It’s Time to Accept the Responsibility for Our Choices
If you’re like me, you probably did some irresponsible things when you were younger and somehow got away with them. For example, partying all night with friends and then competing in your sport the next day . At the time, it was no big deal and even fun to brag about. It seemed that we were invincible and didn’t realize that our lifestyle would eventually catch up with us. Now that we are in the aging game, those days are over! If we don’t get a full night’s sleep, or if we have one too many drinks, the next day is down right painful.
Welcome to being accountable for your actions! Unfortunately, these days, blaming others or expecting others to fix us is an epidemic. But, unless you accept the responsibility for your choices, you will never have any power over your life, and you will definitely lose many of the aging battles.
I remember going to a workshop for trainers a while back, and one of the topics was helping people to lose weight. There were several speakers, all whom professed to have the latest pill or gimmick guaranteed to shed the pounds. I remember one product where you wore a belt around your waist that contracted your abdominal muscles for you—it was like doing over 300 sit ups…………….Seriously?
Another was a pill where most of the fat that a person ate was not absorbed into the system. A popular item, except you found out that intestinal incontinence was a side effect…..in other words, the risk of pooping in your pants. Finally, a soft-spoken man stood up and announced that he didn’t have a pill or a product, but he did have something that worked. He said to have your clients stand in front of a mirror without any clothes on and then look into their own eyes and say to themselves:, “I am responsible for this and I am the only one who can fix it.”
Needless to say, he wasn’t very popular. In fact, I think a lot of the people in the audience threw their sample protein bars at him. However, his message was the best. If we want to have success in our lives, we have to be responsible for our actions. When it comes to having a vibrant fulfilled life as we age, we are the ones in charge. Doctors are helpful in dealing with diseases, but they do not make our choices… so if we screw up, it’s on us.
As an athlete, you knew that once you were in the game, the coach could only do so much. He didn’t contact the ball or make on the court or field decisions as they were happening. The only way that you could improve your game was by looking at your strengths and especially your weaknesses and making sure you addressed them. If you lost a competition, it wasn’t because of the fault of the coach, your teammates, the refs, or the conditions. If you focused on those influences, you would have never gotten good at your sport. Because then you knew that you couldn’t control outside forces. All you could control was how you played the game and your attitude.
So how can you be accountable with the aging process? First, look at the choices that got you where you are today. Look in the mirror. Take a body inventory. None of us look like we did when we were twenty, unless we’ve had so much cosmetic surgery that our belly button in now on top of our heads. Having a few wrinkles is normal along with some decrease in our physical capabilities. But, the good news is that many of the symptoms that are associated with aging are usually because our unhealthy lifestyles are catching up to us. These can include, lack of energy, aches, pains, and weight gain. If we have doctors helping us through a medical condition, we need to trust them and be responsible by following their instructions. We also need to take responsibility for seemingly simple things, like getting enough sleep, drinking enough water, eating whole foods, and getting enough exercise.
Accountability and taking responsibility is mandatory as we age. If we refuse to do so, our lives can quickly spin out of control. As a result, we end up feeling powerless and use our age as a excuse for why we can’t enjoy our lives like we used to. That’s giving up, and as you know, athletes don’t do that. We’re responsible for the choices we make. And the quality of our choices dictates the quality of our lives…….. So Choose Wisely.