Mo Farah didn't get up one day and just run a marathon, Steve Jobs didn’t wake up one day and start Apple, and Sir Edmund Hillary wasn’t born climbing Mount Everest.
How often do we look around at others who are further down their journey and wonder why we aren’t “there” yet? I guess it’s hardly surprising when you think everywhere seems to suggest that we’ll only really be happy and healthy when we get …. [to the destination of] …the perfect; body, car, job, partner, salary, pet, kitchen… [fill in your own blank destination!].
Just like it's an illusion to think that a great athlete woke up one morning, without training or preparing, so our physical, mental, emotional or spiritual health and wellbeing doesn’t just happen by accident.
Our health and wellbeing is often a direct consequence of our daily choices – both conscious and unconscious.
These choices add up over time. Like steps along a track, each step takes you a little further from your starting point.
If you aren’t careful or occasionally contemplate your direction, you could end up going round and round in circles, off track, or perhaps even worse and fall off the mountain! The same can be said of being intentional about where we are heading regarding our health and wellbeing. Just like taking steps along a journey, we need to make healthy choices more than once if we want to keep heading in the right direction. Being intentional needs to become part of a regular lifestyle routine or habit – just like an athletes training programme.
So why don’t we live with a mindset like that everyday? Probably because just like the athletes, suddenly making healthier choices, when you’ve spent most of your life going with the flow requires discipline and change.
Being disciplined is hard work.
Being disciplined requires support and accountability if new habits are to be repeated so often enough that they become normal, and requires prioritising what's often important rather than urgent. This is hard work when the destination seems so far away – like reaching the peak of the mountain!
Then when we assume everyone else has life sorted, we can end up feeling rubbish and fed up – leading to comfort eating, impulse spending, and watching mindless TV under a big cosy comfort blanket (or is that just me then?)
Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't you are probably right! Henry Ford
So when standing at the bottom of a mountain like Everest, looking up can seem daunting. Seeing someone at the top and thinking you can be right there with them in only a few minutes will only set you up for disappointment and frustration.
But standing at the bottom and instead looking for; a Sherpa to guide and support, a basecamp as a starting point, or likely steps and obstacles along the way, could lead you to a slow and steady but sustainable planned route for getting you well on your way. Preparation, practice and regular training will also mean you are much more likely to both succeed at reaching the summit, but also enjoying the journey. And it’s the same with our health and wellbeing.
Whether you are thinking about aspects of your; Physical health (weight, muscle-tone and core balance), Mental health (negative thoughts, feelings, stress and rest), Emotional health (including a sense of purpose and belonging and connecting with others), or looking after your Spiritual health (your faith, values, beliefs, principles, and morals) it is good to view your health and being well as a journey, rather than a point to reach - helping keep your perspective right, and keep you on the right track.
Download our FREE Intentional Health journey workbook by clicking the picture below to help get you started on your journey.
And lastly, it’s worth remembering that what you see at the bottom of the mountain is completely different than what you will see on the way up!
Click on the workbook image to download your FREE Intentional Health Workbook, inspiring you to live a healthier, happier life.
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