Last week, at the CHRISTUS Livewell Conference I shared how WE, (me included) as women, can allow the need to be perfect rob us of our confidence. You see, perfection is an unattainable goal so when we are unable to achieve perfection, feelings of failure, guilt and insecurity can happen. One of the areas that can be a struggle is the desire to be Healthy and Fit. There is the mindset that if you are going to be healthy and fit, you must be perfect with exercise and diet.
I have seen and worked with many women to create a fitness and food design who feel they must look, exercise and eat perfectly 100% of the time. Then when they feel they “slip up”, they quickly give up. It is an all or nothing attitude but it is important to remember three things:
- Failure teaches how to train, prepare or eat differently the next time. Have you ever said, “I blew it, so what is the use?” Instead, of giving up, stop and assess how you might do things differently the next time. That would be progress. Learning how to manage food is a process.
- If you feel the need to ALWAYS do it perfectly, you may miss out on a memory. Being so consumed with diet and exercise may keep you from enjoying those special times for enjoying an occasional ice cream with a child. Skipping YOUR workout to go for a light walk with a girlfriend may be more important that day for you emotional well-being than your physical.
- It does not have to be perfect to be healthy. Have you ever said, I only have 20 minutes today and can’t go to the gym, why bother with exercise? What could you do in 20 minutes? Some of my best workouts have been in my living room when short on time.
What about feeling like you can’t cook everything fresh or “organic” so you opt to eat out? Do you really believe it would be better to eat out than make a semi homemade meal at home? And who said EVERYTHING had to ALWAYS be organic.
Quitting when you think you have not lost enough weight or your workouts and diet are less than perfect is failure. Picking yourself back after a slip up, learning from it and staying consistent will give you results. It is about BALANCE. Striving to be perfect with exercise and diet only leads to frustration.