Why do we struggle to do things that are good for us?

This blog caught my attention. I thought I’d post a response.

The blog suggests that there are three reasons why we struggle to do things that are good for us (eg eat well, exercise.) 1. Lack of Awareness – we aren’t aware of what to do. 2. Lack of Permission – we don’t give ourselves permission to do what we know is good for us. 3. Obstacles or Road Blocks.

I’d like to respond to both of these thoughts, and then add a few thoughts of my own. My thoughts are based on my personal experiences using NLP (Neuro Liguistic Programming) and Mindfulness techniques.

Lack of Awareness

It’s true! we’re SO unaware of what  we need to do to look after ourselves. We live in an unnatural and unhealthy modern bubble that is damaging to our bodies and minds. Fortunately the mindfulness revolution is really beginning to spread. Businesses are changing, the government is seeing that there are benefits in the NHS and in education. I’ve previously written a blog on the subject of mindfulness based improvement in running. I really do believe a mindfulness based approach is an important one here – learning to increase our awareness of the present moment – surely that’s got to be a good thing! There are still a great many people charging around unaware that they are suffering from stress and living with a level of pain and discomfort that they simply don’t need to.

Like the boiling frog – we are sat in a pan of boiling water (stress) that is getting hotter and hotter and we’re unaware of it. Like a frog being dropped in to a pan of boiling water if we took a step back and realised how crazy our lives have become we’d jump straight out of the pan!

frogs in hot water

 

Lack of Permission

It’s true! We don’t give ourselves permission to look after ourselves. I actually got hostile looks in a meeting on wellbeing for teachers when I suggested that exercise could be a way to combat stress. It’s true though, it sharpens our mind and keeps us calm. The research is there to prove it. But still in many work places you are made to feel guilty for looking after yourself. There’s a kind of competition to see who can ‘do the most’ – and it’s not healthy. I’m guessing that if you’re reading this then you probably already give yourself a certain level of permission to look after yourself. Maybe it’s time to take it to a new level?

3) Obstacles or roadblocks

We all have plenty of these! I think our attitude is really key here. There are so many practical barriers here. I actually think that the WOOP method suggested in the blog might be a really good tool for tackling the next steps your might be wishing to take in your Chi Running if you have been ‘stuck in a rut’ and not able to motivate yourself to keep focussed. Why not choose a Chi Running focus and give it a go?

The Yoda Factor

The very title of the blog is wrong. The word struggle should probably be banned from our vocabulary. What does it imply? The very word implies that we might not succeed. I’d suggest that we should eliminate certain words from our vocabulary and definitely from our self talk when it comes to looking after ourselves. When you’re deciding whether to go out for a long run on a wet night or whether to take an easier shortcut to your route listen to your language. Try … struggle … these very words imply failure. Our self talk let’s us down. Pay attention to some of yours non-judgementally and maybe you should think about using kinder words instead.

“Do or do not – there is no try.”

– Yoda.

Chi Running 20 Day Challenge:

External Link

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