Plenty of people exercise because they think they have to, or eat well because they think they should, or do any number of other things out of a sense of obligation, or guilt, or fear.
But there are plenty of people who don’t act from that perspective. Lots of people exercise (or, “work out”) because it feels good and makes them a stronger, more capable human being, helps them sleep at night, and enables them to live the life they want to live. And they follow a generally healthy diet also because it feels good and supports their activities. For sure, once you’ve experienced your body on a clean diet the alternative can lose it’s appeal. (And for the record – most of us aren’t perfect. Notice I said generally healthy diet.)
Changing “I have to…” to “I get to…” is more than a simple expression of gratitude for an abundance and freedom that many don’t have. It’s a mindset that keeps you focused on the good. Couldn’t we all use a bit more of that these days?
I’m reminded of a friend telling me about their first Ironman triathlon. He was somewhere deep into the 26.2 mile run (after having swum 1 mile and biked 125). He ran by someone holding a sign that said: “There will come a day when you can’t do this. Today is not that day”. At that point he felt blessed to be there. Grateful for the ability to train that hard and live that fully. We don’t have to be an athlete at that level to appreciate this. If you’ve ever worked your way back from an injury that kept you on the sidelines of your own life then you can relate.
Equally important: those who are listening will hear this switch too. “I get to (put your preferred form of exercise here) today” is a way to spread health. It can go viral. Imagine being around someone like that. Or a whole group of people. It’s pretty powerful stuff.
Nothing changes until we change our mind. And if the thoughts you attach to every day and allow to guide your decisions reflect gratitude, opportunity, abundance and curiosity – things can change pretty quickly. Just for a day (or three), make the switch. See what happens. Think it. Live it. Feel it. Speak it. It’s a game changer.
*Thanks for the spark DB. And the memories AMcK.