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A Brief Anecdote
My friend was raised in an extremely unhealthy family. They ate like garbage, and encouraged one another to do so. Exercise wasn’t important. Health wasn’t important. The family based their intimate time together on food binging. They shared a deep, happy bond.
Everyone in the family was overweight. Sometimes, one or two members might go on a crash diet and fluctuate. But most of the time, when they were together, they would eat and eat and eat. And that eating was considered normal.
It took my friend until his 30s to have a crisis moment. He didn’t want to feel this way anymore. He didn’t want to hate his body. He didn’t want to feel trapped feeling “less than.” It wasn’t until he moved out of the area that he had a crisis where he looked at himself and said: “Enough is enough. I’m doing something about this.”
That moment was a year and a half ago, and today, he has a Superhero chest and a six pack.
His commitment required a crisis. It wasn’t a casual desire. A monster that lingered beneath the surface of this man’s soul broke through the surface and said: “This stops now.”
Ask These 4 Questions
What change do you want to make, but your surroundings make it too comfortable to stop? What habits do you justify because they have an upside? What binges do you wish you could stop, but your friends and family keep you coming back for more — over and over again?
What dream did you give up on because you tried and failed so many times?
Today might not be your moment of crisis. It might take another year. Or 10 years. But there’s a scary possibility: What if your inner monster never rears its head and says: “Enough! We are changing.” What if that just … doesn’t happen?
You don’t have to invent some mega-plan to save your life today. All you have to do is honestly ask yourself these 4 questions:
- “What dream have I sacrificed?”
- “What benefit did I get for the sacrifice?”
- “Do I need to sacrifice the dream to get the benefit?”
- “What do I practically need to do to change?”
Just reflect on those 4 questions. Write them down on a napkin over lunch, and write snippet answers. Most people, within 30 seconds of honest reflection, have answers that they’ve been suppressing for over a decade.
Find Your Crisis
Lasting change doesn’t come through making grand promises and impractical commitments. It comes with a small but powerful moment of personal crisis: “I can’t put up with myself anymore. I’m becoming who I’ve always wanted to be.”
Take 5 minutes to ask yourself these questions. When you do, your path will become clear, discipline will become easier, and saying “No” to sacrificing your dream will become commonsense.