Sunday, December 14, 2014
Is It Time You Changed Your Life?
I recently celebrated the coming of the Jewish New Year – Rosh Hashanah – though I’m not a deeply religious person. I was born and raised Jewish but I don’t keep Kosher, attend services often, or really follow many of the daily rituals of the ancient faith. But I identify as being Jewish and it's part of my culture. Anyway, enough about religion!
The holiday gave me a bit of a fresh start, an excuse to rally around making changes in my life. We often wait for a birthday, a holiday, or a major event to launch us into self-help mode. But it shouldn’t be that we rely on an external boost or a day on the calendar to transform our lives into what we’d always hope they would be.
My dad is turning 75 a few months ago and the week before that I was at a party where my aunt and uncle celebrated 60 years of marriage. The end game is longevity at life and at doing the things that matter most to us. But also quality of life must join hands with longevity, for having a lot of something doesn’t mean anything unless that something has value.
I think many of us see ourselves as how we were or how we hope to be, but rarely do we take an honest stock of who we are today and then seek to take real steps towards improving major aspects of ourselves.
I recently have looked into my mirror – prior to the Jewish New Year in September– and determined I need to lose weight, get healthier, and most importantly, start taking control of and responsibility for my body. It’s going well. I increased my level of exercise – even joined a gym – and have managed to keep half the junk I used to eat off of my plate. I’m not tired from moving my body nor starving from having portion control. It can be done. Of course, I’m in the honeymoon phase, where people say you look good and you get a high from seeing the scale shrink. But I also feel like there’s hope to live a balanced life. It’s a priority for me.
But, as we all know, there are competing priorities that require attention, focus, resources, time, money, and commitment and brain power – relationships, career, money, and parenting to name a few. The key is to find a balance where you excel at something but not at the price of failing at something.
I’ve read enough self-help books to know that one improves when they have awareness of a problem, a desire to address it, the ability to fix it, and the commitment to actually make improvements. But I also know that life is stressful, full of surprises, and often challenging.
As I now look to improve other areas of my life, I don’t want to then see my fitness commitment suffer. I’d rather see the opposite happen – that my physical regeneration inspires me to improve other facets of my life and to use it as a model for change with other things.
I know that change can happen – with great effort and honesty and commitment. I also know that change is not permanent – things can change again and again, so one must always look to both seek what they want while preserving what they have and look to shed what’s no longer needed.
Of course one can look to a date on the calendar to inspire reflection and motivation to change, but no need to wait for January 1 or a birthday. Look today at what you can change now. Are you ready to take a step towards a new you?
To those struggling with something in their life, I feel for you. It’s not easy to make up a deficit or to mend broken bridges or recover from lost opportunities. But the moment you commit to change you will have changed. Act as if you are already where you want to be. You’ll get there one step at a time.
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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Media Connect, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2014