It doesn’t matter how far off the path you’ve strayed — you can always get back on track with your health and fitness goals with this one-step method. You don’t have to wait until tomorrow. You don’t have to wait until Monday. It doesn’t have to be a New Year’s resolution. Heck, you could’ve already broken your resolutions before the month of January even ends. It doesn’t matter!
Every moment is a chance to start fresh. You can make a choice to do something that aligns with your health and fitness goals at any time. Even if you literally just did something that took you off your path toward the life you want.
Are You Doomed if You Just Screwed Up Your Goal?
Let’s say you just went to town on half a chocolate cake and now you feel bloated and gross and regretful. When this happens, most people will think they screwed up for the day and that’s that. They give up. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
We all have moments of weakness where we revert to our vices to handle some sort of discomfort in our lives. Whether it be from stress, sadness, anger, fear, anxiety, or even boredom, unhealthy choices tend to be our default response. Then we may feel guilty about those unhealthy choices afterward when we realize they never solved the initial problem. This can create a negative cycle.
So the key is to break that cycle.
Let’s go back to the example of overindulging in chocolate cake. In addition to the physical discomfort you may be experiencing afterward, there are probably some negative emotions attached as well. Maybe you’re shaming yourself for not being able to control yourself. Maybe you feel like a failure or like you’ll never reach your goals.
If one of your goals is to reach your healthy weight, this can be an especially tough situation since overeating takes you further away from reaching that goal.
The One-Step Method to Getting Back on Track with Your Goals
Getting back on track with your goals can be done in one simple step:
Instead of dwelling on all the negative effects of the unhealthy choice, you’re going to think of something you can do at that moment that gets you closer to your goals.
It can be something small but it’s best if it’s something you can do right away. It’s important to select an activity you like doing rather than making it a punishment for yourself. If you hate running, don’t force yourself to go for a run after overeating. This should be a pleasant activity that makes you feel good.
Here are some examples of activities to get you back on track:
- If your goal is to get fit and you eat half a chocolate cake because you were stressed out about work, you want to choose an activity that puts you on the path to fitness. Instead of freaking out that the cake will set you back, move on and decide what you can do that would benefit your fitness. Perhaps go for a walk, do some yoga for digestion, hop on the trampoline, or any other physical activity that you actually enjoy.
- If you’re trying to quit smoking but you slipped and had a cigarette, choose to do something beneficial for your lungs afterward instead of beating yourself up. Do some breathing exercises for lung health or go outside and get some fresh air. Turn on an air purifier if you have one.
- If you’re trying to cut back on alcohol but you had a few too many, choose to nourish yourself with healthy foods and plenty of water to regain your equilibrium. Perhaps make a liver-strengthening smoothie or have a cup of antioxidant-rich green tea to support your liver.
- If your goal is to decrease stress in your life but you just blew up at your partner for leaving their dirty dishes in the sink yet again, you could listen to a guided meditation for stress on YouTube.
Why This One-Step Method Works to Get You Back on Track
The idea behind this simple one-step method is that it breaks the negative cycle of a negative emotion leading to an unhealthy choice then yet another negative emotion in response to that choice. Choosing not to dwell on an unhealthy choice and instead, moving on to an activity that gently redirects you back onto the path toward your life goals can help start a positive momentum that can grow stronger the more you do it.
The next time you fall off the wagon with your goals, try this one-step method instead of berating yourself. It doesn’t matter how many times you fall down as long as you keep getting back up. Stick with it and you’ll be on your way to achieving your goals!