Going all in

I am an all or nothing kind of person. Are you?

By this I mean I am 100% committed to something or it is not even a blip on my radar. Whether it is fitness, a hobby, relationships, or a project, it has my all encompassing, total being, zeroed in attention or else I could care less about it.

Having this kind of mentality has been rewarding and unbelievably painful.

Let’s take this approach to health and fitness. If health and fitness are the thing in the moment that I am focusing on, then I will be at the gym everyday of the week, trying to sneak in workouts after work before I go home. I am inputing every single thing that goes into my body (even water) and tracking calories consumed versus calories burned. I am measuring my weight every morning and even taking measurements of my own body. Then something happens, a new shiny thing comes along or I lose motivation and I eat a fast food meal, then ice cream at night. Before you know it I have deviated heavily from my fitness course.

Let’s approach this from a relationship standpoint (if you have been a friend of mine now or in the past, I do apologize for this point). If there is a friendship that I care about deeply developing, I schedule morning coffee so we can converse about struggles and victories, I make FaceTime calls throughout the week periodically to check up on you to see how you are doing, I send encouraging text messages to uplift you throughout the day. I am all into you…and then it happens. Either a greater priority, time constraints, or just life gets in the way, and you probably don’t hear from me for months. I apologize, really!

Do these analogies resonate with you as person? Do you find yourself completely chasing after something or someone only for the intensity of that pursuit to fizzle over time? I have a few thoughts that might help you on this matter.

Commitment is more than emotions — Sometimes we make a commitment to something as a result of a feeling a certain way about it. Maybe you are committed to something out of guilt (been there done that). Sometimes we commit to something out of a need that somebody has, and we think we are well-equipped to meet that need. But true commitment outlast the temporary emotion felt when we first commit to that cause. Commitment is a choice that we make that should outlast any obstacle we might face.

Learn to say no — Some people in this world are naturally bent on pleasing others and can often go to great lengths just to make other people happy. However there are often times when we need to revert back to the first words we learned as a child growing up and that is, no. When you say no to the things that really don’t align with your priorities in life, it leaves room for the best things. This truly is the battle we face, not between the good and the bad, but the good and the best things.

Have a strong “why” — Before you commit and double down on something, take a second to ask yourself, “Why am I committing to this?” If the answer to that question is strong enough and you can align with why you are doing what you are doing, it will help clarify your priorities up front as well as continue to guide you when you are questioning your loyalty.

Remember life is short — Ultimately our life is made up of a series of decisions we make. When I get to the end of my life, I want to come to it having made the best decisions I could have possibly made with the information I had at that moment in time. Remembering now the brevity of life can help us filter the decisions we make to ensure they are the best ones for us and those we love.