When they doubt themselves, we are easily able to inspire, encourage, and invigorate them up with all sorts of compliments. As importantly, we truly believe what we’re telling them too.
There are “big picture” and “smaller picture” health choices.
A lump in one’s breast is “big picture.” Finding time to take a walk or choosing between deep fried or grilled chicken could be classified, “smaller picture.” Granted making enough wise “smaller picture” health choices is a “big picture” issue in the end. However for discussion sake, “big picture” issues are beyond the control of the every-person, requiring action without delay. “Smaller picture” issues provide choice and possess the luxury of time.
So, although lowering my sodium intake today, a smaller picture issue, will not have a direct affect in the immediate, it could – over time — determine whether or not I get high blood pressure and a stroke, a definite “big picture” issue.
The “big picture” is made of infinite “small pictures.”
“Big pictures” require more knowledge to correct than do “small pictures.” As example, no one has the wherewithal to preform self-administered angioplasty after suffering a myocardial infarction. Conversely, when it comes to the “small picture,” we usually possess enough understanding to know what to do. It doesn’t take a cardio surgeon’s expertise to know that a deep dish, 12-meat-special, 24-inch pizza infused with gooey, dripping, cheese crust is not as healthy as a veggie stir-fry. One need not be an Olympic athlete to recognize that a morning walk is healthier that catching up with gossip on “The View.” Even non-scholars comprehend that reading is a superior way to relax than is the third martini.
We appreciate these to be true. Moreover, unlike “big picture” decisions, we maintain control over our decisions and actions.
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Have you ever really truly analyzed how much of what we do is by rote?
Paying for groceries, the clerk asks,
“How are you?”
Our expected reply, stated without thought:
“Fine, how are you?”
Continuing the script she responds, “Great,” and upon finishing the transaction, adds the obligatory, “Have a nice day.”
Did she really care?
Should we opt to spill our guts about the problems we’re having with aging, would she request the other shoppers stand elsewhere while she counseled, consoled, and cajoled us? Survey says: Not a chance. The brief exchange near the cash register is a pre-ordained, almost-required, nicety; it’s just “what we do.”
That just scratches the surface; dig deeper and discover how much of our lives are run by autopilot.
Picture a typical weekday; we either arise with the help of an alarm — that pushes us to consciousness at the exact same moment as every other weekday — or we don’t use one at all. Upon rising, patterns control everything from the order of our morning constitutional to the clothes we choose. We are either “breakfast eaters” — or not. It’s not “I am” one day and “I’m not” the next. The average grocery store stocks over 40,000 items; yet even those of us who opt for breakfast choose from fewer than a handful of items every morning, the same selections we had yesterday and will eat tomorrow.
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Do not, however, make the mistake of expecting that simply because you made a plan, it will go as expected. That’s an exercise in futility.
It’s much smarter to assume that your plan will only go perfectly until you start it. After that, as they say, “Life is what happens while you’re making other plans.”
When things get tough, keep your head down and your eyes on the prize. (OK, that’s a mixed metaphor which technically would only make sense if your goal was to look at your shoes – but you get the point.)
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Note: We recently launched of a seminar series, “Five Things You Must Know To Make Your Life Better.” As part of that series, one of the things we went over were the “10 Commandments of Changing Habits.” This is one of those “commandments.”
Thou shalt be free from long-term binders.
However, while on the path, go boldly and proudly.
Every Monday, a new motivational memo is posted by Scott “Q” Marcus, Motivational Weight Loss Expert for Baby Boomers and Life Balance and Productivity Expert. Subscribers to 21DayHabitChange.com and Scott’s coaching service get this – and many more benefits – sent to them directly. If you’d like to get these delivered to your email box (and get a free motivational book of quotations downloaded to your computer), follow this link.