We are into our second week of a fitness and wellness challenge and I thought it was important to discuss the difference between kindness and accountability to and how we actually need both when it comes to adopting a sustainable healthy lifestyle.
I am noticing women this week at both ends of the spectrum. There are women being 100% accountable to themselves and their goals- but without much kindness. This can be seen in very strict diets, exercise regimes and a “Just do it no matter what the trade off” kind of attitude. Sure, this will often get you results, but I encourage women in this space to ask themselves if it feels good and if it is sustainable? Are you creating habits that you plan on continuing for the rest of your life- or is it just a quick fix?
Our nutritionist Nicky Saliba talked to me recently about seeing firsthand hundreds of situations when women have stuck to an 8 or 10 week diet to shred lots of weight, only to put all the weight (plus more) back on afterwards. I personally have seen women push their bodies to the extreme during workouts for extended periods of time, only to find themselves burnout or injured in the process. Why is this? Because in order for it to be sustainable we must be kind to ourselves in the process.
There will be days when your body needs to rest. There will be social situations where you should enjoy the food on offer. There will be days when you really feel like a glass of wine or some chocolate or you should prioritise time with your loved ones over going to the gym. This is ok and this is called balance. This is the way of life we should be adopting and also teaching our children to adopt.
At the other end of the spectrum I am seeing women being kind to themselves, but not as accountable as they could be. If you happen to be ‘having one of those days’ everyday and not following your nutrition or exercise plans consistently, then I’d like you to hold the mirror up and ask yourself if you’re being accountable. In the process of being kind to ourselves, if that involves allowing us to not commit to our intentions, then the end result may not actually be kind to your body or your health at all. For example. Some women may be feeling stressed and eating high sugar content food everyday and justifying it by saying ‘oh well, my body wanted that because I was having a bad day’. Sure, I had one of these the other day and ate heaps of cake and didn’t exercise and I was ok with that because I knew that the next day I would be back to my normal routines. But, if this becoming a regular occurrence for you then you will be creating a circle that is really hard to break. Maybe there is an underlying factor you need to address? Are you craving sugary food because you are not getting enough sleep or because you are stressed? Are you just repeating a behavior that you’ve followed for years? Are you just not planning to be successful in changing your lifestyle? Do you just not really care whether you change or not? If we don’t start to hold our selves accountable- how can we actually expect change?
If you find yourself in either of these categories, then firstly- you are not alone. At WTribe we feel it’s our responsibility to offer you another option. Health should not be a constant cycle of diets and exercise regimes and feeling high and then guilty. We strive to teach you to have balance and to enjoy life and to focus on the things important to you- which is why both kindness and accountability are two of our 3 core values. We want women to thrive, not just survive.