See end of post for a chance to win a GOT TO IT journal.
Think of your low energy, unhealthy body as a credit card loaded with debt. As you look back at the past several months of spending you’re amazed at how easy it was to blindly exceed your limit. You’re surprised and a little ashamed at how much you’ve managed to spend without really thinking about it. You didn’t imagine it could add up so fast. Not only does the situation feel rotten, but now you have to figure out a way to manage the debt or things will only get worse.
Surprise, surprise, it will be a lot more difficult to pay down the debt than it was to rack it up. #@$%! Sound familiar?
Perhaps you depended on your credit because you didn’t have a whole lot of extra money kicking around, so it stands to reason that repayment of the debt will require a little discipline. Given these circumstances which debt reduction strategy would make best sense to you?
- 1) Randomly drop a large lump sum of money onto your credit card when you have extra cash kicking around.
- 2) Wait to win the lottery, and while living in that fantasy do nothing to improve your situation.
- 3) Commit to regular smaller payments every week based on what your budget can handle.
All in Good Time
If your low energy, unhealthy body is the painfully maxed out credit card you wish you’d never lost control of, think of your available time as the payments you need to make in order to get rid of the debt. How you manage those payments could mean the difference between reducing your debt or living with the challenge of high interest rates and poor credit ratings.
Equally, how you manage your time could mean the difference between finally prioritizing health or continually chasing for change in a low energy, unhealthy body.
Option number one – lump sum payments – could make a dent in your debt if you’re lucky, but with so much time between payments and low cash flow to begin with you risk spending the savings before you get to the bank. Or worse yet, you may lose discipline for your debt reduction plan altogether.
Now apply the same logic to mending your low energy, unhealthy body. You can wait until your schedule allows enough time and energy for a decent, lung and muscle busting workout but if that only takes place every week or so results will be lost between efforts and you’ll be frustrated from lack of results. Not only that, but you’ll risk being sore and tired every time you workout and likely lose interest before long.
Scenario number two may sound like a joke but you’d be surprised at how many people actually plan to win the lottery to solve their financial woes. The chances of that happening are about as likely as you getting the answer to years of physical abuse on the body through watching those crazy ‘one-pill-and-the-pounds-melt-away’ infomercials. Even still, there are those who continue with the fantasy waiting for energy in a bottle, instant weight loss in a capsule or perfect abs “in just 3 days”. It’s like winning the lottery. Chances are slim so I hope you have a back-up plan.
Take Care of the Pennies and the Pounds Look After Themselves
That leaves the third alternative; smaller payments every week based on what your budget will allow. Ten dollars here, twenty-five there, another fifty next week; or perhaps a steady 2 bucks a day…dull and disciplined though it may seem (or perhaps because of it) this method actually stands a chance of bringing you success.
With small, regular payments it may take longer until you see results, but the consistency of your efforts has other benefits. First off, the small consistent payments will make a real impact over time. Secondly, you’re creating a healthy habit around debt management. Due to the regularity of your efforts your debt-reduction goal stays front of mind and becomes a positive feedback mechanism that will reinforce healthy spending behavior.
Spending behaviors are likely to change to support success. You’ll start to look for ways to save more money. Eventually you may decide to make your coffee at home to avoid spending $4 a day at the coffee shop. That’s another $20 a week to debt reduction. Good for you!
Again, apply that logic to your low energy, unhealthy body. Just like your bank account, don’t you think your physical health would benefit from consistent, small efforts at exercise, eating more healthfully or getting more rest? A short walk today, less sugar tomorrow, take the stairs on Thursday, earlier to bed tonight. Ten minutes here, 15 there, more when you have it. Next week you take a few more hits at your health.
All the small efforts add up to feelings of accomplishment, more energy, perhaps a smaller waistline, and before long you’re looking for ways to do better for yourself, add in more time, or make an extra effort at change.
Of course bigger efforts would mean better results but only if you have the time and energy now! Here’s the truth; once you begin on your path, your time and energy will expand to welcome in success. Your small steps approach will create a positive feedback mechanism that will reinforce healthy behavior moving forward.
You could wait until you have enough time to do all those things ‘properly’ or you could start today with one small effort at change. Start today. Brilliant!
Don’t forget. Doing is better than thinking.
I’m writing a book and I would love your help. When it comes to day-to-day energy and vitality do you need energy or have you got energy? Complete the survey below that applies to YOU.
All responses will be placed in a draw for one of my GOT TO IT journals, and I may contact you about sharing more or your story in my book.
(Draw will be held September 30th and you will be contacted by email)
NEED ENERGY? Click this link and share your challenges
GOT ENERGY? Click this link and share your secrets!