Plant Based Life: Why Do You Want to be Healthy? The magic trick to ensure you stick to your convictions.
You’ve decided to make a big change in your life. But you’re hesitant. You know it’s time, but it feels like toeing the edge of the high dive for the first time of the season. It’s going to be great, epic, exciting, wonderful, exhilarating… but you need a second to muster up your… your…courage? strength? You need to identify with your why.
Tapping in to Courage
When I was a kid toeing the edge of that epically high dive at the pool for the first time of the Summer, my “why” was to prove that I was braver than my big brother who was better than me at everything. To a nine year old, this was of EPIC importance, and was enough to send me running off the edge yelling “Cowabunga!” at the maximum volume that would ensure everyone saw me do it first. I ran fearlessly with a big toothy smile, even though on the inside I was sure I was plunging into instant death.
Hopefully, as adults, showing up our big brother doesn’t rate on the scale of importance to drive us to take huge leaps anymore. We need something deeper, more personal to us. So think about the reasons that you have decided to enter the possibly unknown waters of leaving the comfort and perceived safety of the “Standard American Diet” (known as the SAD diet in the plant based and vegan communities,) and begin your life Plant Based. You are perhaps thinking you will be judged, that you’ll do it wrong and will become malnourished, that you won’t have the willpower it takes to say no to your former favorite foods.
I’m here to tell you that you can take the leap. The secret to committing to something and making it stick is not complicated at all, but it will be a challenge. Here it is:
The answer to how to do ANYTHING, is to Decide. That’s it. Make the decision.
“Easy words!” You may think, “but..”
STOP! Stop right there with the but and remove it from your vocabulary. As Tony Robbins would say, “I refuse to negotiate with myself.”
Don’t make deals with yourself. Deals like,
“I will start when…”
“If this happens, then…”
“When this clears out of the way, then…”
That’s all a bunch of bullcrap that won’t help you. My super successful good friend Phil said something to me a couple years ago as I was going on about what we in the personal development world call “my story.” These are the things you tell yourself to make the truth sting a little less. After patiently hearing me rattle on about my current woe, something about why I can’t earn enough money, which I considered to be a legitimate obstacle and an unfair block I couldn’t get around that wasn’t my fault, he looked me right in the eye and said, “Well, Britt, that’s a really cute fuckin’ story.” (This is the measure of a true friend.)
Owning the Inner Voice
You are much stronger than your self-defeating inner voice says you are. You are actually the boss of that voice, it is not the boss of you. If you are struggling with the inner voice of self doubt and are having trouble believing in yourself, then you have 100% authority over that voice to send it to the corner to write sentences. Sentences like “You are actually a badass who can do anything you want. Nothing, including and especially me, will get in your way. You decide, and so it is.”
OK so that’s the pep talk, but to push yourself to jumping off that edge, we need to discover your “Why.” That’s what this post is really all about. You won’t be able to decide, until you are completely in touch with your why.
What about Plant Based life motivated you in the first place? Did you see a movie? Are you having health problems? Do you want to lose weight, lower your blood pressure, get rid of type 2 Diabetes? Are you adamant about living a long healthy life? Do you want to be the pinnacle of health and have a sexy body? This is your reason.
You have defined what the reason is, but we aren’t done yet. We still need to find your “why.” Your why is really personal. You might not even want to share it. Did your doctor tell you that you were too heavy to be able to conceive? Have you wanted to be a mother more than anything your whole life? Ding! THAT is a why.
Did you watch a loved one suffer a heart attack, or a few? Are you following in the same footsteps? Will following that same route shorten your life, preventing you from seeing your daughter get married? Boom. That’s a why. Do you have a family pattern you want to break? Are you in recovery from substance or alcohol abuse, and want to add years back to your life? Are you 100% committed to being an example of health for others to follow? Find that out, but then dig into WHY you feel that way. Why is it so important to you? There is a deep rooted reason that goes further than “because I want to be super fit and as healthy as I can be.” Why?
When you keep digging until you get to the bottom of your why, that force will be so powerful that it will have you RUNNING off the end of the diving board, screaming triumphantly without fear! Well, there may be fear, but it will be that exhilarating, exciting, fun, sexy kind of fear that causes smiles to rip across faces.
Personal story: My Why
My why, I had thought, was because I wanted to be an example of health, I wanted to live a really long life.
Yes, true, but why?
“Because I have seen people who are unhealthy and I want to help them get healthy by leading by example, and I want to run around in a bathing suit looking good.”
Yes, makes sense, but why?
“Because I have seen people I love die, and I have people I love suffer from horrible problems associated with lifestyle choices. Because I have seen my friends become orphaned in middle age, and I want to be there for my kids.”
Now we are getting somewhere, but go deeper, will those reasons get you to jump off the ledge?
“No. It matters to me because I treated myself poorly for years. Stress, depression, smoking and drinking. My will to live wasn’t as strong in my youth as it is now. I have a beautiful family and I love myself. I want to be there for my kids when they have kids. I don’t want them to watch me die like I watched my Mom die, I won’t do it. “
Ding Ding Ding! Off she jumps in to the clear cool life giving waters below.
So do this exercise with yourself until the REAL TRUTH comes out. Once you have tapped in to your why, then deciding becomes the easiest thing. And once you have decided, there is no other way. Surround yourself with images depicting the positive outcome of your why. Surround yourself with people dedicated to becoming their strongest selves, and also determined to make a healthy life their non negotiable. Surround yourself with positive self talk and affirmations that you are worth it.
I sure think you are, and I’ve got your back.
Share this post with your friends! Please leave a comment and share your why and let me know what really matters to you. What is going to create enough force to cause change? When you dig all the way down to your why, there will be no stopping you.
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Britt- Your Kickin’ Vegan