Are You Getting off Track? Three Warning Signs…

Transformation is a continual path of rich and rewarding personal growth that leads to greater physical health and mental clarity. Or at least it has the potential to be. The key is to keep on doing what’s working and to steer clear of common obstacles and roadblocks in the process.

Knowing which pitfalls to be on the lookout for can save you a whole lot of time and trouble; it can also help you prevent a slip, a slide or a complete relapse back into your “before” condition. With that in mind, let me tell you about three of the most common signs that there’s transformation trouble ahead.

Warning Sign #1: You’ve Found a New Comfort Zone

The motivation to transform is high when you’re hanging on by a thread. For example, a drowning man makes all kinds of promises to God that he will right his ways and change his life. But once his feet are firmly back on the ground, his motivation to do the work necessary to change instantly becomes very low. He is comfortable again.

All too often this happens in the transformation process. When someone has a personal health scare or reaches a moral rock bottom, their willingness to commit themselves to the transformation process is high. Their compliance is strong. They’re excellent students and they get great results. Their results can be so good, in fact, that their motivation to keep on growing all but dissolves. And they find a new comfort zone, which leads to transformation trouble.

It’s imperative we understand that every comfort zone becomes a “comfort trap” eventually. Any place that we can hide out and indulge in excessive amounts of so-called pleasure will become dangerous as it fosters apathy addiction, as well as removes us from the natural flow of evolutionary pressure. The key is becoming more comfortable with continual change and less comfortable with staying the same. And that is so important in our transformation process. But, unfortunately, it’s something that we can easily overlook.

To keep moving forward, what I teach is to continually accept new challenges and invite positive pressure into your life. This works most every time. Challenges like transforming your life’s greatest adversity from tragedy to triumph, to overcome an addiction, or even train for and complete a marathon can really keep us on our toes mentally and emotionally. Embracing challenges keeps us in the dynamic flow of life, and it also keeps us from getting stuck or resisting the Divine Will. It also helps us to become more comfortable and excited about life while we’re in the process of change.

What challenge have you embraced in your life that is giving you positive pressure to move forward today? If something specific doesn’t come to mind right away, you may very well be headed for transformation trouble. You can course correct now by accepting a challenge which invokes the power of positive pressure and keeps you from settling into a new comfort zone.

Warning Sign #2: You Have No Specific, Inspiring Goals

When we set specific and inspiring goals with a timeline and deadline, we discover that this immediately focuses our energy and improves our clarity. And, in turn, this increases our motivation and propels us into action, doing the work that needs to be done to arrive at our predetermined destination.

The ability to set meaningful, energizing goals is something that we should all learn by the sixth grade. Unfortunately, the vast majority of people never become proficient at this essential skill for making your life work; and as a result, far too many folks never get the opportunity to discover even a fraction of their true potential. Like boats without a rudder, people with no specific and inspiring goals drift through life.

Meaningful and inspiring goals give our lives direction. And since we can follow so many different routes in life today, selecting a goal is literally among the most important decisions that we’ll ever make.

With transformation, we aspire to set goals which make our own lives healthier and happier, and which also make a difference in the lives of others. When we do this, we’re constantly growing, learning and bettering ourselves, and we’re also improving the world around us by being the change.

It’s really remarkable the way this works, time and time again. When we decide what we truly want out of all the possible things we could choose, and we focus on that objective each day, it is as if we invoke a creative force beyond our abilities. We don’t know exactly how it works, but most every person who absolutely commits themselves to achieving meaningful goals can give personal testimony to the power of its effects.

Probably the only thing that I find more stunning than the power of setting meaningful and inspiring goals is how often people overlook this vitally important practice. Thousands of people who’ve completed the 18-week Transformation, and over a million people who have done the Body-for-LIFE Challenge over the past decade, have all had a direct, firsthand experience with how effective this relatively simple practice is; yet, as soon as they achieve their initial goals, many people don’t set new ones. And right there, their progress begins to end.

