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Mindful Bytes: Failed Attempts

Updated: Jan 14, 2022

“We thought we failed every time we tried. We realize now those were stepping stones needed to achieve our goals.”

So journaling helps my journey. I usually have a few concepts I’m drafting at any given point in time. But when I read this quote from Jean Luc and Nick, it was pencils down on the rest of my thoughts.

I love that motto!!!! Yet another great thought from these two inspirations. I won’t ever stop calling my previous journeys ‘failed attempts’, because I need the accountability more than the positivity, but they’re absolutely not wasted attempts. At all.

What I find so profound in that brilliant tight statement is I don’t know anyone trying to rescue their health that can download a sustainable successful mindset on the first try. As Seinfeld says about break ups: They’re like tipping a Coke machine over. You can’t push it over on the first try. You gotta get it rocking back and forth a bunch of times before it goes. 😆😆😆

Changing habits and behaviours is initially really uncomfortable. It was for me. Some people deal with such guilt and loathing trying to improve their health. My biggest hurdle to overcome was the fact I absolutely love to eat, adore it truly. And while I can experience regret, my binging is completely guiltless. Honestly? I wasn’t interested in changing.

So when the discomfort of obesity finally pushed me to try and improve my health, I still wasn’t interested in tolerating much discomfort. Sure I’d start hardcore and have success, but as soon as life hit tough, that was all I needed to throw in the towel. It’s when I started to accumulate so many failed attempts that the frustration of failure came into focus. The feeling this could never change. And then you just accept it. When I started this leg of my health journey I was really scared for my health, but I was also pretty pissed that the food party was over.

But something clicked, and after literally a thousand attempts to get healthy (every Monday for 20 years, bare minimum), I finally looked at all the effort and disappointment and fear and discomfort from those attempts, and accepted a new fact: that it was time to try the really hard things. I looked at my greatest weaknesses and shortcomings as my first priority, not easing into change like the last thousand tries. Finally looking at the fundamental reasons I did things, not just eating less.

I needed to feel like every option was exhausted. Every trick. Every shortcut. Every cleanse. All of it was tried to the point where the only stuff left was true mindset heavy lifting.

And just as an aside, I’m going to say something semi-confrontational. I don’t know if I could have done this successfully in my 20s. I think age helps. Of course a 20 something CAN do this, no question, but I don’t know if the typical 20-something feels the tug of mortality quite like someone who’s obese and older. You accumulate a few scares in the hospital. And that eerie sensation when you feel your mobility deteriorating. It increases your sense of urgency in a unique way.

So because of Nick and Jean Luc’s genius thought, I’ve spent this week actually thankful for those thousand failures. They absolutely prepared me to succeed. I needed them. For this food addict, they made me accept things I really didn’t want to. And I couldn’t get here without them.

Maybe this is your successful attempt. Maybe it’s not. But don’t loathe the struggle. There’s purpose to it. It has value even if you can’t see it. Get what you can from these battles we all have. They’re hardening you for the one you’re eventually going to win.

And you can thank Jean Luc and Nick for that piece of hope. I’m certainly grateful for it.

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