Published on November 7, 2020
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One statement I hear too often from people is “I don’t have time for that” . . . in regards to certain tasks—a.k.a. work—that must be done in order to work with me to lose weight, things like planning ahead, preparing in advance, using portion control, and so much more.
How often do any of us say “I don’t have time for that”? In reality, it is almost always not really a time issue. It’s a priority issue. What we really mean to say is “that” is not a priority to me.
We are all creatures of habit. If you took out a sheet of paper and wrote down every one of your habits, you would likely fill a page with your repetitive actions.
Most of our lives are fairly predictable. We generally get up about the same time and then we drink coffee or eat breakfast in a routine. We leave our house about the same time for work or to begin our daily activities. We eat dinner about the same time, spend our evenings in a typical pattern and then go to bed around the same time each night.
For the most part, we live a life of predictability . . . but I believe that’s a good thing. Predictability leads to stability, and stability internally can lead to accomplishing great things externally.
Is your life full? Do you feel like you’re busting at the seams with your daily and weekly life? If someone asks you to help out for a few hours, do you ever respond, “I don’t have time for that?” Probably not.
The truth is that we do have time for “that.” Bottom line, we have time for what we want to have time for.
Time is one constant in each of our lives. It does not discriminate or favor any one person over another. It doesn’t matter the color of your skin, your faith, your income, where in the world you live, or your size. We all have the same 24 hours to spend every day.
It is like every one of us has the same size suitcase, yet we each pack it differently. Your suitcase starts full, and if you want to pack warmer clothes and a few extra pair of shoes, you need to take out several pair of shorts and some short sleeve shirts.
Expanding on the suitcase analogy, you have space for what you want to have space for in your suitcase, but some things are more important to pack than others. If I was going on a trip, I would pack clean underwear and my contac lenses. From there, my packing would depend on what my priorities are for the journey ahead. Whether I pack jeans and sweater tops and a heavy jacket, or shorts and tank-tops and bathing suits would depend on what is important on my trip. I would strategically choose what I put in my suitcase.
Right or wrong, good or bad, what is in my suitcase ultimately is my responsibility and on my own shoulders.
. . . and so it is with our lives. If we want to get involved in a new activity such as joining a local civic club, getting active in church or joining a gym and working out with a trainer a couple times a week, we must take something out of our suitcase to make room for the new activity and the time it takes. Removing items from our suitcase and replacing them with other items reveals our priorities. In our daily lives we can identify our priorities by how we spend our time.
We feel our lives are “full,” then a relative dies suddenly and amazingly we have time to stop our routine and to travel and be with family in time of mourning. If we can make time for a crisis, we can make time for a “non crisis” if we really want to.
All this being said, I try to avoid saying “I don’t have time for that” because bottom line, I actually do have time. What I try to say is “that is not something I am able to make time for.” It is a softer way of saying “that is not a priority in my life” or “that is not more important in my life than what I am spending time on now.”
My challenge to you today is to be honest with yourself. Recognize that you do have time for what you want to have time for. Recognize that your “I don’t have time for that” excuse is really a way of turning down an opportunity by saying “that is not something I choose to make a priority” in my life.
You have 24 hours to spend each day. Take out sleeping time, meal time, and “getting ready for your day” time and what you are left with will show what is important in your life. It may or may not line up with what you believe are your priorities.
Don’t be afraid to change your routine to better meet your priorities or to keep flexible to be able to handle impromptu opportunities that are consistent with your priorities. Do you need to remove some items from your suitcase to make room for other items that are more important in your life? And, is one of those other items that should be more important in your life the fact that you are overweight and unhappy and need to do something about it?
Every week, I write a new blog and a new pod cast script; I create 2-3 social media posts per day to schedule for the following business week, and that includes finding great recipes and breaking them down into serving sizes and food groups so I can post a new one every week; and there’s a whole lot more that goes into running my business on a weekly basis. I do this not because I have time to do them, but because I make them a priority in my life. It’s important for my business and for my clients.
When you make the “I don’t have time for that” excuse, it means that you lack passion, focus, discipline, and direction; it suggests that your priorities are out of sorts; and it definitely indicates that you just don’t value your time or just don’t want to take the time to achieve your desired outcomes. And, therefore, that must mean your desired outcome is status quo . . . because, after all, if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten!
If you really want to live a slim and healthy life, you have to make the time to do the things necessary in order to lose weight, or . . .
. . . spend the time being fat!
It’s as simple as that.
The choice is yours.