By Jen Weiss
I admit that I often have an inner conflict. I preach the benefits of moderation as well as simple habits and how they can lead to big results. However sometimes, I want to forget all this and go all in on SOMETHING. I want to drop the moderation and attack a goal with everything I have.
Is there a right time to go all in or is moderation always the answer?
I went through a divorce three years ago. I remember telling my therapist that I was often disappointed that I wasn't doing more to challenge myself in my business and in my personal life. She pointed out that I was in fact tackling one big challenge (healing from the divorce) and maybe I should cut myself some slack.
And that has been my life for 3 years. I've given myself space, time and compassion to work through the pain and discomfort. I didn't have time or energy to throw myself into any major protect so I marched through those years steadily. I continued to exercise (of course), I slowly improved my business, I ate my veggies and protein—as well as indulging in mac and cheese, wine, and pizza when I wanted it.
I set no ambitious goals for myself and instead had the simple goal of consistency.
Then the holidays came around this year and although I approached them with apprehension after having struggled the previous two years, something was different this time. There was no undercurrent of sadness. I didn't mind that I was heading to visit friends and family without a partner; in fact, I truly appreciated the freedom of being single for the first time! I realized that things were not so much of a struggle as they used to be. People always told me, "It will get better with time." As much as I wanted to punch them in the face then while I was in the thick of it, I realized they were right.
And so now, I'm feeling the itch to challenge myself and turn up the intensity. Sometimes life is hard and we don't need to create extra challenges. We only have energy for the bare minimum. In this case, moderation and small goals make perfect sense.
Other times we're cruising along, maybe a little too comfortably and we have the time and energy to create some self-imposed challenges.
For me, this year is going to be a year of productivity. I started in mid-December with a 30-Day "No Alcohol Challenge." I had been trying to drink moderately but it just wasn't working. I wanted to know what it would feel like to have no alcohol in my system. I wanted better sleep, a clearer mind and more productive days. I'm about halfway through and so far, I'm really loving the results, especially better sleep.
In fact, when I finish, I'm going to start another 30-Day Challenge: No TV or Netflix. The thought of it scares me, which makes me think I definitely need to do it!
Are you all in?
Jen Weiss is a personal trainer, nutrition coach and online coach based out of Burlington, Vermont. She helps women build their confidence through strength training, sane nutritional coaching and self-care. When she's not sharing her passion for health and wellness she's climbing mountains with her terrier Oz or strumming Beatles tunes on the ukulele. Learn more about her at her website, Ironbunnyfitness.com.