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Coaching Corner: How to Stop Making Excuses

At Hilton Head Health weight loss resort and wellness retreat, we focus on helping you lose weight and live a healthy lifestyle through a personalized process tailored to your needs. This process includes fitness classes, nutrition classes and education and forming a mind body connection with one’s self, and varies from person to person.. However, one common denominator that many people share and need to overcome is making excuses. We aim to teach you how to stop making excuses and live your healthiest life today. So how do you get started?

Let’s break the process down and look at the Appreciative Inquiry

Appreciative Inquiry Definition: A technique that puts focus on the positive aspects of our lives in order to give leverage over or to correct the negative ones. It’s the opposite of ‘problem-solving; which starts with the negative.

Appreciative Inquiry Purpose: When approaching a problem with a positive mindset, you become more open-minded and willing to try new ideas and suggestions. When approaching a problem with a negative mindset, you become more-narrow minded and more likely to shut out new ideas and suggestions (making excuses).

Too often we invest our time and energy into analyzing the things we can’t do and making excuses. We spend our time looking back at what went wrong and overanalyze our failures. This process is the fertile breeding ground where excuses are born; these excuses hinder our ability to reach our weight loss and wellness goals.

How do you feel about yourself when the theme of your vocabulary is CAN’T? How has that word helped you on your journey to success thus far?

Maybe there are things right now that you simply cannot do but wish you could. Perhaps you have dreams of being the healthiest, best, happiest, most successful version of you that you can possibly be, but you believe that you are being held back due to:

    • Your time
    • Your genetics
    • Your job
    • Your finances
    • Your family
    • Your social network
    • Your physical limitations
    • Your injuries
    • Your illness
    • Etc…

The reality is, yes, these are indeed real variables, and some of them will never change. However, the root of the problem never lies in what these variables are, but rather, how you approach them. The above variables only become excuses when you decide in your mind that they are. It’s not what you say that counts, it’s how you say it. Words are vehicles that drive your beliefs. Why not chose the most effective vehicle that leads to victory?

The above list could be a list of excuses… OR… it could simply be a list of variables. Just by its very nature, an excuse will never be a vehicle to success. When embarking on a journey where success is important to you, do yourself a favor. Stop making excuses! Simply make yourself aware of the variables.

However, before you even approach these variables, practice the technique of Appreciative Inquiry (AI). AI can be broken down into 5 parts: Define, Discover, Dream, Design and Deliver.

Define: Define the topic that’s important to you. (Ex: Healthy Lifestyle, Weight Loss, Wellness)

Discover: Discuss what the best of the best would look like, sound like and feel like. (Ex: Good balance between social life, work life, fitness, healthy meals, family time, alone time, hobbies). Remember to be as specific as possible! (Ex: Fitness: Walking at least 10,000 steps every day and having 6 meals/day. Breakfast lunch and dinner with a metabo-meal between each one. I have hobbies that I enjoy and I get to spend quality time with my family. A life that looks like Bob Wright’s life.)  

 Dream: Imagine the possibilities of the ideal. Ask yourself questions like:

    • What does my ideal-self look like?
    • What lifestyle is my ideal-self living?
    • What does my ideal-self feel like?

Design: Imagine the possibilities of the realistic. Think about a time when you really felt like, “I CAN”. Ask yourself questions like:

    • How have I been successful in the past?
    • What am I doing well now?
    • What qualities do I have that can help me be successful?
    • What lifestyle would or could I ideally and realistically live in the future?
    • What small goals can I set right now to lead me in the right direction?
    • What variables do I need to take into consideration?
    • How can I overcome these variables?

Deliver: Follow through with the actions from the small goals you created. (Ex: I see my ideal-self walking 10,000 steps/day, 7 days/week. Right now I realistically see myself walking 10,000 steps/day, 3 days/week and that is what I am doing.)

By following these steps, we hope it puts you one step closer to stop making excuses and living your healthiest life today!