“With the limited time we have you can’t be and do everything”

“The least focused people I know aren’t those that are uninspired. The least focused people I know are those that are inspired too easily.

If every new piece of information makes you change direction you’ll never make real progress – with the limited time we have you can’t be and do everything.

The most focused people I know are those that are able to let inspiration come and go.”

Steven Barlett, Founder of Social Chain

I saw this on Linkedin recently and immediately thought this is such a great piece of advice.

Of course it relates to business, I know a lot of PTs read my blog and I know how tempting it can be to want to jump on every trend, be involved in every ‘next big thing’ and I think Social Media makes it harder to resist that urge. The downside to trying to be involved in everything is that you can end up spreading yourself too thin. Instead of doing one thing well you can end up jus doing lots of things ineffectively, confusing your client base and moving further away from your niche. It does take self control to get over that FOMO and not worry that you might be missing out, but focusing on one really good idea and not getting distracted to the detriment of that needs to be balanced with knowing when a good opportunity comes along.

Beyond business this sentiment is exactly what many people trying to find the perfect diet or fitness regime for them need to remember.

How often do you read about the current new training craze, see a new diet or new ‘rule’ that people claim has transformed them (think Peter Kay ‘I lost fifteen stone in A DAY’) and been tempted? Because right now you don’t feel great and really want to feel more in control. I think honestly, even those of us who KNOW these things are fads sometimes feel that little bit of temptation on a low confidence day where you feel like you just need to do something drastic and logic has to compete with pure blind wishful thinking. When that moment passes of course you know that the calorie tracking and sensible plan that’s bringing steady results is what you should stick with, but the advertising on that shake is appealing or the image of that fitness transformation is enticing. Sticking with something when new things come along is tough, but is what will provide better results than constantly jumping from programme to programme, PT to PT, gym to gym.

Equally another thing people in fitness are guilty of is trying to be EVERYTHING. Super lean, whilst lifting really heavy and training for a marathon and the Crossfit Open and attending twenty five classes a week whilst training to be a Yoga instructor and maintaining three full time jobs. Now there’s a few super human people out there who can probably do all this and still have time to knit hats for orphans but for most of us we are literally setting ourselves up to feel like utter failures by taking on too many things. Again the key here is accepting we can’t jump on every bandwagon. Sometimes you’ll see people posting about an achievement you may love to emulate one day but right now it’s not practical, or something you really admire but really know you don’t desire enough to commit to what would be required. That’s ok – even if you are a success in you field you don’t have to be able to do everything. The saying about Jack of all Trades, Master of None and all that. Most people who are a success in their field are a success in their field are so precisely because they have specialised in a specific area.

“With the limited time we have you can’t be and do everything

Pick what you want, work out the best way for you to achieve that and focus on that thing until you have, then you can move onto the next goal with confidence.

How To Get Fit

How do you get started with a fitness regime? How do I get back into a routine when I’ve fallen out of mine? Lockdown one and two (at what point did we start numbering them because it’s a standard thing now isn’t it?) have, for a lot of us, thrown our training and nutrition into a bit of a tailspin.

So what do you do if this is the case? Whether you are looking to get started or a seasoned gym goer in a funk there’s one key strategy to get going.

Do one thing.

Whilst we often state our lack of doing things is down to a lack of motivation, in actual fact motivation is more a case of momentum. We tend to find motivation from doing something and using that as a stepping stone to do more. The more we do the more motivated we feel.

So when we want to get started with improving our fitness or nutrition making one small change is the best way of getting started.

This could mean doing one short workout (10 minutes), going for a walk, starting to track our calories, committing to drinking more water each day. Once we start to feel the benefits of this it becomes easier to consider adding additional things into our routine.

On top of create an increased sense of motivation, doing one small thing at a time can also make building a fitness regime feel more achievable.

This goes against most of our natural instincts. We tend to have a desire to be perfect, the idea that if we don’t do everything perfectly is there any point of doing it at all is prevalent (hence why so many diets start on Monday, and when people have one slip they wait to start again the following Monday). We aren’t perfect though. Not even those people that really seem to have it all together (you know those people who seem to know how to adult), so we are far more likely to feel successful if we work on our goals in small chunks.

So as you start this week, if you are wanting to make a change to your fitness or nutrition, think about trying to improve one small thing and nothing more than that.