My Journey from Discovery to Acceptance to Change
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Hope Through Authenticity

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Covering Your But...

Okay, I’ll admit it -- I stole this title from a cell phone commercial.  It’s so perfect I’ll take the risk ….

I know you have a habit you want to build or a habit you want to stop or a goal you want to reach.  Likely there are several.  I’ve asked around and here are some that I keep hearing:

  • Start to exercise
  • Lose weight
  • Eat better (and that’s defined a thousand different ways)
  • Spend more time with my kids
  • Have sex more
  • Put away ‘work’ at a decent hour (or live a more balanced life)
  • Read more
  • Be more social (join a meetup group, go to a Bible Study, go to a book club)
  • Learn to do x-y-z (I heard some interesting things here:  bake, kick box, krav maga, pole dance)
  • Take a class
  • Find time to do my ‘hobby’
  • Finish x-y-z (for me, it’s my novel)

Do you have something in mind?  My guess is that something – some ONE thing – popped right up.  Say it out loud. 

Let me digress … last week, I met with a lady who is interested in starting an accountability group.  When I asked her what she wanted accountability for, she said:  1. I want to spend more time with my kids; and 2.  I must start back exercising.   The next few minutes told the story …. As we started to talk about ways to make those dreams reality she came up with …

  • But … I have to work then (she leaves for work at 7am, returns at 6pm, starts back at 7pm – she can’t/won’t leave her email)
  • But … I hate mornings
  • But … my husband just doesn’t do the tasks well enough for me to leave it for him (I suggested that 2 mornings a week, he gets the kids to school and give her two mornings to exercise)
  • But … I don’t know what to do when I go to a gym
  • But … I feel silly/intimidated when I go to an exercise class
  • But … I can’t leave my house if it’s messy (she avoids exercise and instead neatens the house)
  • But … I don’t want to change …. x-y-z

TA DA … see why I like the title … SHE HAS GOT TO COVER THOSE BUTS ….

Back to YOUR goal … You’ve said it out loud (right?).  Now, go ahead and start saying all the reasons this hasn’t happened yet.  What are you buts?

My one primary goal is to be more consistent with eating right … I’ve defined what that means for me (right now, I’m wanting to eliminate most processed food)… but ….

My Buts Bite Me

  • But … I don’t want to give up coffee
  • But … I don’t have the time/desire/energy to cook healthy meals every night
  • But … I don’t have any idea what to prepare (I’m sick of my current ideas and finding new ones takes even more energy)
  • But … I get lonely eating at home for lunch every day and it’s hard to eat out wisely (that’s another but, isn’t it?)
  • But … I want one coke zero a day – it’s refreshing and I earn it, damn it!
  • But … I frigging like processed food!

Get the picture?

What I Have To Decide… (and you do too)

If I can’t/won’t cover those buts then is this truly a goal for me?  Or is it a ‘should’ goal?  In other words, do I ‘want to eat right consistently’ or do I think I should want to?  If I truly wanted it, wouldn’t I blast through the buts? 

“To not give a fuck about adversity, you must first give a fuck about something more important than adversity.”

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson

Do I care enough about eating right to suffer through the adversity that I must suffer? 

Authenticity

Here’s where authenticity kicks in.  How many of your goals are authentic?  Do you truly want to lose that weight, learn that skill, meet those people, spend more time with your kids?  Or is it societal expectations, familial expectations, or some other external force speaking? 

If the ‘buts’ are keeping you from moving forward, take the time to see if you are on the right path.  It’s okay to weigh what you weigh.  It’s okay to eat what I eat.  It’s okay if I never learn to kick box.  It’s okay if I never become more social.  What goals do I want to more than I want to avoid the suffering?  Be honest – be authentic – find the goals that really mean something and I bet you can find ways to cover those buts …

Over the next few days, I’m going to really think about this ‘eating right’ goal – where is this goal coming from?  What is the reason I have that goal anyway (do I want -- to look better, to feel better, to be able to mock my bad-eating family, to look good to others?).  I may just find that eating right is not MY goal or I may narrow down the truth behind why I want it and that will give me the strength to face the struggle!  I’ll let you know!

BTW – The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck by Mark Manson is an EXCELLENT book if you can handle his language and crude examples!  I had people at tables nearby thinking I was crazy because I laughed out loud so often – and yet, I found awesome nuggets to carry with me through life!

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    In April 2012 I had a mental breakdown. The real thing. I have about 36 hours that I don’t remember....

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