Why is it so difficult for so many of us to establish and maintain a healthy lifestyle? For so long, as soon as things in my life became challenging and uncomfortable, my diet and exercise routine were the first to go and I found myself sprinting to the comfort foods and behaviors that allowed me to “escape” the discomfort.
It wasn’t until I created my Lifebook that I truly began to understand why maintaining a healthy lifestyle is significantly beneficial to me in every major area of my life!
Welcome to the second of 13 posts regarding the transformational Lifebook program. In the last post, I provided an introduction to the program and laid the foundation for what you can expect in the following posts. I recommend going back and checking it out if you haven’t seen it already.
In this article, we will discuss the first of the 12 Lifebook categories — our Health and Fitness.
Now, before I go any further, I think it’s important to address the elephant in the room. Although I am certified coach and facilitator for this program, my #1 goal for these posts is to share some of the wisdom and life hacks that I have obtained to help others along their path of growth. If over the course of these next 12 blog posts I have helped one person along their personal journey, I will feel successful!
However, that’s not to say that if you feel as though this content just barely scratches the surface and want to continue to further explore this work, head on over to my website to learn more about Lifebook and other coaching I provide.
Alright, so here’s a quick overview of what we will be covering today:
1. We will first explore why maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important not only for our physical body but how it will also help to achieve our goals in all the different areas of our lives.
2. I will then challenge you to answer the 4 questions that are asked in the Lifebook program for this category (what you believe, what you want, why you want it and what are you going to do about it) and will share with you some of the greatest insights that I gained as I answered these questions for myself.
Let’s get started!
When it comes to your personal health and fitness, how would you rate it on a scale from 1–10 in terms of how satisfied you are with both what you put into your body and how you move your body? Now, more importantly, are you satisfied with this rating?
If you are anything like most of us, this rating probably leaves something to be desired. We all have a desire to be more physically fit — to eat better — to stretch regularly — but yet, here we are still not where we’d like to be. What’s the deal?
And, if I asked you why that is, I’m sure I’d get many different responses. Too busy, too lazy, exhausted, and burnt out. For whatever reason, other areas of our lives have been a priority and/or we choose to not put ourselves through the discomfort of going through a tough workout or eating foods that are not as “fun” as our comfort foods. Either way, we are consciously making the choice to not place our health and fitness as a higher priority in our lives.
Additionally, for many of us, our health and fitness can be a frustrating area in our lives. My heart goes out to anyone who struggles with their weight or has health conditions that make it more difficult to live a healthy lifestyle. I have seen the frustration that goes into trying and failing at different weight loss programs or exercise routines. It’s enough to make anyone want to give up. The excitement to try the newest fad quickly fades when we (again) don’t achieve our desired and the promised results.
This can create a cycle of high and low self-esteem, high and low self-confidence, and downright negativity when it comes to not achieving our desired health and fitness lifestyle.
But, after a little while when the next fad comes along, like a horse to a carrot, we jump right back in only to find disappointment waiting around the corner. Does this pattern sound familiar to you?
This is why I believe having a Lifebook has been such a game changer for me, in this area of my life in particular! For example, I have been told many times why I “should” want a healthy body. However, this is the first time I have been asked to think deeply about the type of health and fitness lifestyle I truly wanted for my own life, to really become intentional about why having a healthy lifestyle mattered to me (or to be honest with myself about whether it mattered to me at all). Additionally, I had to get real about what I needed to do in order to achieve my health and fitness vision and, most importantly, to decide whether I was truly willing to commit to the actions that are needed to get me from where I am today to where I desire to go.
But, for so many of us, answering these questions STILL may not be enough to set us up on a path of success. Do you want to know why by truly embracing the Lifebook system, it has worked for me this time? It’s because of the other 11 Lifebook categories and how closely aligned each of them are to one another — especially to our health and fitness. I have found this to be the magic of Lifebook!
Let me give you an example: let’s say you have some big dreams in your life when it comes to changing careers in order to make more money. You decide as we make it to the Financial and Career categories (the 9th and 10th categories of Lifebook) that you are ready to take a leap in your career that you will believe will provide you a better Quality of Life (category 11). Additionally, it will allow you more time with your spouse (category 6), your kids (category 7) and with friends (category 8). In order to reach these big goals, you’re going to need to tap into the character traits that you will need to build more consciously into your life (category 4) such as self-discipline and self-confidence. Additionally, taking such a leap is going to require you to push through some fears you know will rise as you step into this unchartered territory. The Emotional Life category will be really useful here (category 3). Finally, you are going to need the physical energy that will help make your goals a reality and the mental fuel that will provide you with the focus and vitality needed to achieve your goals — and this is where the first category of Lifebook, the Health and Fitness category, comes in!
The goals and dreams that we create in each the 12 life categories have the potential to align in such a way that they can help support the visions that you have in the other 11 categories. When everything aligns in this way, you will have a greater potential for success in all the areas of your life. I like to call this alignment of the vision for each of the areas of our life our North Star.
When we are truly honest with ourselves, we learn that slacking off on our health and physical fitness doesn’t just mean packing on that extra dreaded pound but also comes with other consequences that we may not have considered before (lack of the energy and focus needed in order to reach the other goals and dreams we have in our lives). On the flip side of that, we learn that dedication in this area will provide benefits that can help expedite us on our path towards achieving our big goals in ALL the other areas of our lives.
