Success is an awesome thing but everyone knows it can be elusive. If you’re not seeing any measurable amount of success with your efforts, you may need change. Are you seeing any success from one, two or three months (or years) ago? This needs to include more than your friends telling you they see improvement. This needs to include measurable success you can see. Have you lost weight? Inches? Are you somehow closer to your goal? If you’re not seeing success, even in the smallest measure, then change is probably what you need. Change and persistence often hold hands when you pursue almost any goal because you need both to succeed. Here are some things I’ve discovered on my journey.
Success takes time.
Some goals take longer to achieve than others and you need to honestly assess whether you’re being persistent enough or if you need to make a change somewhere. Weight loss is fairly easy to measure, while it’s happening. Plateaus, however, are another beast. When you realize you’re not losing anymore, you might settle into a routine and think, “Well, I’m doing okay. I’m not gaining and I’m still exercising every day. So that’s good.” But is it actually good? It isn’t if you have 10 or 15 more pounds to go and you want a homemade tummy tuck that rocks. It takes time and persistence to lose those last stubborn pounds.
Success requires change.
Change doesn’t always mean some kind of radical transformation. I’ve realized the value of persistence through small, but significant, changes. The first thing I changed this week was increasing my morning cardio from 66 minutes to 72 minutes. Yeah, it’s a long time and I get pooped but I’m doing it. I also removed everything white from my diet, which means no potatoes, pasta, bread or white rice. Dropped a pound and it hasn’t even been a whole week. Those changes are not extreme (or permanent) but they were enough to shake things up. Change things around before you give up.
Success needs perseverance.
It takes a truckload of persistence to move beyond a plateau because you have to pay attention to what is happening with your body. If you keep doing the same thing every week, you’ll never see change. It doesn’t matter if you can say, “I exercise an hour every day.” At some point, the question you must ask yourself is, “So what?” Persistence is more than repeating the same thing: you need to be proactive. This is where the persistence of change comes into play. Evaluate your situation and make adjustments if things aren’t where you want them to be. When things don’t go well, or you encounter some kind of failure, the key is to persevere, even when you don’t feel like it.
Success is for life.
Guess what? As you become stronger, fitter and better, your goals will change. Last year, I simply wanted to make it through Jillian Michael’s 30-day Shred without feeling like I was beat. Now, I want to master p90x’s Plyometrics routine as well as build me some shoulders and great abs. Because I’ve persisted, I know I can do it. As you reach goals, you’ll find you want to do more and be more just because you can. You have to reach those first goals in order to know you can achieve more. What matters is how much you’re willing to pursue your goal. Persist, knowing change complements many efforts.
What are you learning on your journey?