What do you do when you F— it all up?
What do you do when you F- it all up?
You had the best of intentions.
You were off to a great start.
You’d made so much progress.
You’d gotten so much stronger.
The workouts were easier.
The pants fit better.
Things were really starting to fall into place…and then.
And then something knocked you off-course or for a loop.
An illness in the family.
A super stressful event or period of time.
And then…you find yourself struggling again, feeling like a failure, feeling shame you ‘couldn’t hack it,’ that you let yourself down, or family or friends down….
To even the best of us. From time to time, we all struggle.
Some life event impacts our routine, disrupts our ‘normal,’ causes resistance, or throws us back into old coping mechanisms.
Sometimes this means we stop working out—or working out as much. Sometimes this means we stray too far and too long from our better, more healthful eating patterns. Sometimes this means we burn the candle at both ends, leaving ourselves a fried mess unable to cope—or using unhealthy or unhelpful coping mechanisms.
And we feel bad—because we KNOW better, right?!?
Again—it happens. What matters more, what matters the MOST, really, is what we do next.
So we F’d it up again. Well, done is done. We can either wallow in it, tell ourselves how weak and pathetic and stupid we are, thinking that berating ourselves will lead us to ‘behaving’ again, or….Or.
Or we can do a few of these things:
1. Acknowledge our F-Up.
Name it, own it, then leave it behind us. Done is done, and no good comes from beating the proverbial dead horse; clinging to our ‘failings’ actually prevents us from growing and changing. Move on!
2. Look for the Lesson.
As much as we might hate it, there’s always a lesson in those hard moments and times, or an opportunity for personal growth.I’ve learned over time, through dealing with and recovering from numerous injuries and health issues over the years, that there’s always something that can be learned out of an illness or injury.
Sometimes that means learning to literally DO things differently—in the gym or at home.It can mean learning how much eating well impacts how we feel or makes or breaks our health.
Sometimes it means reevaluating our lifestyle, and cutting out the things that really aren’t working FOR us, even if those changes are unpopular.
Sometimes it means checking our ego at the door—either the ego that’s prompting us to do things that aren’t good for our bodies because we think we can or should or have something to prove, or the ego that screams at us: “I want what I want and I want it right NOW and I deserve it right NOW,” like an angry toddler would.
Whatever knocked you off-track, hung you up, derailed your efforts, or sidelined you (temporarily), there IS a lesson in there.
Look for it, ask the hard questions:
- What did I do to get myself here?
- What do I need to do to get myself OUT of here?
- And what can I do to avoid doing this again??
3. Take action—NOW.
It doesn’t have to be huge or perfect, it just needs to be action.
- Start by eating a veggie at your next meal or snack.
- Get up and go for a walk.
- Do a few squats or push ups.
- Read an article or book that helps you ‘grit it up’ a bit more.
- Listen to a podcast that inspires you.
- Call someone who supports you (not an enabler, but someone who loves you and will help you take the next step forward).
DO NOT TEXT OR EMAIL OR SEND ANY KIND OF ELECTRONIC MESSAGE—CALL THEM. You know, in real time, just like the good ole days 😉
4. Use the Lesson(s) to make a new plan.
- What did you learn from this experience?
- Where did you ‘fall down’ or where did things go sideways on you?
- What can you do to be derailed LESS by this same kind of situation, should it happen again?
- What can you do to avoid the same, or a similar, pitfall?
- What resources do you need?
- What kind of planning do you need to do?
- And how are you going to go forward, from right where you’re at, right now?
5. Just get moving. Keep moving. Find a mantra or create a mantra, and put that puppy all over the place.
Mantras can add to our grit, shore up our commitment to a goal or project–even when it’s not going well; mantras can help refocus us when we feel like we’re on the ropes. They can create positive energy, and keep us focused on moving forwards and doing our best.
And if you don’t have one yet, maybe finding a short, meaningful and memorable saying is just the thing you need to help keep you motivated, focused and positive!
As Mahatma Gandhi said,
“Your beliefs become your thoughts,
Your thoughts become your words,
Your words become your actions,
Your actions become your habits,
Your habits become your values,
Your values become your destiny.”
And remember this, above all else:
“Failure is not in the falling down, but the staying down.”
If you’re not sure where to start, your fitness or nutrition have been lagging, let’s chat!
We can get on the phone, or email or FaceTime or Skype, etc, and start working out a plan to get you heading in a better direction again. 20 minute ‘Recharge’ chats are totally complementary 🙂
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org
And if you’ve fallen off the workout ‘horse,’ try climbing back on with this simple ladder workout you can do pretty much anywhere! https://youtu.be/BZF91zEUBZU
Keep your head up and keep moving forward!