What if you could do just ONE thing – and all of your health and weight issues would go away? No, this isn’t fantasy. It’s actually quite possible…as long as you do the One Thing that’s right for you! Let me explain how you can simplify your lifestyle – and get better results.
A Real-Life Example of Focusing on One Thing
Turning 50 is often a landmark event, but for Rick, a C-suite executive of a Fortune 100 company, it represented even more. His dad had died suddenly at the age of 51. So, when his doctor discussed the results of his blood tests, he was very concerned. Not only had he put on 60 pounds since his athletic youth, his blood glucose was now in the pre-diabetic range. And, while he’d been pre-hypertensive for years, he now officially had high blood pressure.
So, he came to see me about getting on a healthier eating plan. After spending more than an hour talking about his health, weight, and lifestyle, it was obvious that the most important thing for him to do had nothing to do with his diet. Oh sure, what he ate was important. But, if he did just one other thing…he wouldn’t need to stress so much about what he put in his mouth. Just one thing.
Where This Comes From
I’ve been speaking about this concept of simplification for decades. And, I elaborate about this in my online course, Dr. Jo’s Better Body. The course is based on my research in which I interviewed people who had been successful at losing weight (and keeping it off) and asked how they did it. I was blown away with stories of how they stopped trying to do everything perfect – and, instead, focused on just ONE Thing. They often say, “Oh it’s no big deal all I did was…” – which was then followed up by the ONE thing they did that they found to be easy to maintain long-term.
The ONE Thing
The ONE Thing will be different for each of us. So what’s the ONE Thing that YOU can do, right now, to help move you to achieve great results in your health and weight? Gary Keller, the author of The ONE Thing, offers this powerful question to help you find your ONE Thing. The following question incorporates both the big picture (right direction in life) and small focus (the right action) to help you achieve your goals.
“What is the ONE Thing I can do /such that by doing it / everything else will be easier or unnecessary?
Forget What You SHOULD Do – What CAN You Do?
Do you have a long list of all the things you SHOULD do to be healthier, leaner, stronger, faster? Are you feeling guilty that you’re not doing all of them – or perhaps not doing them well? That’s not surprising. I’m here to tell you to let it go. There’s no need to do everything. Heck, I eat chocolate every day – and I don’t feel guilty about that. That’s because I do the MOST important thing for my health. Keller reminds us to just do the things you can do – and to forget about all the thing you SHOULD do or COULD do. He says, “Can beats intention every time.”
When Keller states, “Such that by doing it..” He reminds us that the one thing that you choose to do is the bridge between just doing something – and doing something for a specific purpose. For example, right now I can think of a number of things to do – sweep the floor, make a snack, call a friend….but that’s not going to help me to meet my goal of booking of finishing my first online course. But, writing this article….on a topic relevant to my online course will! So, let me continue…
It’s the First Domino
Once you’ve identified the ONE Thing that would make everything else easier, then you’ve found your first domino. Because, once that first domino falls, you’ll discover a line of dominos behind it ready to fall or already down.
Rick’s ONE Thing
Let’s go back to Rick. He wanted to lose weight, lower his blood glucose, and drop his blood pressure. Whew! That’s a lot. After we discussed his lifestyle, it became obvious that his ONE Thing was to get more sleep.
For years, he’d get just 4-5 hours of sleep a night. He had convinced himself that, with everything he had to do, that he just didn’t have time to squander in bed. But, there’s so much research that supports that getting enough quality sleep isn’t just important to ward off fatigue. Sleep deprivation raises blood glucose and blood pressure levels. People who are sleep deprived tend to eat more, exercise less – and tend to weigh more than others getting adequate sleep. Not to mention that sleep loss increases risk of making errors and working less productively.
Rick was convinced and started going to bed earlier in order to get in at least six solid hours of sleep. While most people need 7-8 hours of sleep, he decided that six was a good start for him. And, guess what? Rick found he had more energy – and that it was easier for him to make healthier food choices. And, he also found that he naturally felt like moving his body more. So, not surprising, his weight dropped along with his blood glucose and blood pressure.
Other People’s ONE Thing
So, what’s YOUR ONE Thing? What’s that one thing you can do such that by doing it everything else becomes easier or unnecessary? Heidi found that taking a short 20-minute nap at the end of her workday helped her manage her evening work responsibilities (business dinners and meetings) when she was on the road. Jaime ate out often for business. She found that if she just took a mindful moment before picking up her fork, she didn’t overeat.
Pat found that if she ate a high-protein breakfast, then she wasn’t as hungry mid-morning and didn’t raid the vending machines. Stan found that starting the day with a brisk walk led to healthier decisions throughout the day.
And, for me, it’s all about getting more energy. I find it impossible to focus, concentrate, and produce quality work when my energy tank was empty. So, decades ago, I started eating adequate calories in the form of six small meals a day – and still do. That’s my ONE thing. Oh, that and having small amounts of chocolate every day 🙂
What’s YOUR ONE thing that you can do such that by doing it everything else becomes easier or unnecessary? Send me an email and let me know.