So what are your meaningful and inspiring transformation goals right now? They should be specific, measurable, with a firm timeline and deadline. And they should give you a feeling of excitement and enthusiasm when you envision yourself achieving them. If you can’t bring your specific goals to mind right away, that’s a sign your transformation is headed for trouble, or perhaps you’re already in it. You can course correct now by becoming clear about your goals and committing to them.

Warning Sign #3: You’ve Strayed from the Group

Among my favorite television programs are those gorgeous HD shows on Discovery which are basically chronicles of natural life. They’re always filled with inspiring beauty and occasionally a life lesson or two. For example, watching the migrating herds of gazelle crossing the Serengeti, there’s always one that strays from the group and ends up in trouble.

For us, being connected to community and not straying away is also a good idea. Especially a community like ours where pretty much everyone holds the intention of making healthy changes in their lives which make a difference in the lives of others. The strength of a group of people who hold a similar intention cannot be underestimated. There’s the advantage of being able to give and receive support and encouragement. There’s the added benefit of accountability and camaraderie. And there’s the power of the unconditional group support. The advantages of this type of fellowship have been well known for hundreds, even thousands of years; and now, even modern science is verifying the positive effects.

Remember the importance of “right environments” and realize that people are a very big part of that. We become what we surround ourselves with, to a very significant extent; and without healthy, open, honest and transforming people in our lives, it’s hard to achieve our goals. Yet the opposite is also true – we do well at making challenging changes in our lives when we’re connected to others who are making challenging changes in theirs.

Whether your goals include losing weight, overcoming addiction, working through a bout of depression, or reaching a new personal best, connecting with a supportive, positive, unconditional community where others are seeking the same or similar victories is essential. More and more we’re realizing that significant and meaningful transformation in our lives is something that is hard to achieve on our own. We need help from others to succeed, and we also need the opportunity to help others succeed. Yet sometimes we behave as if that weren’t so. And we stray from the community and try to go it alone. There again is a sign of transformation trouble.

Conclusion

Make no mistake, in our heart of hearts we all want to experience continual growth and betterment of ourselves and our lives. Transformation is an ongoing process that can allow us to move forward in that direction. It’s a lifelong journey that can help us continually experience better physical and mental fitness. However, it only works if we work it. As soon as we take our eye off the ball and move our attention and focus elsewhere (deliberately or accidentally), our growth comes to a standstill, or more accurately put, it begins to regress.

And so with this reminder to be on the lookout for transformation trouble before it goes unnoticed for too long, we’ve got the opportunity to bring our awareness back to the right place. You don’t have to wait until you fall back to your before condition to realize that you’ve gone off course; you can begin to recognize that right here and now. Course correction and being on the lookout for trouble ahead is very much a part of becoming a successful, long-term transformer. As you develop mastery in this skillset, you’ll find your results are more consistent, sustainable, inspiring and enjoyable. =)

Comments

  1. Clinton Morin says:

    i think im sliding off course. i made it through the first challenge but only lost 20 lbs i’m finding it hard to want to do another it’s just a bad day. maybe it’s just that but i feel no motivation today.

  2. Gloria Berlin says:

    Thanks Bill for the encouragement!! I have very specific goals, however, I’m wondering if I pushed for something too big. So I decided that if I don’t reach the exact # I’ll still be that much closer to the goal.

  3. Bill I can relate to this. I lost recently lost my profile on transformation. (hoping it will get resolved) I never knew how much I needed my support groups to keep me accountable. Thank you for once again sharing this blog.It’s always a great reminder.
    -Terri

  4. mary scohera says:

    Just coming back from ‘off-track’ (thankfully, only up 8lbs instead of my usual – wake up and realize I’ve gained 50lbs)! You are so right on in that transformation comes when one becomes complacent. I’m learning, slowly but surely. I experienced all 3 of the signs and will be vigilant going forward. So happy to have ‘found’ you again. A long ago Body For Life person happy to see you are still positively changing lives!

  5. As usual, right on time with the best advice!=)

  6. redriverii says:

    Good one.

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