Finding your Why will lead to lasting lifestyle changes
Whenever you want to make a change in your life, after deciding what that change is and developing a plan, you need to work on your Why. Setting goals to make positive changes in your life is important. A goal is where you want to be at a specific point in time in the future. Goals need to be backed up by a good plan that measures your success so that you can make adjustments along the way.
Having a goal and a plan to get there is not enough. You still need to think about your Why. Your Why is the reason(s) for wanting to achieve the goal. Your Why is the underlying purpose behind your goal and is what is driving you to make it. When times get tough your Why will remind you of the reasons and will pull you through. Your Why is tied to a deep seated belief or emotion at your core or someone you really care about.
Let’s look at an example. I want to lose weight. Great, but let’s narrow that down and be specific. I want to lose 25 pounds by June 15th. That means I’ll have to lose approximately 4.25 pounds per month or just over a pound per week for the next six months. Perfect. What is your Why?
The reason I want to loose weight is to have my clothes fit better and feel healthier. Good enough? Maybe. Can we dig a bit deeper? Why do I want to have my clothes fit better? I don’t want to go shopping for bigger clothes. Why? Because I don’t want to admin to my wife that my clothes don’t fit. I already don’t feel good about myself and further embarrassment won’t help. If I can lose weight I will avoid the embarrassment of asking for new clothes plus I will feel better about my self and be more confident.
Let’s drill down on feeling healthier. Why do I want to feel healthier? Well, my kids can run circles around me. I am sluggish and slow. If I get healthier I can be more active with them. If I am healthier, I won’t fall into obesity and heart disease like the rest of my family is experiencing. Their quality of life is bad and I don’t want to live like that.
Do you see what we’ve done? We kept asking Why until we got to the core of the reasons. Most reasons can be drilled down until you strike that nerve! You need to discover your Why or Whys, otherwise you won’t feel like pulling out of the dip that comes when you’re ready to give up.
Let’s look at a Why as it relates to breaking free from addiction to pornography. I want to be free from pornography because it will ruin my marriage. If my marriage is ruined, I will be lonely and will miss my kids deeply. I can’t imagine being that alone and having my heart ache because I chose looking at naked women on the internet over my kids and wife. I don’t want to break her heart and my kids hearts by having to leave them.
I also want to be free from pornography because it angers God. It makes me feel guilty and destroys our relationship. In 1 Corinthians 6:9 got says adulterers won’t inherit the kingdom. I certainly don’t want to risk my salvation over some temporary fleshly pleasures.
Every time I get tempted to look at pornography, I stop and ask myself; Is this ten minutes of pleasure really worth destroying my family and having my heart and my kids hearts broken? Is it really wise to exchange some video of a woman I don’t know for an eternity away from God? Can I hurt the feelings of a God who has given me so much?
When I see the sadness on my children’s faces and when I feel the loneliness of living without my family, I know the my Why. When I feel the shame and guilt and see the disappointment of my heavenly father or picture myself at the gates of heaven being turned away, I know my Why.
Your Why will hit the core of your beliefs, the things you love and cherish, and your self worth. Your Why will ring true with who you are and who you want to be. When you feel that emotion associated with your why, you know you have found it.
Now go and find your Whys for the things your want to change in your life!