Habit and Fear
|Sorry for missing the past two weeks, I’ll tell you that it’s because we were very busy here at Millennium Running, but that’s just an excuse. Just like all the ones I can probably string together for why I am only down 1 pound since my last post. That’s .5 pounds per week which puts me way off the pace. At some point I’m going to need to find out when Thom’s birthday is so I can get a timeline together.So I’ve been doing more thinking about healthy living rather than acting over the past two weeks.
I’m stuck in my habits, and I’m afraid of the discomfort associated with breaking out of those habits.
Habit and fear joining together are a huge force to overcome and are to blame for many of my faults.
I truly believe that it was habit and fear that kept me smoking for 23 years, not chemical addiction. I believe that the tobacco companies are very aware of the power of fear and are more than happy to have us believe that nicotine is as chemically addictive as heroin. That thought sparks imminent fear in smokers, not quitting today is less painful now than the possible health repercussions in the future.
On a very similar note, changing my current lifestyle habits would be uncomfortable right now. That fear of imminent pain and discomfort is more powerful than the thought of future pain and discomfort. When you think about it this way it’s very easy to understand how excuses for not getting up and exercising are so easy to come by. I can avoid the pain and discomfort of exercising right now by allowing myself to believe I can start exercising tomorrow. I don’t believe I’m going to die from not exercising right now, but I know there will be discomfort if I do exercise right now.
We can get off the couch to pee though, because not doing so would result in imminent discomfort.
For those that are reading this and thinking I am missing the obvious power of positive motivators, I’m not. They are just not as powerful as fear and habit. The positive results of a healthy lifestyle are great ‘maintenance motivators” used to remind you why you are making the changes or why you should continue on the right path. Those positive motivators are what help keep me away from smoking along with a healthy dose of fear.
|So I’m going to really start concentrating on the pain and discomfort associated with not aggressively pursuing a new healthy lifestyle.
I believe I can use the power of habit and fear against itself, creating healthy habits and positive change. My goal is to get myself to a place where I am afraid of getting back to this unhealthy state.
Anyway, this is what’s been on my mind for the past two weeks, I’ll see you again next week.
|About Keith Tharp:Keith has been part of the Millennium Running staff since the beginning of 2011 as a photographer and owner of Champion Photo. He officially joined the Millennium Running staff in 2012 as the Director of Marketing where he produces event graphics and specializes in website design, social media, photography. Keith is also a successful wedding photographer.|
There's always such an uncomfortable amount of pain/anxiety associated with great change, especially when habits are being changed… and ESPECIALLY lifelong habits. I, too, am a recent (jan 1 2011) non smoker, and quitting turned me into a horrible person for a few months. My whole body hurt, my mood was terrible, and my personal and professional life actually suffered because the withdrawals were so bad. BUT… I just stuck with it. I need to be here for my child… and there isn't a thing I wouldn't/couldn't do for her. That's also how I recently lost 50lbs… HUGE change. Lots of clean eating, low calorie, daily intense cardio.. it has been hard, but now it is FINALLY me. When your mind gets there, when you accept that the process will absolutely SUCK, but you have no other choice, you're well on your way. Embrace the suck. When you're on the other side of that, the huge amount of respect you feel for yourself is priceless… is worth every single moment of agony. Then, you find yourself running. LOL… trying new things that are hard and scary, with the possibility of failure. It's a beautiful place where falling down is ok.. just part of the AWESOME process of becoming a better you.
Thanks for your post. Nice reminder that a lot of us are in our struggles together.
Very inspirational, Keith!
gotta get in to that Millennium stuff…!