Unrealistic Expectations – The Reason Many People Fail

Think back to the first time you had sex? (Yeah, I know you remember that. Everyone does.)

Chances are you expected it to be like those erotic scenes you see in films. Where everything goes smoothly. But let’s be honest, it was likely nothing like that. If it was anything like mine it would’ve been awkward and uncomfortable. Maybe I was just doing it wrong.

The point is, going into your first sexual experience, you had unrealistic expectations. Many people approach their health and fitness goals with the same mindset.

The health & fitness industry is full of false promises and clickbait headlines. So it is no surprise that you expect to get results quickly.

A quick Google search on weight loss comes up with the following links:

“Lose 30 pounds of fat in 3 weeks!”
“I gained 15 pounds of muscle in 10 days. Click here to find out more!”

Those headlines are setting you up for failure.

They are unrealistic expectations. You need to understand that believing these headline is hurting you, not helping you.

Setting yourself unrealistic expectations for your health and fitness goals is a sure fire way to failure. When you don’t get the results you were promised it is likely you will be demotivated and fed up. The result? You’ll quit and end up right back where you started. This is especially true if this is your first voyage into the world of fitness.

Will Smith once said, “Being realistic is the most common path to mediocrity”. I like that sentiment and for the most part I think it works. Just not with your health and fitness goals. At least not straight away.

Depending on your start point and mindset, setting realistic goals may be necessary. If you are just starting your health and fitness journey don’t expect too much too soon.

Setting yourself real and accurate expectations is a major key to your success. Think about this. If you want to lose 50 pounds then set yourself a manageable target of 8-10 months to get the job done. If that sounds like too long to work on getting in better shape then you need to sort out your warped perspective of health & fitness.

On a piece of paper spend 5–10 minutes writing down the answers to the questions below. (No, seriously, pick up a pen and start writing).

  1. What do I want to achieve? (be specific)I want to lose 20 pounds so I can fit into my old clothes. I want to look in the mirror and be happy with what I see looking back at me. I want to be able to walk up a flights of stairs without getting out of breath.
  2. Why do I want to achieve it? (again, be specific)I’m doing this for me. I’m not getting any younger and I don’t want my health & fitness to be the reason I don’t enjoy my later years. I want to feel confident in my own skin and to feel good about myself.
  3. How much do I want it?I’ve put this of for too long. I want this more than anything. I know it’s going to be hard work but the rewards will be worth it.
  4. How long am I willing to work to reach my goal?As long as it takes. I know that results won’t happen overnight. Any changes I make, I want to last. This about a lifestyle not a quick fix. It takes as long as it takes.

Don’t continue reading until you’ve taken those steps. Write things down. Pin it somewhere you can see it everyday. This is important.

Getting in better shape isn’t meant to be easy. It’s going to be a challenge. But if you go into it with mindset of creating sustainable change, it gets easier. Losing 20 pounds in 3 weeks won’t do that but losing 20 pounds in 3 months might. Yes, it’s a much longer span of time but to be honest, if you aren’t prepared to put in some ground work then you don’t deserve the results you crave.

You have to weigh up what’s important. If getting in better shape is that important to you then you won’t care how long it takes. You’ll just get on with it.

Look at it this way. Let’s say over the last 12 months you’ve gained 20 pounds. So you decide enough is enough. It’s taken you 12 months to gain that extra 20 pounds. Do you think you can lose it all in a healthy and sustainable way in just 3 weeks?

Now, I’m not saying that because it took 12 months to gain the 20 pounds, it will take 12 months to lose it. Not at all. Because this time you’ll be doing something about it. That said setting your sights at 3–4 months will give you a much greater chance of success. But more importantly, it will be more likely that you’ll keep it off for good. Which is the whole point, right?

Most people have been working on their belly fat for 5-10 years. You can’t change that in a few weeks. Get some perspective. It takes time, consistency and patience to get the kind of results you want.

Don’t get pissed off when your 50lbs of fat doesn’t drop off after one week of no chocolate. Beware of people selling you quick fix plans that promise extreme results like the headlines above.

Much like the first time you had sex, this is likely ending disappointingly for you. I’m not providing a magic answer. I’m not giving you the latest key to fast track your results. There isn’t one. Fat loss takes time. But like anything, if you are consistent, committed and keep your eye on the prize, it’s worth the wait. Get this mindset right first and the process will be much easier.

If you need any help on your health and fitness journey send me an email and I’ll help you out.

Categories : Fitness, Lifestyle, Mindset
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