When Is The Right Time To Start?
When is the ‘right time’ to make a change? Whether it’s beginning a new diet, an exercise regime, quitting a bad habit, spending more time with your family, writing a book or starting a new business, there will always be an excuse to put off starting.
“I’ll start my diet when the kids go back to school so that I can really concentrate on it”.
“I’m too busy at the moment to commit to a gym regime”.
“I’m too stressed right now to quit smoking”.
“When I lose weight, I’ll go for it and ask him out/book the holiday/change the way I dress”.
Sound familiar? In essence, these are all excuses we come up with that prevents us from changing or starting anything in life.
When it comes to making a change the first step is often the hardest, but it’s also the most important. This is especially true if what you want to start is making changes to a healthier lifestyle and lose unwanted weight. Every day you spend eating the wrong foods and not exercising you do further damage to your mind and body. Continuous bad eating habits and lack of exercise are detrimental for our health and wellbeing as we all know, but the other important thing we must remember is that bad habits become stronger the more we repeat the behaviour. The classic example is waiting until Monday to start a diet. The weekend before is often spent consuming thousands of unnecessary calories in preparation for the big change. However, this makes the problem worse because in fact excessive consumption of unhealthy foods can only leave you feeling tired, low and moody which can lead to lack of motivation to change things and get stuff done. Change doesn’t start on Monday, it starts now and it can be Saturday night!
Once you realize that there’s no such thing as the ‘right time’ you can begin to make meaningful progress. As Jordan Belfort once said, “The only thing standing between you and your goal is the bullshit story you keep telling yourself as to why you can’t achieve it. ” If you constantly make excuses as to why you can’t change your habits now you should take some time to consider why that is. Often, it’s because of a fear of failure. You want to wait until the timing is perfect to give yourself the best chance of achieving your aim. Instead of seeing obstacles as something to be overcome, you perceive them as insurmountable because you don’t believe in yourself.
To tackle this, you need to become more confident in your ability. Believe that you have the power to take on whatever life throws at you and that nothing will put you off from reaching your goal. Of course, you might stumble and have bad days but being able to pick yourself up and dust yourself off is an important part of the journey. It’s what shows true strength.
Another reason why you need to ditch the excuses is that by telling yourself that you can’t overcome a challenge you’re giving yourself permission not to even try. This type of negative thinking not only delays you starting, but it can affect you later when you finally do, and you come across an unforeseen problem. If your mindset is that you can’t handle things, then it’s unlikely that you will. On the other hand, if you begin when the timing isn’t perfect, you’ll be able to look back and say “I got through that, so I can definitely handle this”…and that is so empowering!
Life is unpredictable and there will never be a ‘right time’ to do anything. Even if, by some miracle, all factors align to make the beginning of your journey as easy as possible you’ll have to face a challenge at some point. By accepting that there will always be a reason not to try or a reason to quit, but that what matters is that you go ahead anyway, you’ll set yourself up to be able to cope with anything. So, if there’s a change you want to make, go ahead and start now!