You know those moments when you’ve gobbled up an entire pizza and you mutter, with sauce still dribbling down your lips, “I shoulda ate only one slice?” But you didn’t, and the regret of bygone decisions only further undermines your drive to achieve your health goals. Here’s how you can pick yourself up, stop worrying about what you should have done, and focus on what you can do.
Photo by jerryonlife.
Jack Coulson, a fitness coach from Strongfident, refers to this after-the-fact remorse as the “should game.” Thoughts like, “I should have gone to the gym instead of going to happy hour with coworkers” or “I should have gone to bed earlier instead of playing more League of Legends.” The “should game” places people in a mindset that robs them of power and accountability over their actions. Instead, play the “can game” to shift from a negative mindset to a positive one.
The “can game” puts you in a position to continue making progress, yet not be down on yourself when you slip. He explains:
It will take time to develop this level of self-awareness and you have to realise that you will sometimes make “bad” choices. Put better, you won’t always make choices that are in line with your goals. That’s ok. Accept it. It’s part of being human.
Remember: When you focus on what you “should” have done, you lose focus on what you “can” currently do to make the situation better. Focusing on what you CAN do is the most important game you can play.
This can easily apply to many of life’s situations beyond health and fitness, but Jack does note that this may not work all the time. Head over to Strongfident for examples on the “can game” in action.
Shoulda Woulda Coulda [Strongfident]