Stuck in a health rut? Typically this kind of rut involves a degree of excessiveness or poor choices regarding food, alcohol, caffeine, smoking, exercise, work, recreational drugs and even spending money. Often it’s hard to change these habits because they’re providing a source of happiness or distraction and at the same time creating a cycle of dependency by squashing the bodies natural sense of motivation and positivity.
Poor lifestyle choices make for poor health, it’s really that simple but I know I telling you to just stop drinking alcohol and eating pastries is futile if we don’t address the reasons why you do these things.
To help clients climb out of their rut I often use some tactics that we’ve employed to help us run our business more efficiently. The reason being experiencing discomfort will often lead you to seek comfort and I often feel out of my depth when it comes to operating a business. A difficult business situation will undoubtedly cause me to want more peanut M&M’s and I need strategies in place to help me manage and cope with these situations better.
Here’s some steps and questions that I often use with clients to help them make progress and climb out of their rut:
1) Bring It Back to You And What’s Not Working
Even though my consultations with clients are based around discussions on health I often ask some questions that allow me to gain an insight into their sense of fulfilment and purpose in life, what they look forward to in their day, what stimulates them and provides them with a sense of achievement. Sometimes I might ask question directly on this topic as I’m struggling to see find answers, which is a big clue as to why they might be stuck in a health rut.
Many clients often respond with an answer that suits the needs of someone else. Often in life you get easily wrapped up thinking about what you SHOULD do or who you SHOULD be and you’ve lost sight or forgotten about who you are and what you really want.
Many people are often leading a life that they’ve fallen into and it’s takes headspace and some long walks to really figure out if it’s fulfilling your needs. Many business coaches haul entrepreneurs out of their business for a few days and with good reason, so you can stop distracting yourself by keeping busy and instead stop to consider some fundamental, possibly intimidating questions. I do the same with clients, we stop talking about how much alcohol or cake and start to question WHY these are so important in your life, what gaps are they filling?
The answers might be difficult to swallow and involve accepting things you’ve been denying for some time, this is often the hardest part. However, once you acknowledge the need for change the clarity will come and allow you to take control, which in turn will enable you to sort out your health once and for all.
2) Consider What You Really Really Want
Part of running a business requires you to regularly ask yourself “What do you really want to achieve?” I’m often a bit stuck for words when business mentors ask me this question. I’m so buried in the day-to-day running of a business I’ve not really had time to come up for air and contemplate what I really want in life.
It’s a question I also ask my clients to consider this and they’re often not sure of the answer. If we were playing Family Fortunes right now “fat loss” would be the top answer here and yet really this is just a process you may need (or may not need in some cases) to undergo to achieve your goals in life. It shouldn’t be your only goal.
Increasingly I’m having to remind people to find a better life focus as achieving fat loss and maintaining your health shouldn’t be a full time job. By asking yourself what you really want out of life and taking some steps towards it you will often acquire a renewed sense of energy and enthusiasm as your day takes on a new meaning.
The people around you also play an integral role too, if they question your ability and ambitions (often due to their own insecurities) sadly they could be a part of your rut and maybe it’s time to re-think your team.
I’m lucky in that Matt’s a great influence on me and a key player in helping me achieve a number of things way beyond my own vision of “not failing” by constantly asking me what I really want in life and giving me the confidence to go out there and make it happen. He’s really the Del Boy of Fitter Food and I’m Rodney worrying about the detail and consequences, but together we often read biographies and watch films based on inspirational true stories to remind ourselves of the possibilities out there. This excitement alone is a big part of life that decreases your need for alcohol, cake and credit cards.
Consider what would make you leap out of bed in the morning and make sure you’re making it happen. We get once chance to be here and live this life, don’t waste it.
3. Take Action
At the age of 18 I suffered from a bit of a happiness deficiency at university. One day my housemate convinced me to go for a run and I lasted 5 minutes before stopping to wheeze against a fence. On our return home I noticed how much better I felt for the fresh air, company and colour in my cheeks. Despite how impossibly hard that run was it was my first fling with some exercise endorphins so I went out again the next day. Running rescued me by helping to lift my mood, boost my confidence and lose some weight, however, perhaps more importantly it provided me with an important lesson in life and that is to take action. I realised I could either sit and wallow in unhappiness or actually do something about it. That first run is the reason Fitter Food exists, because just doing something immediately made me feel empowered and in control. The more action you take, the more clarity you gain about what you really want.
When we have a business dilemma Matt and get out of the house and often head to our favourite coffee shop with pen and paper. We list our options, consider outcomes and have a back up plan. This process alone changes our outlook as we’ve taken control of the situation.
If you want to climb your way out of your health or life rut, start by grabbing a pen and pad and writing down a few things, seeing it on paper will help you acknowledging where you are, what your needs are and what needs to change. Then list some key options and first steps to action. It helps to also COMMIT immediately by telling someone that will hold you accountable or sending an email, booking that course or making that phone call – just take action.