Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Mental Principle #5: Rely on belief power, not will power

The number one factor for fitness success is consistency in exercise and diet, no matter what the focus is. Consistency can be had by being disciplined with a strong will power, but this is so rare in people. Most people rely on their will power to make them do things that they know they need to do, but don't necessarily want to. Human will power is terribly weak; it is downright feeble in fact. Look back at any point in history and we can see just how consistent humans are at displaying the pathetic power of our wills. The point is not to build up more individual will power or to feel horrible when it inevitably fails. Expect it to fail, it always does.

The better way to stay consistent is to build up your belief power, which is exponentially stronger, as our beliefs guide all our decisions and if they are truly strong allow for sacrifices. Think about it, people throughout history have died for their beliefs in country, religion, family, etc.

Will power is like a person fighting against the tide, they will quickly get exhausted and the waves will pound us back into the shore. In this metaphor the tide is the embedded belief, what you hold as a true constant, a force of nature, the way things are. When people deeply believe something is true and important they will sometimes do almost anything to show it, even sacrifice their lives. Now that is powerful. Think of "Will" as a small palm/stick shelter that will only hold for very short time under perfect conditions and no time at all in harsh conditions, compared to a "Belief" as a nearly impenetrable concrete and steel fortress.
dark brown logoTo stay inspired you must believe that your fitness goal is worth something. Unless you genuinely and deeply value your goal you won't be willing to make the small and sometimes large sacrifices that are always required to achieve it. The way to do this is by repeatedly asking yourself how much and why you want your goal. You need to be able to convince yourself strongly with valid reasons for why this is important to you. If you have to, ask yourself why you should commit after every workout or meal until you have an arsenal of reasons, an impenetrable belief and unlimited motivational resources.For fitness goals, here are a few reasons why you should believe they are valuable:
- self-confidence/achievement
- family/relationships
- physical/emotional health (studies)
- career, etc.

Often times there is already a negative or false belief or "myth" as I like to call them in place about yourself or the nature of things that we need to blow up in order to replace it with the positive, empowering belief. This is called "Myth Busting". These sometimes can come out in the midst of workout or diet struggles, "My body won't lose fat no matter what I do", "I cannot run any more/faster" " I have to have my chocolate/wine", etc. The person next to you probably doesn't find that to be the case, yet some people say it with such conviction as if it were true. These are the type of self sabotaging beliefs/myths that people hold onto and in a personal transformation they need to be broken. Usually the myths are simply a factor of having never done such things before. Basically this is fear of change, but if you want to change your body you have to change what you've been doing. When you start shifting your beliefs about yourself, fitness, food, training, etc. the inspiration and motivation have room to arise naturally.

Belief Building Questions:
  • How much do you believe in fitness to keep you healthy and feeling good?
  • What are you willing to sacrifice to get or keep your fitness?
  • How strongly do you believe in your fitness goal?
  • Do you really believe you are capable of accomplishing it?
  • Do you believe you NEED to accomplish it? Why?
Sometimes this shift in perspective/belief about your goal can seem subtle but it makes all the difference. Before you can get close to achieving your goal you need to believe that your goal is even possible. This is called "Creating the Possibility" and it starts with having the guts to write down a big challenging outcome goal. Sometimes in writing out all the short-term goals you may even start to second guess your ability to accomplish it but push through it because along the way as you hit these built in smaller successes your belief in yourself grows tremendously. Keep the possibility open to the big goal but focus only on the step in front of you which will build the confidence you need for the very next step and so on.

Remember - "Belief power is stronger than will power"

1 comment:

sabrina john said...

The point is not to build up more individual will power or to feel horrible when it inevitably fails. Expect it to fail, it always does. https://www.carlmontpharmacy.com