We find ourselves in a time when the health of our population continues to diminish even though the life expectancy continues to lengthen. This translates (for many) into a prolonged “life sentence” of disease, dysfunction and depression. To reverse this direction, we need to discover real motivation within ourselves. We need to understand and accept new standards of living and commit ourselves to these new standards to achieve tangible outcomes including improved health, function and quality living.
To achieve these standards we can no longer use concepts as we have in the past that have ultimately failed to create LONG TERM CHANGES. One such failing concept to consider is the word “TRYING” and the way we apply it. For example:
“I WILL “TRY” TO DRINK MORE WATER EACH DAY!”
When a person believes they’re ready to make a real commitment to improving their health, and initiates the process with “TRYING” TO DRINK MORE WATER, there is a high probability this person will FAIL. The act of drinking water doesn’t really require TRYING! If a person can’t commit themselves to filling a glass with water and drinking it, they are unlikely able to commit to more challenging physical and mental tasks required to achieving their objectives. Some of the most common EXCUSES for “trying” and failing include:
I really don’t like it
I was too busy
Compare the use of the word “TRYING” in the previous paragraph with the following example: “I was “TRYING“ to increase my exercise by 5 minutes, but was only able to increase it by 2 minutes.” You will notice INTENTION produced a POSITIVE outcome even though the person was unable to achieve their goal. This is NOT FAILURE! This is PROGRESS; a “step forward” on their journey to ultimate success.
The word “TRYING” implies effort. It should NOT BE USED to provide justification for the personal choice to fail. Instead, it should describe a mental and/or physical effort that typically exceeds an individual’s normal capability.
The previous example described a physical limitation while exercising that still achieved progress. This principle applies to MENTAL “TRYING” as well. EXAMPLE: “I was “TRYING“ to stay focused on my mantra during my 10 minutes of meditation, but kept noticing I was easily distracted and drifting off.” A person TRULY “TRYING” (in this example) may have “failed to stay focused on their mantra, but would have achieved a level of SUCCESS by COMPLETING their 10 minutes of meditation rather than “giving up” and quitting.
We need to begin viewing the word “TRYING” from this new perspective. We can no longer use it to create unfounded excuses for failure.
“I WILL “TRY” TO EAT VEGETABLES EACH DAY!”
Placing vegetables in one’s mouth shouldn’t require “TRYING!” If a person doesn’t like vegetables, it should be viewed as a less than pleasurable experience for the palate and a more than pleasurable experience for the brain knowing that it contributes to the prevention of diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, obesity, etc… If we are UNWILLING to let our cognitive thinking (higher rational thinking) AND emotional thinking work together in a healthy balance to direct our decision making, we will continue to return to patterns of behavior that satisfy SHORT TERM NEEDS at the expense of LONG TERM GOALS.
The next time you decide to make the commitment to improving your health and quality of life, make certain your INTENTION TO “TRY” is based on the concept of mental and physical FORWARD PROGRESS, even if the attempt only produces partial results. Learning from these experiences and modifying future attempts ultimately leads to LONG TERM SUCCESS.
Those who continue to insist upon using the word “TRYING” to justify CHOSEN FAILURES (ex. not drinking water or not eating vegetables) when a physical and/or mental limitation truly isn’t present, will likely remain frustrated as they continue to follow a path of discontent.
The next time you decide to “TRY,” will INTENT OR EXCUSE determine your outcome?