As I type this post, I am laid up sick in bed. I’ve had fever for a couple of days and have a cough that is really testing all that pranayama practice I’ve been doing this past year! It sucks. Of course this would happen just as I felt like I was finding my groove with my food and fitness … luckily, a big part of finding that groove had to do with finding the right mindset. As horrible as it is to be ill, I am not compounding that feeling by beating myself up for falling sick and not being able to get to the gym or yoga or jiu-jitsu. This is just a temporary situation. The only thing I need to focus on right now is rest and recovery.
That being said, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t think to myself – thank goodness this is happening now and not during the WLC. I did. However, I know that’s not the right attitude to have. If this had happened during the Whole Life Challenge, then it too would have been just a phase. Things happen. These minor hiccups are part of the process and need to be factored in to any long-term plan.
Travel. Injury. Social events. Family circumstances. Work obligations.
Anything can come up. The key is to not let those occasional situations disrupt your entire routine — and to do the best you can when they do arise.
For me, these interruptions challenge my mindset more than anything. Too often I have caught myself lingering in a negative headspace when things don’t go according to plan. ‘I should have known better.’ ‘Why aren’t I more disciplined?’ ‘I’m such a slacker.’ ‘I’m never going to get to where I need to be.’ ‘All these disruptions are ruining my attempts at being perfect.’
It’s just a 7 letter word, like healthy, curious, loveable, excited, present …
However, it seems to carry a lot of weight – but in all actuality, it carries the exact amount of weight that we choose to place on it.
Perfect isn’t a static measurement or description.
Today, as I lay here in bed, I know I don’t have the energy to really do anything. Things that I can focus on: sleep, hydration, meditation. Is it ok that I don’t get out of bed today? Given that I’m running a fever, coughing, and sniffling – yes! It’s absolutely ok. What would my measurement of ‘perfect’ be today? Perfect today = getting through the day without devouring the bag of Doritos that has been calling my name since early this morning!!
stuck sick in bed … but still have work to do
So you see, you get to decide what perfect looks like for you. The range of perfect is totally scalable depending on your circumstances and your objectives. [Check out my post, Who’s Keeping Score for more.]
When it comes to the Whole Life Challenge, instead of focusing on ‘perfect’ scores, think about perfect effort. Whatever you decide to do (or decide not to do) be 100% mindful and committed. Understand that it is not one day of inactivity or bad eating or bad sleep that will set you back. If you continue the pattern, then yes, it will catch up to you. However, if you take start to change your choices immediately, then you already flip the script. You start bringing things back under your control and working in your favor. Don’t worry about how big or small those steps are — they all add up.
Keep working at being mindful of your choices. Do the best you can. Put in perfect effort and don’t get caught up in numbers. Always keep your goal in mind and know that if you want to achieve something, you will have to put in the work. You may have to enter a score for each day of the challenge, but in the end, you know the true value of those points.
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