In other articles I have written about defining your purpose, understanding what your goals are and what elements you need to change in your lifestyle to help you achieve them. But in this article I am going to be focusing on how can you optimize your chances of success by optimizing your environment.
Our environment is absolutely crucial in terms of our self-development and the habits we commit to on a daily basis. Ask yourself these questions when you are thinking about your current environment and whether it's going to be able to support you in your goals.
#1: What People Are You Spending Time With On A Daily Basis
If the goal you're committing to is improving your health and fitness, then it is critical to be around other people who are committed to their health and fitness. If the people that you are surrounded by on a daily basis (whether that's your partner, work colleagues or friends) are not particularly supportive of the change you want to create in your life then it's going to make it very challenging for you to stay on track. It is important for you to find people that are going to support you on your journey. Hopefully, the people around you that love you will get on board with the change you want to create in your life, however, it is important to share with them your concerns and your goals and how they can help.
We naturally take on similar characteristics of the people we spend time with. For example, if you were brought up in a sporty family and you are part of a running club, naturally you will share an enjoyment for similar activities. However, if you are spending time with people who want to spend their time drinking alcohol and eating takeaway foods, that will be your social norm and you are more likely to commit to those habits. If you are an athlete playing a sport and your goal is to improve and reach your potential, you want to be at a club and working with a coach who will take you out of your comfort zone and push you to work hard.
#2 Do the places where you do your work inspire you?
We are not always going to feel motivated and inspired. There are going to be days where you feel like giving up or not putting in maximum effort. That is ok. You are normal. However, in these scenario’s the places where you train can be critical. Let me give two examples, in both examples you rock up feeling tired and down:
You turn up to do your training session at your local gym, they have murals of your childhood heroes on the walls, there are inspirational quotes everywhere you look, the speaker is blasting your favourite tunes and you can see the sweat dripping off of the other people in the gym as they give it 100%. You tell one of the coaches and a long-term friend that you aren’t mentally there, he replies “lace up champ, I’m doing this one with you”.
You walk into your home gym in the garage, there is nothing on the walls and your speaker is broken. It is freezing out here and there is no-one but you.
In what example will you feel more inspired to put the work in? I am not saying that to be a true champion you will need to learn to put the work in when the circumstances aren’t always in your favour, but….being in an environment that inspires you will be key to getting the most out of you.
#3 How much temptation is their in your life?
“It is much easier to be disciplined when there is no temptation” - Nathan Bell
One of the simplest ways to create an environment for success is to minimise the temptation within our vicinity day to day. Using the example of a young determined athlete who has the goal of making it as a professional in the nearby future, one critical component of success will be good eating habits and daily nutrition. Let’s be real, 99% of people on this Earth will have their guilty pleasure foods, whether that is sweets, chocolate, takeaways or even the whole lot! But these foods are not conducive to playing sport at an elite level (or just having optimal health).
Talking from personal experience, I love a Ferrero Rocher or Reece’s Pieces as much as the next person, however I make life easier for myself by not buying any of these temptations. When doing food shopping, I will only purchase the foods that I know will align with my goals. Yes, I see these foods in the supermarket, but I have two key strategies here:
Ask myself the question - does this food help me achieve my long-term goals?
Make sure I am not food shopping on a hungry belly where I will throw anything and everything in the trolley.
The same principle can apply to every aspect of your life. If you don’t want to splurge on Netflix, don’t have a TV in your bedroom and limit yourself to one episode a day. If you want to avoid alcohol, don’t go clubbing or store alcohol at home.
Whilst setting goals and committing to new daily habits are great concepts, it is our day to day environment that will really be critical in helping us be consistent. We all know discipline and consistency are essential for long-term success, make them easier by cultivating an environment that will inspire your to be the best version of yourself rather than tempt you in to procrastination and downfall.
If you would like support achieving your health and fitness goals, jump on a call to discuss how we can help: