitness advice, life questions or a simple shout out/criticism you have. What would you like to see featured on an upcoming blog or post?