Have you ever seen the TED Talk with Simon Sinek where he talks about the importance of knowing your “WHY?” He connects it to business and inspirational leaders, but the same idea applies to yourself and your health and wellness goals.
Because when you know why you do something, you can focus on that and use it as motivation. Especially when it comes to living healthier.
I think this is such an important step—and should be your first step!—when you’re trying to live healthier. If your goal is to eat more veggies, or lose weight, or start working out, or begin a meditation practice, or cut out processed food—whatever your health goal—first dig into why you have those goals or intentions.
For me, my initial goal was to lose the weight I gained after having my second daughter when I began my health journey. (You can read more about that HERE.) I chose to do that through creating a workout routine and also incorporating more whole, real foods into my meals.
I started doing workouts in my living room during my girls’ nap time. I added tons of new veggies into our dinners. And then I met my goal. I lost the weight. But then what?
I had to find new motivation. I had to dig deep to find my real, core WHY.
Now I know my real WHY and think of it often. Morning workouts have become part of my morning routine. Eating whole, real, colorful foods have become the norm in our house. And knowing my why is how I got here.
My two WHYs are: to live a long, healthy life with my family and feel good. Before I talk about my WHYs, I want to share how I uncovered them because it will help if you’re trying to find your WHY.
How To Find Your Core WHY
If you’re trying to figure out why you want to live healthier, here are some questions to ask yourself:
- Why do I want to ___(insert your goal here)___________? (I.e. lose weight, eat more veggies, drink more water, start meditating, cut out processed food, start working out, etc.)
- What does feeling good look like to me? Why do I want to feel good?
- When do I feel my best? What energizes me?
- When do I feel healthy? What does healthy living look like to me?
- Why do I want to live a healthy life?
- Who or what motivates me to live healthier?
Continue to ask yourself WHY and dig deeper into your answers until you find your core WHY—the WHY that will motivate you to live healthy even after you’ve lost the weight, or reached your milestone goal.
How I Found My Core WHY
For example, here’s how my thought process went to uncovering my core WHY:
The first WHY: (This was the WHY that first motivated me on my health journey.) I want to start working out and eat healthy to lose the postpartum weight.
Why do I want to lose the postpartum weight? I want to fit into my clothes again, get back to my pre-pregnancy weight, feel good about my body and live a long and healthy life. It’s not really about the size of my clothes or the weight on the scale. It’s that I feel more confident when my clothes fit and I feel good about my body. That confidence spills into other areas of my life.
Why do I want to live a long and healthy life? (This is where I really found my core WHY and what truly motivates me to this day to focus on my holistic wellness.) I want to be around and healthy to watch my girls grow up, get married, have their own kids. I want to give myself the best possible chance for living a long and healthy life. I lost my mom to cancer 8 years ago and so I know that living to see grandkids and living a long healthy life is not guaranteed. Losing my mom was the hardest thing I ever went through, and I know that by taking care of my body and health, I can decrease my chances of ever being diagnosed with cancer, which is something that terrifies me.
I also know that when I eat meals full of colorful fruits and veggies, whole grains, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds and drink lots of water, that’s when I feel my best. I have energy, I feel inspired and creative, I sleep better, all the good feelings! 🙂
At the very core of why I chose to move my body regularly and eat whole, real, colorful and nutritious food is to feel good and my best and to live a long and healthy life. That’s what I think of often when I feel unmotivated or in need of a reset back to focus on my wellness.
Knowing your core WHY can be a total game changer when it comes to healthy living. It’s the foundation for building a healthy, happy life and you can build on daily habits and routines that help you live out your WHY.