When you see or hear the word “creep” what comes to mind? Is it a repulsive guy or unpleasant gal that just makes you feel weird every time you see them? Yep, been there. Is it the accumulation of “treasures” that begin to slowly take over your space? If you have seen the show Hoarders you’ll know this is a serious issue. Speaking of Hoarders one guy had over 2500 free-roaming rats in his house. Fun times. But for me, creep is about letting past bad habits enter back into your life.
It happens to a lot of people that have lost weight, stopped drinking, smoking, you name it. You do really great for several years but then you start allowing excuses and bad choices to erode all of the positive changes that you have made to get to a healthier point in your life. Look at most of the Biggest Loser contestants. As soon as they leave the Biggest Loser ranch they slowly return to their old routines and the weight begins to pile on. Becoming a healthy role-model can add pressure to individuals that are not setup to handle it. I am constantly worried that if I put on weight that I will disappoint myself, my family and others that have been inspired by my weight loss and story.
So what steps can you take to push back the creep?
First you need to realize what your creep is. I have identified 3 areas that are mine. Certain foods like chips and salsa (isn’t every day a good reason to celebrate Cinco de Mayo?), chocolate bridge mix, and overeating – even when it’s healthy. Not exercising enough or not pushing myself hard enough when I exercise is another one. I have always said that you can’t out exercise a bad diet and you definitely can’t setting on your couch watching TV with a bag of chips (note to self). My last creep is not getting enough sleep. Going to bed at a consistent time and getting at least 8 hours of rest each night has been critical for my overall health. These are areas that I need to work on. I will never see the results I am after without keeping these in check.
Secondly and more importantly you need to identify what is causing you to not make your health a priority. For me I get so busy that I start to stress out. It doesn’t help that I accept more job responsibilities regardless of how busy I am. As the work piles on I start to shut down. My diet, sleep, exercising, and time with family suffers because of it. So how do I combat this? I get organized. I make a list and just start going through it. I am not a superhuman so I do what I can. I also start listening to the little voice inside my head that gives me good advice. Saying “No, I don’t have the time to do that for you” in some cases is just as valuable as saying “Yes”. Regardless if it’s work, friends or family.
Here are a few other ways that you can fight creep in your life:
- One item at a time. If you have several areas that you need to fix, focus on one, and then move on to the others as you accomplish them. By getting one item accomplished it might get the ball rolling to easily knock out the rest.
- Write it down. Write your goals, plans, etcetera on Facebook, a diary, smartphone, or posted on your mirror. Writing it down can motivate yourself to stick with it. Getting friends involved can be extremely helpful in moving forward.
- Get it out. If it’s food, get it out of the house and replace it with healthier options.
- Be honest with yourself. I have another little voice that tells me lies. “Go ahead, you can have that chocolate. You will work it off later.” But when later comes I am tired and unmotivated (probably from the excess sugar in my system). Knowing how to handle these situations when they come up is important. How you respond determines whether the problem areas continue to hang around or whether you push them further away.
- Be consistent. Once you get rid of the things that keep you from being your healthiest don’t let anything slide. Be committed to whatever it is that keeps you motivated to stay healthy.
So what is your creep? …and what are your plans to push it away? Let me know in the comments section below.
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