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The All or Nothing Mindset Makes You Feel Like You Have to Be Perfect — You Don't

The "all or nothing" attitude is not a new concept, but it seems to have gotten even worse in the past few years. Social media probably hasn't helped, but it's not the cause.

Nowadays, being healthy and fit has become a destination rather than a journey. You scroll through social media and see all of these fit people working out daily, eating healthy, appetizing meals and they seem so much happier than you. They don't seem to struggle with overindulging on pizza and beer or have trouble turning down the birthday cake at the office. They also never seem to miss a workout and always make it look so easy.

So, what does that do to you? It often makes you believe that it's all or nothing. You believe you have to embrace fitness, wellness and healthy eating 100 percent of the time and never stray. Well, guess what? That's just not reality.

It's Extreme

Yes, some people live this way, but it's rare. The all-or-nothing mindset is actually a negative thought process and is often associated with anxiety and depression. While you may not be clinically depressed or anxious, how many times have you started a "diet," fell off the wagon, and then berated yourself for it? The truth is that habits are challenging to change and it doesn't happen overnight.

Forgive Yourself

First and foremost, you don't have to be perfect! Your journey to health and wellness may not look like anyone else's and that's just fine. This is your life and the habits you embrace to be healthier need to work with your lifestyle.

Start Small

Small steps can lead to big progress. Think about other big accomplishments: education, career, buying a home or car, or even your relationship. Each of these major life accomplishments took time and small steps. Well, health and fitness can begin the same way. Start drinking a little more water each week. Start walking the dog each day, or taking a walk at lunchtime. Begin planning a good breakfast each day and stick to it. Small steps can get you where you want to go.

Ask For Help

You also don't have to do this alone. The internet is a great tool with a lot of tips and motivation out there. It can also help you find people that you can speak with face to face and get the guidance you need. Your doctor, a dietitian, health coach, a therapist or even a personal trainer can all help you create new habits and reach your wellness goals. They can also help you find that balance of moderation rather than working towards the all or nothing mindset.

[Image via Shutterstock]

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