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When developing new habits, challenges are guaranteed. Every day, opportunities to quit or fall into bad practices will present themselves. To overcome these challenges, we have to answer one question: why?
The Importance of Your Why
WHY wake up early? WHY work out? WHY push hard?
The ability to answer your why, although it may seem simple, is the key to developing new habits. If we have an answer, we stay on the path. If we don’t have an answer, we fall off. An effective strategy to answering the why question is having a vision—and I’m not talking about eyesight. I’m talking about the future we want to see for ourselves.
In 2017, I broke my neck in the Collegiate Rugby National Championship and lost my ability to move. In one moment, I went from an elite athlete to being trapped, completely numb and motionless, in my body. I couldn’t understand how this happened to me, and I was terrified. But I knew one thing: I wanted to walk again. I wanted to do what doctors told me was impossible.
To accomplish my goal, I had to understand my vision in perfect clarity. Every day I closed my eyes and thought of what I wanted to see in my future. I envisioned myself standing out of my wheelchair for the first time, taking my first steps, feeling what it was like to have my life back, and being grateful to my past self for making it happen.
Tears streamed down my face when I thought of my vision. My appetite to make it a reality was insatiable. When why questions came up as I worked on my habits, and they certainly did, I was able to push forward because my answers were so clear. Because of my vision and years of hard work, I can now walk using a walker and live independently. I have done what doctors told me I would never do again.
Discovering Your Why to Crush Your Goals
So I ask you: What is your vision? How do you see yourself in the future? What goals do you want to achieve? How will it feel when you achieve them? How badly do you want them?
Think about these questions seriously. Make your vision bold, ambitious, and something you deeply desire. Find something in your life you want as badly as I wanted to walk.
The pandemic was a difficult time for all of us. Moving forward, we have the opportunity to create something better. Let’s focus on growing, cultivating positive mindsets, and developing good habits. The future will always hold challenges, but how we respond to obstacles will determine our outcomes. If we have a clear vision, we can answer any why and no challenge will be too great to overcome.