Some of you may remember this short lived, but very successful PSA for the UNCF ( United Negro College Fund) back in the early 70’s….
Your Mind, A Terrible Thing To Waste, it was aimed at black youth who could have been going to college but weren’t for whatever reasons. The goal was to obviously bring awareness to the fact that we all have minds that are capable on so many levels and too often, more capable than we can understand.
Well, that is exactly how I feel as it relates to your mind and the power you possess to change your body and live in your “healthiest” body. Notice I didn’t say “perfect body”, but healthy body.
I think the first thing we need to wrap our minds around is the fact that the perfect body doesn’t exist. I’ve been in the fitness modeling game and I can tell you first hand that the girls and guys you look at and admire have serious “body dis-morphic” issues of their own, wishing they could improve this body part or a mass of cellulite that that cannot seem to eliminate.
Let’s face it, we all have work to do, but that work is much easier accomplished if we get our minds right, and that is exactly the information I’ll be brining you in a series of articles and videos to accompany the written word.
Reconciling where you are, how far you have come and more importantly, how blessed you are to even be reading this, are all things we need to come to grips with in order to move forward in our efforts to live in healthily, highly functioning bodies.
Our Western culture has given us a perverted perspective on how we approach our fitness goals. Fancy ads and beautiful models attempt to convince us that we need to look a certain way or wear certain clothes. Well, I’m here to tell you, from an insider’s perspective that is all backwards. I want you to know that you are amazing today, right where you sit, exactly how you look.
On the other hand, I can tell you from years of experience, training thousands of people that it’s YOUR MIND that is holding you back from achieving what you want from life as it relates to your body image and results. Nearly every single person that I have ever worked with over the last twenty-five years has gotten in their own way and halted results before they even gave themselves a chance to rise.
I want to give you 5 simple steps to help you eliminate any obstacle that you have placed in your path to success. We will build on these principles and I will help you either knock them down, go over or around them or accept certain things that are just plain factual that you may need to come to grips with.
You need to realize one thing before we get started on this journey together however…you hold the keys to the car and you can either trust me or not, you can choose to believe in yourself or not and you can choose to use your mind as your most valuable resource or not…because the truth is this.
The ball is in your court, it always has been and maybe it’s because you haven’t addressed the mind stuff yet that you haven’t been totally fulfilled in your fitness pursuits.
1). Love Yourself Today– There is a scripture in the Bible in Luke 16:10 that says-
“Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.”
I think this applies to our bodies to be brutally honest with you! If you cannot love yourself right now, chances are you will find things to complain about even if you lose 100 pounds. Things like “I hate this extra skin”, “I look so much older” , “I gained back 10 pounds” so on and so forth. Some of you know exactly what I am saying here because you have been guilty of it.
2). Stop Comparing Yourself To Others– My poor wife has been having to see me model with other beautiful women for our entire marriage and I cannot imagine how hard that must be. I also know that she has had many bad days because she has wasted so much time comparing herself to these “other women”. Here is the truth however; she is way hotter than all of them, no lie. That being said, she still struggles and has to “make up her mind” that she is beautiful and cannot compare herself to women half her age with no kids or any life experience.
3). Enjoy The Journey– Fitness is a lifestyle as much as most people don’t want to admit and the journey is where all the beauty is. We spend so much time either in the future in in the past that we too often overlook the beauty and accomplishments along the way. Get your mind in the “present moment” and don’t waste another day wishing to look a certain way or thinking about what you looked like in high school or when you were at your best. Go back to step one, take a deep breath and accept yourself NOW and flow with this process that you are on and I promise you it will make things way more enjoyable.
4). Don’t Obsess Over Scale Weight– The scale, in my opinion, hurts more people than it helps and I highly suggest that is the last measurement you use to assess your progress. Celebrate NSV’s- Non Scale Victories. Can a cold piece of metal and springs tell you how awesome you are, what a great spouse you are, how much you contribute to life, work, other people so and so forth? NO! So why let that determine whether or not you are progressing in your fitness journey? I’ll tell you why, because that is a conditioned behavior that you need to take control over, by using your mind, and going back to step 3 and enjoying the journey and not stressing over numbers. Who cares if you are working towards your healthiest body? Stress causes a cascade of hormonal responses (that I will address in future articles) that will only hinder your progress, so do yourself a favor and relax and go back to step one.
5). Know Your Why– Knowing WHY you want to change your body is vital to consistency, and you why must be deeper than fitting into smaller clothes or looking good for an event. You have to dig deep and uncover things that you may be hiding deep in your heart that nobody else knows. You do this by going deeper with your answers like this.
“I want to look better because…
I like how I look when I’m smaller- WHY?
Because I feel sexy- WHY do you want to feel sexy?
Because my husband notices me more when I am more confident- WHY do you think your husband doesn’t think you are sexy now?
Because I know he is more attracted to me when I feel comfortable in my own skin….
See where I am going with this?
It’s all in your mind and you must get your thoughts under control or it’s my opinion that you will never be TRULY HEALTHY, because true health is MIND and BODY!
Let me amend the PSA for UNCF
Your Mind, It’s A Terrible Thing To Waste…and So Is Your Body!!!
As a professional fitness model, Clark has appeared easily on the cover of over 130 fitness publications and is considered one of the most successful models in the industry.
As a personal trainer, Clark has helped thousands of people transform their bodies and their lives, and is an ISSA Master Trainer.
He is also the author of the how-to guide, You Too Can Be A Fitness Model, Spiritually Fit, A Fitness Program You Can Have Faith In and his most recent best selling book called Where Your Mind Goes, You Go.