About six months ago, I started running regularly. Why? Because I was ten pounds overweight, lethargic, and addicted to carbs, wine, and sweets. I felt like crap…not just physically but also mentally. AND, I felt like a total hypocrite. I coach my clients on the importance of maintaining a healthy diet and exercise and I’ve always been one to walk my talk. It was time to get moving.
Honestly, it wasn’t that difficult to get started. I knew what kind of results I’d get if I could motivate myself to run at least three days a week and I wanted those results so damn bad that nothing was going to stop me. About three months into my new running routine, the novelty started wearing off. I’d dropped the ten pounds and was craving nourishing foods. I’d accomplished what I’d set out to do. So my mind started veering off track. “You got what you wanted…so we don’t have to do this anymore, right?”, said the little voice in my mind.
As a therapist, I know how psychology works. If you can continue a habit for at least six months, it becomes a hardwired part of your life. I want healthy habits to always be the standard in my life, so I knew I couldn’t give in to that voice that was persuading me to revert back to old habits. I kept going; I kept feeling good. And then it happened….
It got cold. It got dark. The six a.m. runs that rewarded me with seeing the sunrise disappeared and I found myself cold and in the dark, in what felt like, the middle of the night. Now, my alarm goes off at six and I lay in bed coming up with all sorts of reasons to not run. “It’s too cold. It’s too dark. It really isn’t safe to be out there alone. I could trip and get hurt. I could catch a cold being out there. My bed feels too good to leave it. I’ll do it tomorrow, or later, or next week. Who gives a shit about running anyway?”
But you know what? I KEEP FREAKING RUNNING. Know why? Because I can either have REASONS (aka. lame ass excuses) or RESULTS. After I run, I feel alive, powerful, accomplished, healthy, and I feel like I’m living like the person I want to be. When I don’t, those feelings of hypocrisy resurface and I feel lazy, tired, and demotivated. I no longer run to lose weight or curb cravings. I run because I know it makes me better…at everything. And it pushes me to break the habit of giving in to immediate gratification (excuses) in favor of practicing habits that will help me reach my full potential and live the life I want.
So here’s what you need to take away from all this: you have to choose between REASONS or RESULTS. You can’t have both. If you choose to have reasons, that’s fine, but you can’t complain when you don’t get what you truly want in life. If you choose results, that’s fine, but you have to commit to showing up and doing the work even when you don’t feel like it. Before you choose though, you should know that the only way to become the best version of yourself and live the life you imagine is to eliminate all excuses. It doesn’t matter what your goal is. You have to be willing to do whatever it takes to reach it in order to get where you want to be.
Now, I want to hear from you. Tell me about a result you wanted for yourself and what excuses you had to eliminate in order to achieve your goal. What did you learn from that experience and what advice would you give to others who are getting sucked into lots of “reasons”?
If you found this post helpful or inspiring, please share it with a friend. It might be just what they need to get going on making their dreams a reality.
Nicole C. Iacovoni, Founder & Executive Clinician, received her master’s degree in Clinical Social Work from The University of Denver. Utilizing scientific based techniques, she is masterful at helping clients navigate and address family transitions, mood management, relationship issues, life trajectory, and general self care concerns. She also provides financial management coaching to help clients break down the psychological and emotional barriers to maximizing their earning potential, managing money effectively, and building true wealth. Nicole has dedicated her career to building a wellness center where clients generate positive change, enhance esteem, overcome obstacles, and create a peaceful, well-balanced life course. Her vision has resulted in a multifaceted therapeutic setting that provides complete clinical services, including counseling and psychiatry, health and wealth coaching, and yoga instruction.