Challenges Are a Part of Life: We Can Choose Some To Avoid Others
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We’re always going to face challenges. They’re a part of life.
However, there are some challenges we can CHOOSE to face to avoid others.
Hear me out.
This sentiment is also one that you may have seen elsewhere, there’s a whole “Choose Your Hard” thing out there, like this:
But, I want to connect it to health and wellness today.
Meal planning is hard and takes time. Struggling to figure out what to eat in the moment is also hard and takes time.
Tracking your food can be hard. Feeling uncomfortable in your skin is also hard.
Eating enough protein can be hard. Not eating enough, feeling less satiated, and not fueling our muscle growth is also hard.
Working to lose or gain weight is hard. Being over- or underweight can also be hard.
Scheduling time for fitness is hard. Being weak or “unfit” is also hard.
Eating nutritious and hearty foods can be hard. Being unhealthy or sick is also hard.
Now, I don’t give those examples to say that if you do one you automatically avoid the other. There are plenty of people who eat well and, unfortunately, still get sick. There are also plenty of people who don’t plan/prep foods and pick meals just fine.
The point is that sometimes we decide NOT to make changes, or not to try new things, or not to go to the gym because we want to avoid that challenge. When, in reality, if we choose that challenge it can help us in other areas of our lives.
Let’s be honest, it doesn’t feel good to be unhappy or unsatisfied in our bodies. Living with that dissatisfaction is HARD. This unhappiness might look different for everyone, and I’ve definitely experienced my own version of this. Years ago, there were nights when I’d lay on the couch and cry because I was gaining weight and didn’t know what to do about it. And in the same breath, I remember saying I didn’t want to join a new gym because I didn’t want to work hard. Talk about counterintuitive!
When I finally did decide to try the new gym, I fell in love with it and found that doing so actually filled the void of what competitive swimming had given me through my college years. It was after that, and after understanding the benefits of this level of appropriate challenge, that I also started looking more closely at my food, my sleep, my water, and how I spent my time. Adjusting to changes around those things were challenging too, of course, but I now understood the value of putting effort into those aspects of my life and routine because they made me feel better, I was more satisfied with what my body looked like, felt like, and I was proud of what I could do. So, in this case, for me, the challenge of the health-related things was worth it to avoid the challenge of feeling bad about myself.
With all of this being said, I want to be clear that I’m not trying to oversimplify things either. I know it’s a privilege to even have a choice with some of these life challenges. I’m also not assuming that even if you wanted to choose a certain avenue that you have the tools and resources to be successful with it.
I am saying, however, that many of us CAN choose certain paths that may seem challenging, but can also alleviate or decrease the chances of experiencing certain other challenges. Equally, better is better… so even small steps in the direction of helpful challenges can be constructive.
What do you think? Am I making this all sound too simple? Is there an argument to be made for “choosing your hard”?? I’d love to hear your thoughts! Please share in the comments or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
As always, thank you for reading,