Ways to Stop Making Excuses

We know it, we know it. Your dog ate your homework and you couldn’t make an appointment for your annual checkup.

We all make excuses. And it’s true that many of us are busy, tired and make our excuse here, and these excuses make it easy to neglect essential self-care like exercise and annual checkups.

Read: 6 tips for true self-care >>

But there are steps you can take to help stop making excuses and achieve your health and fitness goals. Yvonne Thomas, Ph.D., a Los Angeles-based psychologist who specializes in life transitions, motivation, and self-esteem, said the key is to start with something small that you know you can do. “If you want to eat more vegetables, start with a Brussels sprout,” he said. “Small steps still lead to the end result, which we hope will be a success.”

Shelly-Ann Collins Rawle, Ph.D.psychologist at boutique therapy practice The Black Girl Doctor, said that a combination of practice strategies (goal setting, time management, etc.) and cognitive-behavioral The approaches can help change negative attitudes and perceptions.

Here are tips to overcome some common excuses and achieve success when it comes to your health and fitness goals.

1. “I don’t have time to exercise.”

“The perception of not having enough time is a major barrier to exercise and health goals,” said Collins Rawle.

The good news is that you don’t need much time to benefit from exercise. You may benefit from short bursts of exercise, sometimes called exercise snacks. “Instead of thinking it has to be an hour or two, start small. Decide to do 20 minutes. [If you] I can’t go to the gym [try] sit-ups or planks at home.”

Thomas said to include exercise in your schedule like you would your lunch break at work. And write it down. “People are very good at excuses. So when you see it in front of you, you are more responsible. Put it on your phone or place it in multiple places. Even a cardboard. “This is my commitment to myself from now on or this year.”

Read: It’s snack (exercise) time! >>

2. “It hasn’t worked in the past. “It won’t work now.”

When it comes to exercise, Collins Rawle said this excuse can be due to a lack of motivation or negative attitudes towards physical activity. Find out what exactly didn’t work last time and decide what needs to change to make it work this time. “The ‘glass is half empty’ is a deficit mentality and is based on assumptions that may not be relevant now. “If you believe in your abilities, then we can start reframing ourselves towards a more positive mindset as in ‘it might work this time.’”

Thomas noted that realistic goals are important when making a change in your lifestyle. “Be logical: don’t opt ​​for all or nothing. If one day you don’t eat well, who cares? The next day, start again. And try to chain a couple of days in a row. Even if you make a mistake, start again.”

3. “I don’t like my healthcare provider.”

Thomas recommended starting by asking yourself why you don’t like your healthcare provider (HCP). And be specific: Is your healthcare professional dismissive of him? Rude? Unavailable? Next, write down the professional and personal characteristics you want in a healthcare professional. “Knowing your priorities can help you avoid the same problems with new doctors.”

Read: 5 Steps to Follow When Your Healthcare Provider Won’t Listen to You >>

Seek recommendations from people you trust and let them know your priorities. “What works for one person may not work for another, but at least you’re taking the step to reach out and knowing that the location is a good fit for that person can help motivate you to call and make the appointment.”

If you are unable to change offices, your current healthcare provider may be willing to offer you a referral to another healthcare provider in the same office who may be a better fit for you.

4. “I’m too out of shape to join a gym or workout class.”

You are never too out of shape to start getting in shape. You can start with what you can handle and build up until you can do more. Collins Rawle said you should focus on joining a class or gym as part of your personal journey of improvement and fitness ease with beginner classes and simple machines at the gym. Consider alternative workout options that may also pique your interest, such as a hip hop dance class.

5. “I haven’t been in a long time, I’m ashamed.”

Unfortunately, the longer you put something off, the harder it will be to do it. Thomas told him to change the excuse. Ask yourself how you will feel if you don’t go. Consider finding a psychologist who understands you and can help you get on the right path.

And remember to give yourself a little grace. “Be empathetic and compassionate with yourself as you would be with a friend, family member or colleague,” Thomas said. “Don’t let your defenses scare you, control you or deceive you: excuses come from defenses. You don’t know how smart your defenses can be. Little by little you will be able to face fear and achieve change.”

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