A big part of making lasting changes in your life is finding the reasons that you are making changes in the first place. Oftentimes when setting goals for ourselves like losing weight or gaining more energy, we come up with superficial reasons why we want these things. Maybe its because you want to look good in a swimsuit or that you want to be a morning person, but these reasons only go skin deep and when the motivation wares off you might find yourself back at square one. Our “why” should be something that truly means something to us to be effective. Here are three questions you can ask yourself that will help you to dig deep and find the real reason you’ve got this goal in the first place:

1. Ask Why Five Times

You want to lose weight. You want more energy. You want to turn heads at that wedding you’re attending next year.

Why? Why is this important to you? What will this do for you in your life?

If you want to know the answer, you’re going to need to dig down deep and learn about what really matters to you!

Try this exercise:

Write down this sentence five times “I want to _____ because _____.” Insert your reason in the first space and then repeat it five times creating a ripple effect. For example:

• I want more energy because I want to be more productive at work.
• I want to be more productive at work because it’s important to provide for my family.
• I want to provide for my family because being a great parent is rewarding.
• I want to be an amazing parent because I believe it’s part of leading a good life.

You can see that obtaining more energy is more than just being productive at work. It’s about providing for your family, being a great parent, and ultimately living a fulfilling life. When you are working towards something greater, you are more likely to keep a commitment. You may not always wake up feeling super motivated to get out and take a walk that day or make it to the gym. That’s ok. But when you have a purpose for that walk or making it to that class, it makes a huge difference.

2. What excites you? What gets you out of bed in the morning?

Ask yourself these questions and build your life around it. If you’re excited about what you’re doing, you will most likely consistently do it! Excitement is contagious and can lead you to other hobbies and interests. Find a way to incorporate your interests into something productive. Instead of focusing on what you should do, ask yourself what you want to do. What is your version of fun and how will it bring joy to your life?

3. Who do you want to be?

Don’t just ask yourself what you want to do. Also ask yourself who you want to become. Reaching your goals feels fantastic, but it is who we become in the process of reaching the goal that makes the results long-lasting. Our actions along the journey mold us into the person we strive to be! Goal-oriented actions teach us to become self-disciplined, dedicated, and determined.

Incorporating health and fitness into your life is about more than hitting the gym or making it to class (although these are huge steps in the right direction)! It is about finding your reason for wanting to live a longer, better, and more fulfilled life. It’s about valuing yourself, your body, and those you choose to share your life with. So take a moment to check in with yourself and ask “who do I want to be and how can I get there?”.