Why unsexy is often better for you
Aren’t you tired of all those crazy advertisements for broccoli? You know the ones I am talking about, currently running on prime time television slots and endless Instagram celebrities holding up handfuls of the green stuff, spruiking its benefits.
Surely you’ve seen these?
Yes, I am being sarcastic. These ads don’t exist. However you will see advertisements for the latest super high calorie “healthy snack”.
I have to admit it though, broccoli isn’t very sexy. And if something’s not sexy how is it going to capture our attention in the eight seconds that our current attention span is thought to now be.
You read that correctly: recent research claims that since the introduction of smartphones our attention span is now shorter than that of a goldfish. (They have an average attention span of 9 seconds apparently!) If your attention span has allowed you to make it this far thank you, as getting you to this point is apparently getting more and more difficult.
But back to the broccoli…
If broccoli represents all the good things you could do to be a more healthier, positive you — how do we make something so boring sexy enough to actually engage our imaginations and keep us interested long enough to get the benefits?
We could simply make a list of the top five habits you could do to make positive change to your lifestyle. Apparently lists rank high on the attention-grabbing scale, which explains why they’re everywhere.
Splashed across magazine covers or filling your Facebook news feed — the five secrets to getting a six pack, three steps to toned arms and the current power food of the month; how to get a Kardashian booty in six weeks. These are all aimed at grabbing our attention, promising quick results and instant satisfaction quicker than you can say “that doesn’t sound like such hard work”.
Here’s the thing though: life isn’t always sexy and it doesn’t always come wrapped with a ribbon. It can require discipline to eat similar things day in and day out if you’re goal is fat loss or muscle gains. But if you have a goal in mind, it’s a test of willpower. And the process can be hard, but the results are worth their weight in steamed broccoli and chicken.
So considering all this, how does anyone stay focused and committed to a healthy lifestyle? In my experience the starting point always requires a compelling reason. By compelling I mean something that has emotional significance to me and I am therefore committed to the challenge regardless of how uncomfortable it may be. If the reason’s not that compelling the motivation to stay the course may fade — think about what motivates you the most. Family? Self development?
Even if it’s a school reunion or simply looking amazing as you walk down the aisle — these are things that can motivate us. And while they may sound superficial at the start, often these can often lead to becoming a truly motivated individual striving to be the best person you can be. Boring broccoli bits and all. And that, in my opinion, is very sexy.
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