Living In Hope Will Kill You
She came to me looking to lose weight, tone up, feel better about herself.
“I can’t stand looking in the mirror”, she said. “I never go out. I can’t wear anything I want to wear. Look at my arms”
When I asked her what she wanted to achieve she told me she hoped to lose at least 15 kilos. Possibly 20, but she’d see how she went with the 15 first.
It reminded me of the way I used to set my money goals –
“I want to be able to pay off my cards by the end of next month”
“Hopefully I can increase my income by 20% in the next 90 days”
“After I finish paying this off I don’t think I’ll have any new big expenses to worry about”
– and so I knew I couldn’t take her on as a client, not unless she was willing to understand that it was nothing but her own weak hopes that had landed her here in the first place. Not unless she was willing to make a definite stand about what she wanted.
hope will get you nowhere. In fact, it will kill you.
It will allow you to get excited, to visualize and fantasize. It will seduce you with promises of what could happen for you. Maybe. If and when everything comes together as it should.
And it will afford you just enough progress that you keep hanging on. That you find new hope, for another future success which you will inevitably also turn away from or decide you didn’t really want. You know, when it doesn’t happen as you hoped it would.
Hope will keep you motivated for just long enough for you to think you’re getting somewhere, and then it will dash your dreams against the rocks of a busy and distracted life.
A life where the things that must get done, are done. And where the things you hope for, perhaps even long for, become distant dreams of a life you wished you had the courage to truly chase after.
That weight you hope to lose? The jeans you want to fit back into? The business idea you’ll get around to one day? The ultimate fantasy lifestyle of you doing things on your terms each day, naturally motivated and energized from within and loving every bit of it?
It will happen for you as soon as you stop living on hope and a prayer.
you want to get in shape? change your life? here’s what you do.
State your goal. Make it specific, exact. Challenging and a little scary but reasonable based on what you know a truly motivated and determined person could achieve. Write it down. Decide the exact date when it will happen. Publicize it to your friends, family, on Facebook or to me. Commit. Then determine the next action. Make space for it to happen. Do it. Repeat these last three until the job is done. Reward yourself. And decide the next goal.
About taking action –
Taking action has to be a clear thing you will definitely do.
Clear is not you will workout if you have time. Clear is not you hope to get to the gym or get out for a walk. Nor is it that you want to eat really well, prepare your meals in advance.
- I will do 4 workouts this week. (Then you schedule them in your diary. Then you do them no matter what, unless the earth literally opens up and swallows you on your way)
- I will eat protein with good fat for breakfast a least 5 times this week (And you write down what you will have. You put it aside ready to go the night before)
- I will ask 20 people if they would like to be a trial customer of my new business or service (And you list their names. Schedule when to contact them. Write a little something about your offer)
- I will write 2 blog posts that I can use when I launch my new business (And you bullet point the 10 things you’ll mention in each)
- I will ask this person for help about this thing. (And you schedule the call)
what if you fail?
If you find you don’t commit to your goals, that you can’t pull them off, that things come up?
Then you’re still living in hope. Or, the goal does not really matter to you; it’s not something that you’ve determined must happen above all else. Sometimes, that’s okay. Sometimes, you can quit your goals or realize something matters more.
Just don’t lie to yourself about it if you are doing this. Be real about what you want and about whether you’re wussing out when you need to push through.
And push you should. If something maters to you truly, madly, deeply, if you want it more than anything and it can change your life then push. Push some more. Fight to make your dreams happen. Never ever ever quit. Do what it takes. Do it again. Do it until you nearly breakdown in tears and then until you actually breakdown but with the realization that you have actually come so close to your dreams that you can taste them.
And that right now when most people freak out and go back to safety you’re going to harden up even more. Push even more. Fight even dirtier to beat the daily grind.
We talked about goals, about what it really takes to change your body or your life, about the difference between people who want and people who do.
She went away and I didn’t see her again for a month.
When I did, it was like talking to a new person.
“This is happening”, she said.
“I’m going to lose 20 kilos this year. 5 of it by the end of next month. When I do, I’m going to go away for a night to Sydney all by myself, as a reward”
When I asked her how often she could come, what changes she was going to make at home, she was clear. Precise. And ready to go.
Instead of letting hope kill her, she’d decided to kill it first. It reminded me of the money goals I now set. And I smiled, because I knew she couldn’t fail.
Don’t forget –
Life is Now. Press Play.