Let’s dive in a little deeper to answer the Lifebook questions regarding our health and fitness lifestyle. In each of these posts, I am going to be sharing with you my personal Lifebook — my beliefs, visions, purpose statements (my “Why”) and some of the goals I have set for myself in these categories. It’s likely that my goals and visions will not align or resonate with some of you, and that’s perfectly fine, that’s the beauty of Lifebook. It’s important to keep in mind that having a Lifebook is very personal and you will want to customize it in a way that is going to work for you and YOUR lifestyle. So, although it can be helpful to learn how others may have navigated through these categories to gain ideas and inspiration, at the end of the day, you will want to make sure that everything that goes into your Lifebook is a true reflection of your wants, desires and beliefs.
So, let’s start with the first question for this incredibly important category: what do you believe when it comes to your physical fitness and your overall health? In the Lifebook journey, we call this your “Premise”. Do you believe that you were given bad genes and therefore why bother setting big goals in this area? Do you believe that you don’t deserve to have a rockin body for one reason or another? Or, do you believe that keeping our bodies healthy is the greatest form of love and gratitude we can give to ourselves? Do you believe that if you work hard you can have a much healthier — even thriving lifestyle?
I have been blessed in my life with a higher-than-average metabolism. When I was younger, it allowed me to eat what I wanted and didn’t have to pay the consequences of having to deal with weight struggles. However, as I age, my metabolism has slowed down tremendously and the bad behaviors of my youth have caught up to me (Oh, hello Karma!). So, when I was creating my Premise for the Health and Fitness Category, I knew it was time to finally rewire my brain once and for all and be more intentional and deliberate in this area of my life. The two premise statements for my Health and Fitness Category are:
· My body is a gift and I am passionate about what I put into my body and also how I use my body.
· Discipline and dedication are the only way to achieve the results I desire.
The second question to answer in the Health and Fitness Category is: what do you really want your health and fitness lifestyle to look like (i.e. your Vision)? Be honest with yourself here. Set the work that would be needed to reach this vision aside for a moment, if you could sculpt your body, choose how long you are going to live, select the amount of energy and focus that you have each day, what would this look like for you? This is your Health and Fitness Vision. Here’s my vision:
· I feel and look amazing and have the mental and physical vitality to live every moment to the fullest.
I think the vision that you choose in this category will help to drive the future visions that you will be making in each of the subsequent categories considering how closely this category is lnked to the other areas of our lives.
Now for the third question: why do you desire this vision? Why does it matter? If you have a desire to live a long and healthy life, why does this matter to you? If your dream is to run in a marathon and to continue to be physically fit for the rest of your life, why is this important? Our Purpose Statement really provides the deeper meaning behind our “wants” and “desires”. A clearly defined purpose will help to guide and steer you towards how you want your personal story to go. Here is my Purpose Statement:
· My purpose is to be in optimal physical health to have the energy to accomplish my life goals and to look and feel amazing for the rest of my life.
The final step is to create the goals/strategies that are going to help you achieve your vision. Here’s where you get honest with yourself around what needs to happen to reach your vision and to take the ownership towards committing to the steps that will be necessary to get you there. They need to be strategies that you are willing to commit to. It makes no sense to include a strategy if you are not willing to commit to the effort needed to accomplish your goals and because your Lifebook is personal and for your eyes only (unless you’re a little nutty like I am and decide to share it with the world) it’s important to be honest with yourself on what you’re truly willing to commit to get the greatest value from the program.
The biggest strategy that I have incorporated into my life that has made a tremendous difference is what I call my Habit Tracker (in the Lifebook Program, this would be called your “12 Sacred Choices”). This is a document that I refer to daily that allows me to track the behaviors and activities that I am trying to build as habits into my life. This tool has been unbelievably beneficial for me! I choose the habits I want to build into my life and then I take responsibility for holding myself accountable via the daily tracker.
Many of us can relate to joining a weight loss or exercise program that have tracking tools and/or planners associated with them, right? Unfortunately, for most of us, these trackers and planners just don’t work long-term. I believe the failure rate of them is so high because they have been designed by other people who have different motivations, goals, and desires than we do.
For the best possible chance for success, we should be the creators of our own trackers and planners. You are the only one that is really going to be able to know what motivates and drives you. You are the only one that will be able to say whether the goals you are setting are achievable (but also stretch you).
So, what strategies could you put into place that can help guide you towards your health and fitness vision? Consider both the macro strategies (wanting to lose 20 pounds, for example) and micro (drinking a green smoothie). Be realistic but also be willing to stretch — that’s the only way we will reach our big dreams (think SMART goals)!
Ok, that’s it for today! In the next post, we will be talking about our Intellectual Life and, I can tell you right now that it’s about way more than whether we’re “smart” or not. If gaining the wisdom to evolve as a human is a goal of yours and/or intrigues you, I think you’ll enjoy this post.
Finally, if you have a desire to take this information to a much deeper level by creating your own personal Lifebook, head on over to my website at JenTrumm.com for more information.