Good morning! Today, I wanted to make my post about less than ideal situations and the what-the-hell effect. You all know that I eat a healthy plant-based diet maybe 97% of the time, and I have also been eating gluten-free for better diegestion.
But what happens when you have health and fitness goals in less than ideal situations? What if you didn’t plan properly and ran out of food and then needed to start an exciting weekend project so you couldn’t go to the shops? And once you could it was a statutory holiday and nothing was open?
Do you throw in the towel and eat a bag of Doritos or a takeaway doughnut for breakfast?
I think often health and fitness goals are the first to suffer when people are in situations that challenge them (including myself in the past). They become susceptible to guilt and unpleasant feelings that they’d rather not deal with and finally fall victim to the “what-the-hell” effect, wherein they throw in the towel and engage in counterproductive or destructive (at worst) behaviour.
The what-the-hell effect, aptly named, is essentially thinking I already messed up, might as well mess up some more.
But I think it doesn’t have to be so if we change our mind and include failure as part of the course of our success. That way the “road” of success is wide enough that it allows for eggs for breakfast, for example, on a day when there’s no fruit, veggies, or protein powder, but not for doughnuts, Dorito chips or ice cream for breakfast.
When we change our definition of success to include a little of something other than the perfect ideal, we can still make rational, moderate decisions, unburdened by any guilt, regret or negative feelings.
This post is not about the person who truly has not made a commitment to their health or values in that regard. That comes first. It’s for the person who is just facing a day where not everything is as great as it could be.
What do you think about this? How do you usually handle tiny hurdles?