Practice Makes ________.

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Practice makes……

Most of the time after this phrase comes the word perfect, but let’s talk about that word for a minute. Perfect by definition is “having all the required elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be”. Another definition would read, “free from any flaw or defect in condition or quality; faultless.”. I don’t know about you, but to me that sounds like a load of pressure, an unattainable state of being that can’t be achieved by anyone. We are not built to be perfect, it is literally woven into our very being that we will fall short, we will fail, we will let people(including ourselves) down. The only one who is perfect is Jesus, and he died so we don’t have to be perfect, saving us from our sins and allowing us to be loved in spite of our imperfections, our flaws or our shortcomings. This is great news! When you take away the idea that it is even a possible thing to be perfect, BOOM pressure gone! Now that this impossible idea of perfection is out of the way, let’s re-coin this phrase:

Practice makes….GROWTH

Throughout my life, I have been a perfectionist of sorts, an all or nothing person. If I can’t be perfect or the best at something, I don’t want to do anything at all. Not a great attitude to have, but that’s just built into my DNA, it’s who I am. So as I’ve been on this journey of whole health over the last 3-4 years I have struggled with either being ALL IN or being ALL OUT. This has led to a feeling I can only equate to an out of control roller coaster. Sometimes it’s smooth sailing, feeling like I’m doing everything “perfectly”, then out of nowhere, a huge drop or sharp turn, making me lose direction. Then there are those times where things are pretty smooth, but I can feel the bumps in the tracks that I know are leading to another unexpected drop. The whole time I’m on this roller coaster, just praying for that smooth sailing, that “perfection”... without realizing that the straight track I’m chasing will always, most definitely, lead to the drop.

This journey for me has not been an easy one. I have had a journey of huge weight loss, huge strength gains, discovering what I was made to do(helping people find whole health), overall GREAT SUCCESS. But what has unexpectedly come with that success is pressure. Now don’t get me wrong, this is solely self-inflicted pressure, but pressure nonetheless. Pressure to be PERFECT at health, PERFECT at balance, have the PERFECT body, PERFECT life, PERFECT______(fill in the blank), and it wasn’t until this year, through having a knee surgery that has kept me down for months and gaining some weight because of falling into a dark place leading to old habits, that I am finally letting go of all the pressure. I am practicing GROWING in my health, practicing GROWING in loving myself in my imperfection, practicing GROWING in my spiritual life… and this has led to some realizations that I wanted to share with you.

If you’ve talked with me recently about health, whether it’s nutrition, fitness or spiritual health, you have likely heard me use this idea of practice. It is a general known fact that the more you practice something, the better you get at it. This applies to our health as well. You want to establish better eating habits? Practice. Achieve more balance? Practice. Get stronger or faster? Practice! Want to feel spiritually whole or achieve personal growth? Ok, you get it. We need to throw this idea of perfection out the window and focus on growth through practice.

Some practical ways to do this:

  • Nutrition your struggle? Practice making a fresh new choice at every meal. The more you practice fueling your body well, the more healthy habits will form. Luckily you get the opportunity to practice this one 5-6 times a day!
  • Struggle with committing to an exercise routine? Practice re-committing every single day. Repeat your “whys” and put them to use in your motivation to practice.
  • Have a hard time finding the mythical unicorn that is balance? Use the tools above and practice saying yes to your “worth it’s”(whether it’s food or how you choose to spend your time), and saying no to your “not worth it’s”.
  • Want to grow spiritually or mentally? Practice planning time into your day to read, have coffee with someone you admire or find a mentor and take what you learn and put that into practice in your daily life.
  • Gotten too far away from the things that make you generally feel better and feel like it’s a huge leap to get back to feeling good? Re-commit and reset. Practice those healthy habits again, each day, each hour until they become reality again.

YOU DON’T HAVE TO BE PERFECT AT ANY OF THESE THINGS TO BE THE HEALTHIEST, HAPPIEST VERSION OF YOURSELF. All you need is the guts to step out in faith and practice moving toward YOUR whole health, I know I continue to practice this every single day. With practice comes growth, and with growth comes limitless potential to be the healthiest, happiest versions of ourselves. So here’s to a new year of PRACTICE makes GROWTH.

By Jamie Griswold

Jamie is our Training Director