“It’s not this or this, it’s the actual that.”
While I was not directly involved in the discussion, when I overheard this comment, I found it quite funny.
For context, the group was troubleshooting a piece of equipment and trying to figure out which part was causing the problem. The speaker knew what the problem was but she couldn’t remember what it was called. I’ve been there. Have you?
Things we know the answer to briefly get forgotten. I DO know the names of my children but when rushing, any version of their mixed-up names could be spoken. I think every child (including me) has experienced being called by hibrid names.
Perhaps worse is when we know very well what the answer is, but we simply disregard it. There have been many memes and jokes about weight gain during COVID-19. Gyms closed just when Easter candy (and my favorite – Reeses’ Peanut Butter Eggs) filled the store shelves. Truth be told, my slide into regaining weight after working so hard to lose it began before the pandemic. It just became easier to justify overeating and having special treats like candy more often because of anxiety…and the gym is closed anyway.
At some point, we (and by we, I do mean I am included) will have to troubleshoot to discover and fix the problem.
Now, this is an area where the answer is simple and hard at the same time. The simple answer is to eat less and move more. But that is hard so we search for simpler solutions. We shop for a magic pill, supplement, drink, or diet food that will melt the weight. There is no end to wacky diets touted as “the answer.” We research exercise routines that only take 5 minutes but promise miracle solutions (“results not typical”). Or maybe the answer lies in a variety of machines or techniques designed to melt the weight (“But wait, you can double your offer just by paying extra S&H”).
Here is where my friend was so smart. “It’s not this, or this, it’s the actual that.” It really does come down to eating less and moving more. Boring, but true. There are many sensible diets and a variety of exercise plans. So, choose the one that fits your lifestyle, health, and budget.
When it comes down to the most basic “this or that” decision, a phrase I heard from Pamela Waldrop Shaw at a conference really hit home. While addressing goal-setting, her comment was “What do I want? What do I want more?” It doesn’t have to be health and fitness, this works for any goal including getting a degree for a better job, saving more money, etc.
But for me, do I want to get fit and healthy more than I want the Reeses? If so, I must do the hard work. It’s not “this” miracle supplement or “this” technique, but it’s the “actual that” of a healthy diet and active lifestyle that will do it. I choose “the actual that.”
What goal do you have? What do you want? What do you want more?