“Deciding means jumping in all the way, doing whatever it takes, and going after your dreams with the tenacity of a dateless cheerleader a week before prom night.”
― Jen Sincero,
I have never been a cheerleader – although dateless most of my high school years, I never had the short shirt, pigtails or carved out calf and quad muscles. So part of this quote I understand, but we get what Jen is trying to convey – being tenacious is what’s important regardless of your current or anticipated future situation; and let’s be honest, most of us suck real bad at it, including me.
I haven’t written anything in over a year. I have had a year of fumbles, loss, confusion, growth, weight loss and many, many firsts. I have been trying to figure out what my first blog post should be after so long. Does it need to be earth shattering, peppered with amazing memes and sarcastic undertones that reminds readers that this weight loss thing is a life-long gig and there really isn’t any finish line? I decided I’m not bursting back into the writing world with anything too revolutionary but commit to write the truth. And here it is.
Have you ever, wholeheartedly decided something – like, every cell of your being filled with tingles that you couldn’t stand it anymore, and you knew, if the world were to end yesterday, you were in the exact spot you were meant to be?
Big question, right?
Well, for me, I never truly decided to get healthy, to embrace working out, to pick the broccoli over the white pasta or really believe all the writing I was offering you for so long. The decision was never made (writers note: I have a feeling this may be more of a stream of consciousness thing so I humbly ask for your patience).
My last major blog entry was about a weight gain I experienced during a rough patch in my journey. This experience was something I had never been faced with, but trying to pull my favourite printed pants over my ass last December proved something was definitely up. I had been satisfied with knowing I was 85 lbs lighter, leaner, and kinda hotter, but in that moment when proof of my decisions were no longer supporting my long-term goals, I felt crushed and I needed a plan.
So I got a coach. I did. And she is awesome. I have since embraced my passion of coaching others and have helped over 50 ladies in realizing their potential and my life is on a great track. I continue to offer my boot camps and virtual training, but the majority of time is on online coaching; but in light of all this, I still haven’t decided. While my fitness and nutrition are leading back to a leaner ass, stronger body and cleaner diet, I so easily get caught up in doing for others. I decided I needed to get back to me. I have started small – in doing thing that bring me tingles again.
Isn’t it amazing how quickly we can lose touch with what we loved so much? For me, it is writing, sharing, experiencing, reading, learning, and continuously improving where I am today to be more… And I was falling short before. Even after gaining that 40 pounds and committing to get back to me, I didn’t. I didn’t because I didn’t decide.
Okay, Adina, get to the point.
Here it is.
I just finished reading a book on vacation and a number of very raw and true parts have stuck in my brain the way snow gets stuck on the underbelly of your long-haired dog playing in the front yard. The one section that has haunted me in a really great way, was on decision making.
We are faced with choices every day – brush your teeth, say I love you, hold a grudge, breakfast vs. running out the door, what you say, do, feel. All choices. But when it comes down to decisions we sometimes falter. Here is the distinction as borrowed from “The Thin Difference”:
Decision: the act of or need for making up one’s mind.
Choice: the right, power, or opportunity to choose.
When you dive in deeper, the origins of the two words are interesting. Decision comes from “cutting off” while choice comes from “to perceive.” Taking the origins and definitions together, we may gain some clarity.
With decision, it is more of a process orientation, meaning we are going through analysis and steps to eliminate (or, cut off) options.
With choice, it is more of a mindset approach, meaning we have a perception of what the right or wrong choice may be.
Sincero put it very black and white. When you decide, as the root of the word suggests, you cut off; you go ALL IN. You can’t decide and then say, “Well, just this once”. The reality is, once you decide, you decide. There is no tinkering, worrying about what may happen, let fear take over – deciding fills your soul, even if you feel like throwing up.
My health journey has been rooted in choices every day, but never a decision to do it. I have told you, so often dear read, of my intentions. But as we know saying we are going to do something and 100% wholeheartedly committing by deciding is so very different. Intention vs. Action. Choices vs. Decision. It is final. It has no chapter that follows. It just is. Just do…
What are you needing to decide? Me, a lot, I guess. Do I wake up every morning and put off my workout, or do I do it because it is decided? Do I pick off the plates of my lils after they are upstairs brushing their teeth to start their day? – admit it moms and dads – we all do it! Do I put my clients’ needs before mine in the morning? Do I put in 100% in my business today and then fuck off tomorrow because I realize it’s a lot of work?
We need to decide – which means you do the work – every darn day. Full. Stop. And decide and cut off all the other shit we allow to get in the way.
I decided to leave my career. It was a decision. I didn’t sorta quit, or kinda decided. I made my decision on a Friday afternoon with no back up plan. I decided because I needed to cut off all the stuff that was making me tired and jaded and that was getting in the way of me doing something a what I was doing. I knew that to be true. And man, every cell of my body was liberating without regret!
Our decisions are not easy. Stay or leave. Burger or salad. Couch or gym. Do you wholeheartedly commit to staying? Then stay, but don’t talk about leaving. Do you 100% want burgers in your diet? Or does the decision to cut them out of your life fall in line with your goals? Is sitting on the couch while you read this (I know, it feels soooo good) going to get you to the health you say you want? Then the gym it is until you feel you have earned the right to that time on that couch.
We need not negotiate our lives with ourselves anymore. We deserve what’s on the other side of fear, and the question then becomes, how do you decide to move forward with the choices you are battling? How do you know if it is the right time to go all in?
I have had split second decisions to make in my life; we all have. And I find in those moments it is the push, the ‘no way out but out’ that has forced my hand to say THIS IS WHAT I AM DECIDING. Do we all need to be at the do or die stage to finally decide? I don’t think so. Some of us are tired of living the lies; others are just mentally and spiritually ready. I had a conversation with someone last night and said she was finally ready to start her health journey because for the last year she had been working on her mental state. She felt that this go around would be just that – setting herself for failure because the real work had been ignored before. She struggled with depression, anxiety, panic attacks and a lot of challenges. Knowing that her mental readiness what not there, she decided that needed to be the first focus. That was her decision in that moment when she felt she hit rock bottom and she could no longer live in fear. She sought medical support and now is ready, a full year later, to start moving her body and eating inline with her goals. That was an amazing decision she made based on what she needed and most importantly, what she knew she deserved.
Maybe we need to stop playing the choices game and decide it’s time to cut off.
What choices are you being faced with right now, in this moment. Are you willing to decide in line with that which will grow you spiritually, emotionally, physically? Or do you still need to do some mental work to get you to the place where you can decide?