The usual words of “wisdom” you hear are “DON’T burn any bridges.” Well, I’m calling that out as terrible advice.
Although there are some situations where keeping a “bridge” intact is a smart move, it’s also a crutch many lean on when they lack the strength to leave something behind and give an all-out commitment to the new and better thing.
It could be a bad relationship you won’t let go that hinders your ability to find a good one. It could be a part-time job you keep as ” backup ” that distracts you from the full potential of the new one. It could be an old friend that’s worth dropping because they just bring you down or stress you out. It could even be a piece of furniture you want to keep even though it clutters your house and takes away from the nicer piece you already bought. You get the point.
Well, when it comes to health and fitness, this failure to burn bridges allows people to cross back over the canyons they conquered, right back to the same poor habits and choices they had previously left. It’s unfortunate, and it tells me that they really didn’t get it or understand it at the deepest level. There was no solid conviction that said: “never again.” In effect, they didn’t burn the bridge.
Just like the aforementioned examples, there are some foods, some drinks, some behaviors that are worth leaving … for good. Burn the bridge. Don’t allow yourself a way back.
What’s that look like? First of all, get that particular food you supposedly gave up out of the house. Secondly, tell your family you are never eating it again. Furthermore, tell your friends it’s something you are permanently dropping from your diet because it simply holds you back from what you really want. Guess who will remind you of that commitment in case you forget? You better believe it – your friends and family. And is that a bad thing? Nope, not at all. Because you have left it behind, and in a moment of potential weakness, you’d rather not hear it from your friends and family than partake. That does nothing but help you, right?
Here’s another bridge to burn: those clothes that are now too big that you still have sitting in your closet. Why? In case you go back? Why even think that way? Get rid of them! You aren’t going back, right? And if for some crazy reason you do, you should incur the expense of the poor decision. You see, the more penalties you put in place for yourself going the wrong direction, the less likely you will go that way! Stop making it comfortable and easy to fail. It’s the first step of success.
What about those friends you have who, truth be told, are only your friends because you share the same desire for gluttony and sloth? Sounds intense, doesn’t it, lol? Hey, sometimes you’ve got a step back and call stuff like it is :) Would they still hang out with you if you wanted to go do something active? If not, ask yourself if their presence in your life is making you healthier or bringing you down? Harsh, huh? Seriously though, if getting in shape is important to you and every interaction with a particular someone gets you further from that goal, maybe you should 1) share your concern and make a change in your activities together or 2) burn that bridge. If they are a good friend (the kind you should have), they’ll respond to option #1 with no problem. They may even follow and appreciate your lead.
It’s much like credit card debt, right? If someone had struggled with debt for years, and FINALLY made a big leap in the right direction by paying off a certain credit card, the best idea may be to literally do some “plastic surgery” – cut that thing up! It’s a way of burning a bridge to bad behavior. If that person leaves that card open and sitting in their wallet, won’t they be more likely to fall right back into the trap they just climbed out of? The same applies to your health and fitness.
Go BURN SOME BRIDGES, so you’ll stay on the right path and keep moving forward.