We are all human. Being imperfect and adapting is in our nature. We make mistakes, but we have the ability to change in order to correct them. In doing so, we still tend to not know how to get back into routine after slipping off "the band wagon". When we cheat on our diet, the guilt keeps us from making the proper adjustments. When we fail, the shame and disappointment keeps us from persevering and eventually succeeding. When we lose someone, the grief of losing someone you love keeps us from enjoying the life we once cherished. You do not have to lose your momentum in your pursuit when you take a few steps back. More importantly, you do not have to lose yourself when life doesn't go according to plan. In this article I will discuss how you can get "back on the wagon" and move forward with your endeavors in life.
Find Where You Are
The biggest mistake people make during a time of "falling off the wagon" and then wanting to get right back on, is that people tend to put themselves back to WHERE THEY WERE and not WHERE THEY ARE. It can be tempting to deny you are a few steps back in your pursuit. The last thing you want to accept when spending a big chunk of your life pursuing, is that it is gone (or at least is less than it was). This could mean losing strength and size during time away from the gym, gaining excess fat when cheating on your diet, or even forgetting what you learned in your field of study when taking a lot of time away from school. Instead of adding to the frustration and trying to be right where you were before falling off, find where you are and set yourself up for progression. Focus on progressing back to where you were. Next thing you know you will be further than you have ever been.
It's A Mistake, Treat It Like One
You made a mistake. GOOD! Now use it to your advantage by learning from it. Something I see people do over and over is make a mistake, just to make that same mistake again and again. Mistakes, being something you can learn from and actually move forward in life, when repeated, get you absolutely nowhere in life (and can even move you backwards everytime). When you get out of routine, find what caused you to fall out of pursuit and learn how to avoid (or resist) that cause next go around after being back on the wagon.
It Happened, Move On
Whether you lost your relationship, job, or progress in the gym, realize that it happened. Yes, it happened! You can't change that, but you can move forward from it. We tend to attach ourselves to the past, which keeps us from being able to move towards the future. After my lower back injury I was still deeply attached (and still am) to the idea of lifting as heavy as possible for a lower amount of repetitions. I still find myself trying to push back that way every now and then, but I had to learn to move on with a different style of training in order to stay progressing in the gym. Accept what happened and move forward in a more efficient manner, which brings me to the next tip for getting back on the wagon.
Adjust To What You Learned
Much like treating your "falling off the wagon" as a mistake, you must adjust your actions according to the situation. If an injury caused you to keep time away from the gym, then adjusting your training to work out without pain and heal is essential. If an unhealthy relationship with food caused you (and continues to cause you) to slip up on your diet, realize how you perceive food and take a different approach to dieting. Whether it is in or outside of the gym (let alone fitness and diet), adjusting to what you have learned is crucial.
Analyze How Much You Want It
The last part of getting back into pursuit after slipping up, is that if you slipped up there is a reason. Your want for the moment was greater than your long-term happiness. You wanted that cheat meal more than you wanted to have a healthier life. You wanted those lazy days to sit at home more than you wanted a stronger body. Fact is, you just didn't want the long-term product more than the instant gratification. With that in mind, you have to analyze how much you REALLY want the long-term product of daily commitment. Is dieting everyday worth a healthier life to you? Is hitting the gym everyday worth building a physique you are proud of? The choice is up to you. Many say it is, but actions show otherwise. Determine if it is REALLY important to you and make your decisions in life accordingly.
When you have fallen and it is time to get back on the wagon, there are a few things to keep in mind. You must: find where you are (not where you were) and work from there, realize falling off the wagon was a mistake and treat it like one, accept what has happened and move on, adjust your actions according to what you have learned, and analyze how much you really want the end result versus the instant gratification. Falling off the wagon is easy, but getting back on can be just as easy if you follow the steps listed above.
If you like the article don't forget to like and share, and if you have any other tips for getting back towards your pursuit, leave them in the comments below.