Process Over Outcome (Becoming a “Healthy Thinker” Trait #1)
To become a “healthy thinker” you must choose Process Over Outcome. You must put more emphasis on the process of becoming healthy, and less emphasis on the outcome.
In today’s society we are incredibly outcome driven. We hear about fast and easy ways to make money. We are led to believe that you you can drop 25 pounds in a month. We discuss our goals in life, and in health, and we only talk about the outcome. I want to be a millionaire. I want to weigh 150 pounds. We set goals based on the outcome. But, how do we reach our goals? What do we actually have to do to reach our goals? What do we have to give up to reach our goals? Have we made any lifestyle changes that will allow us to maintain our goals?
Goals are great. Goals keep us headed in the right direction. But, without process goals, it is nearly impossible to reach, much less maintain our outcome goals. We have to figure out the process that will allow us to reach our goals, and maintain them. We have to be able to work the process into our daily lives. Weight loss is the greatest example of this vicious cycle. We set a goal. We do anything (including the latest crazy fad diet) to reach that goal. Sometimes we reach the goal. We suffer through the crazy diet. We feel like crap because we are missing nutrients that our bodies need. We don’t sleep well. But, we have reached the goal. Now what? We haven’t made any lifestyle changes. We certainly haven’t enjoyed the process. Boom, we start gaining the weight right back. And that’s if you actually reach your goal! More times that not we do not reach our goal. We get frustrated by the lack of results. “I am eating less and exercising, but I’m only losing one pound a week.” “This sucks!” “I have to lose 25 pounds and I hate every minute of this this!”
What if we stop worrying so much about the outcome and start enjoying the process? What if we start exercising and eating healthier because we will feel better? We do it because we can, not because we have to? We do it for the daily satisfaction of doing something good for ourselves? It’s more of a mental shift than it is physical. Once you start to change your attitude, your body will follow. Do it because you want to feel better about yourself, not because of what anyone else thinks.
Now that we have the right mental approach, we must set our goals based on the process- What can I work into my schedule tomorrow that will get me one step closer to my outcome goal? Is this something that I can make a part of my life? When I reach this goal tomorrow I will pat myself on the back. I will know that I did something healthy for myself. What are my process goals for the week? What can I do this week that will get me closer to my outcome goal? Are these process goals realistic with what I have going on this week? Can I maintain these goals for the long term?
Now obviously time isn’t going to appear out of nowhere. Your kids, and your job are still going to be there tomorrow. Tomorrow is still only going to last 24 hours. I wish I could give you 2 free hours tomorrow, but I can’t. So let’s not b.s. ourselves. This is going to take some work. You are going to have to make some changes to work health into your everyday process. But, I know you can do it!
Enjoy the process and you will be one step closer to becoming a “Healthy thinker.”