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Knowing and Doing

Hello again, and how the heck are you?!? Things have been good for me in Boston this winter. At the same time, to be totally honest with you, I struggle sometimes. I once had a coach who advised me to never admit that I was struggling ...!? To give her the benefit of the doubt, I think she meant not to dwell on it or expect it. If I noticed it, I was to push it out of my mindset and move on. Often easier said than done. Consequently, I've usually not admitted to anyone that I might be having a hard time. I can see the value in pivoting and looking for something better on which to focus. I do that on the regular. I can also recognize how confronting with whatever I'm having a hard time helps me be upfront and truthful both with myself and you! That, in turn, helps me move forward with solutions.

What kinds of things do I grapple with? Lately it's been mostly self-care. Primarily addressing what and how I'm eating and how much I'm exercising, stretching, or doing strength training. As I pondered my own short-comings, as a short Cummings (lol - sorry, I couldn't resist), I was thinking about the "advice" I give out. I'm a coach, mentor, and teacher -- Jon Kabat-Zinn talks about our "karmic assignment" in life and I've decided I'm just meant to be always researching and passing along what I can to help others live their most healthy life. I used to think my mission was to inform and educate people. I thought I was supposed to always have the latest information and to be a source of whatever was new in the wellness world. More and more, I'm realizing that most people already have the information -- they're just not using it. The reason I've come to this conclusion is through observation and also because it's exactly my problem much of the time!

I was recently listening to a webinar by Kris Carr ( and my ears perked up when I heard her say, "Common knowledge isn't common practice!". Wow, that was an aha moment for me. I totally agree with it and I've experienced it. The issue with fixing a problem or situation is acknowledging what we already know and then, doing something about it. 

So many times, when I make a suggestion to a client, potential or actual, I hear, "Oh, I know that" and it's followed up by a list of excuses for not doing whatever needs to be done! I've been there myself and it's not pretty. I sometimes think we like to argue for our limitations. It doesn't help us feel or get better. 

Here's what I suggest ... notice when you find yourself going around and around a specific problem. Maybe write it down and then, ask yourself, "What can I do about this?" You may not have all the answers, but I bet you'll have a few. After you list some ideas, start to explore what might be holding you back from following through. If you have a good friend with whom you can toss this around, consult with them and see what ideas they might have. 

Remember, you have to be aware and acknowledge that you probably already know what to do in most situations. Now it's up to you to take action. As always, be care-full.

If you need someone to help you get over the hump of being stuck between knowing and doing, contact me. I do a lot of short-term, easy coaching. 

Happy Healthy Habit Hump Day,


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About the Author




Barbara L Cummings, MS, RN

is a sassy Queen-ager whose mission is to co-create a happier, healthier life with and for others.

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