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[Wellness Wednesday] Discovering Our ‘Why’ For Wellness Changes

Happy Wednesday everyone, and welcome to the final Wellness Wednesday of 2018! My son is coming home for Christmas, so I’ll be taking a little break for the last week of the year.

Thanks so much to everyone who gave me input last week about our upcoming Wellness Wednesday posts. You all gave me some great information and inspiration, and I look forward to addressing the topics that will be most helpful to you.

As we’re quickly approaching the New Year, and it’s historically the time for making, and often breaking, resolutions (for tips to help turn resolutions into reality, check out this post), I wanted to talk about discovering why we want to make those changes to begin with.

Why is why important? Having a solid reason for making changes helps us keep going when things get hard, because let’s face it — it will get hard. Making lasting changes is tough. It requires hard work, perseverance, and sometimes sweat and tears. If we don’t have a good reason for making the change, it’s easy to just give up.

At one fitness club where I worked, we offered a fantastic class for new members that combined classroom teaching about nutrition, exercise, goal setting, etc. with one day per week of working out as a group. Often, when people talked about why they were there, they’d say something like, “My doctor said I need to exercise more” or “I want to feel (or look) better.”

woodpecker on feeder https://reclaiminghopewellness.com
This woodpecker definitely discovered his why….

These are perfectly good reasons to start lifestyle changes, but they’re not enough to sustain them. This goes for any type of wellness changes we’re talking about. Remember, wellness encompasses more than just physical wellness. It also consists of environmental, occupational, spiritual, emotional, financial, social, and intellectual dimensions. For us to make sustainable changes in any of these dimensions, knowing why we want to make them in the first place can be key to our success.

Woodpecker on suet https://reclaiminghopewellness.com
He was hungry…

Discovering the why for your desired change doesn’t have to be difficult, but it does need to be something compelling enough to keep you going when the newness has worn off, the work of making the change has become an uphill slog, or you’re feeling discouraged because you aren’t making progress quickly enough.

Woodpecker Eating Upside Down On Feeder https://reclaiminghopewellness.com

…and wasn’t giving up until he reached his goal!

Questions We Can Ask To Help Us Discover Our Why:

WHY? Sometimes it’s just that simple. We ask why until we get to the foundational reason we want to make that change. The internal conversation may go something like this:

I want to stop eating junk food. Why? Because it’s not good for me, and I want to feel better and live longer. Why? Because I want to be here to see my children grow up, and I want to feel as well as possible so I can participate fully in their lives. I also want to set a good example for them, because I know habits formed now can be with them throughout their lives.

This is a really simplistic example, but for most parents, their children are great motivation to do even unpleasant things, because they want what’s best for them.

How does this wellness change support my core values? Our core values are what drive us, so being able to tie our desired change to our values can compel us to keep going when difficulties arise.

What value will this add to my life? Knowing how the change will help us in the long run can help us stay focused on the big picture. When we’re only looking at what’s happening now, if we’re not progressing as quickly as we like, it’s easy to give up, but if we can take a long-range view, that will enable us to keep pressing on in spite of feelings of discouragement.

How does this support what I’m passionate about? Just as we talked about earlier with the kids, when there’s something we’re passionate about, we’re often willing to persevere through discomfort or discouragement in order to reach our goals.

Is this important to me? This is vital to recognize, because if  the wellness change or goal in question is not important to you personally, it’s hard to determine a why. That’s because there isn’t one. Sometimes we set certain wellness goals because we feel it’s something we should do rather than from an actual feeling it’s something we need to do. If there’s no compelling, personal reason for us to make the change, we might be better served by addressing something more personal or important to us.

Discovering our why can be a vital part of our success when it comes to making wellness changes. Knowing why those changes are important, how they support our core values and passions, and what they can add to our lives can provide motivation to make wellness changes and keep us going when we’re tempted to give up.

Do you start with why when making wellness changes or setting new wellness goals? If so, what has been your experience with it?




  1. Loved this post Terri. I totally agree that change can be good, and in the past several years I had to make a lifestyle change in my eating habits due to a health condition. At first it was extremely difficult but in time I learned to cope with it and accept it as my daily routine. When it comes to health, I’m all in. Unfortunately, there are those that have a hard time with it and your post gives good points for why we need to make that adjustment. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Thank you so much Mark! I appreciate your kind words. Congratulations on successfully changing your eating habits. It’s amazing how hard things can be at first and then become so routine for us after we’ve been at it a while, isn’t it? I hope you have a wonderful holiday season!

    1. Thank you so much Wendi! I’m glad you found this helpful. I hope this will give you the missing piece of the puzzle. Sending hugs your way!

    1. Thank you V.J.! Please let me know if you try it, and whether it helps. Hope you guys aren’t experiencing rough weather with the storm down there….

      1. Woo hoo! I’m glad you’re enjoying some warm, sunny weather. It was sunny here yesterday too, though a little chilly. Today is going to be another story….lots of rain coming. Oh well, a good excuse to stay inside and stay warm. 😁 Enjoy your day!

  2. Love this!
    I wanted to thank you for always supporting Fibro Friday and Fibro Blogger Directory and helping to spread Fibromyalgia awareness. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with your family x.

    1. Thank you so much Lee! I just appreciate that you’ve given so many of us a place to gather for support and a platform to raise awareness. Wishing you and your family a wonderful Christmas season and an upcoming year filled with blessings! Hugs!

  3. We know what to do and in the past have done well. This past year has not been a stellar year, however. We are joining with several of our neighbors on a wellness program. We have 2 coaches and are supportive of each other.

    1. That’s great to hear that you guys are joining in with your neighbors George. It’s always good to have accountability; it helps us stay on track. Wishing you all the best with your wellness program!

  4. I love this post. I just wanted to tell you that I totally agree that asking yourself ” why” is important. It can be a reality check to ourselves and is a good reminder of what are values are! Sticking to our core values and beliefs will help us live our lives to the fullest even if it is bumpy along the way.

    1. Thank you so much Emily! I completely agree with you — sticking to our core values and beliefs is vital to being able to thrive regardless of whatever comes our way. Blessings to you, and Happy New Year!

    1. Thank you so much Kristie! I completely agree with you that we should always align what we do with our core values. If we’re careful to do that, we can ensure we’re being true to ourselves and living up to our full potential. Blessings to you!

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