Today is Day 8 of my LifeWorkout Challenge. This first week has been a blast and, obviously, quite a challenge. Trying to tackle my life in terms of faith, family, finances, and fitness is a huge task. I don’t think I realized what it was going to be like to intentionally workout these areas. I had a nice video clip that I wanted to share with you yesterday, but my video editing software crashed on me so I have to switch gears. Another life lesson!
As I reflect on the process of LifeWorkout, or of life transformation, I have seen there are some steps that we all need to take in order to obtain the life that we desire. I have seen that there are seven steps that we can take regardless of whether we are talking about our family, faith, finances, or fitness. I used to think that there were different guiding principles for each area, but I am now starting to realize that they are all the same. Imagine four sprinklers that water four different areas of a lawn. On the surface, it may seem that they are all independent of each other. However, when you dig under the surface of the ground, you find that they are all connected by the same pipe system receiving water from the same source. That’s the way these principles work.
So, today, I want to share with you the first of the LifeWorkout Principles, or the 7 Steps to Workout Your Life;
Step #1: Face the Mirror!
How many of us like facing the mirror every day? In the morning, we are presented images of tired and crusty eyes, a lopsided bed head, and a steamed up mirror in response to our morning breath. Not always a pretty sight, right? A mirror literally, and figuratively, is an honest, sometimes brutally honest, reflection of our realities. It reflects all the good in our lives and reveals some of the areas that…um…need some attention. I know, facing the mirror is not our favorite activity of the day, is it? Although for some, a literal mirror can get a lot of positive attention because there may be an image of a person with a beautiful exterior but also the avoidance of facing the mirror reflecting other areas of our lives.
In the area of our physical fitness, we might avoid facing the mirror or stepping on the scale. It’s almost as if we take the attitude of “ignorance is bliss”. We may think, how can we not know how unhealthy we are? I was watching the “Biggest Loser” this week where a contestant said that after suffering through a period of deep emotional trauma, it was as if she woke up and was finally confronted with the image of her own fitness mirror, physically and emotionally. Another contestant, a cancer survivor, told herself in realization, “you didn’t have a choice in whether you had cancer, but you do have a choice of being obese”
In our finances, we don’t like to think of budgets and checkbooks. I talked to one friend this week who said that she finally looked at her checkbook for the first time in her life and the result was appalling! She realized that she had spent $2500 on…nothing! They were things like $10 at target, $15 at Abercrombie and Fitch, $30 at Wal-Mart, things that she really didn’t need. Another friend told me that she knew that she needed to make some changes but because life had thrown her some curve balls that she wasn’t willing to make those changes.
In our family relationships, we don’t like to have those hard conversations, do we? Either one, we internalize our feelings, hurts, and bitterness because we don’t want to rock the boat, or the emotions become so great that we have outbursts that cut and wound. Then, we assume that only time will heal so we brush the thoughts and feelings under the carpet…never facing the mirror.
And in our faith, we avoid this area like the plague. We find that the word of God is like a mirror into our soul. Scripture is a living book that cuts through all the “bull” of our lives and pierces straight to the core and roots of our thoughts and intentions. And you know what? We don’t like that! We don’t like having our lives being exposed or revealed. We don’t want to face the realities and voids in our lives. And if we do, we medicate it with other things like our work, hobbies, vices, goals, and even relationships, some of them toxic, to fill these gaps or cloud our reality.
I don’t share this to invite a cloud over your life, but in an effort to make you mad enough about your situation so that you say, “This has to change!” We say that often enough, but in reality, we have determined that the pain of change is far greater than the pain of settling. Sometimes we have to face the mirror and recognize that we are losing our lives by settling for them. We need to change! Tommy Tenney once said, “you cannot conquer what you don’t confront”.
I share this thought with you because I want to point you to the source of abundant life. A life of health and wealth, a life of passion and purpose, and ultimately, a life of hope. Jesus said, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal , and to kill , and to destroy : I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” (John 10:10) That is exactly what I want, don’t you?
So, I invite you to continue following my journey as I face my own life mirrors. Please feel free to comment on these posts as my goal is to establish an ongoing dialogue about these topics. As Tony Horton of P90x says, “Decide, Commit, Succeed”.