Consistency is the key. I'm sure that you have heard this said before but the more I learn about successful people the more that I learn how important it is. What separates a person who has average results from a person who has amazing results is one thing-consistency. I want to show you why consistency is so important and give you a few tips on how to be more consistent in your life.
Consistency is one of those things that people acknowledge is important but I don’t think they really understand it is literally the key to success. Successful people are consistent and people who fail are not. It is that simple. Many times when we fail to achieve something we try to blame our circumstances. Let's take the gym for example. Typical reasons that people tell me that they have not been successful is that they are too busy, the program doesn't work, they are too old, or a host of other excuses. If you really dig into the excuse then you will find, at the heart of it, that the reason for failure was that they weren't consistent enough. They didn't come to the gym enough times. They weren't tracking their food consistently enough. They didn't give enough effort when they were in the gym. Success is hard. There is no getting around it. I believe that people will look at successful people and want to say that they were successful because they were lucky, or had good genetics, or don't have as busy of a schedule, or fill in the blank. When in reality the successful just worked harder for longer. Period. The road to success, no matter the pursuit, is paved with hours upon hours of consistent work. There is no other path.
The easiest person to lie to is yourself. We can trick ourselves so easily. We can convince ourselves that we have trained more times in a month than we really have. We can trick ourselves into thinking that we have been more strict on our diet than we really have. It never fails that, when I ask someone who has not been having the results that they think they should how often they have been to the gym or tracked their food, that they overestimate. They think they have been to the gym more times in a month than they have. They think they have tracked their food more often than they have. When someone tells me this the first thing I look is at their attendance history. It never fails that they haven't been more than 2 or 3 times a week on average. They will remember the two weeks in the last three months that they went to the gym five times, but they will forget the five weeks when they only went twice. The same principle applies to diet. I will ask someone to track their food for two weeks and then let me look at it. At the end of the two weeks I will ask them how consistent they were with tracking and they will say very good. Then I will scroll through their fitness pal and see five missing days in two weeks. They always have an excuse for those missed days (well I was off those days but I'm back on track now) but the fact of the matter is that what is missing is the consistency. Show me someone who is not having the results that they want and I will show you someone who is missing consistency.
So how do we get more consistent? There is only one way to do it and that is to develop a habit. You have to do it over and over until you have developed the habit so that you don't think about it. The body is an amazing thing and it will make it easy for you to do what you do over and over. It is easy for someone who has been going to the gym five days a week for a year to go to the gym. It is harder for them to not to go to the gym because they have developed the habit. The hardest part is developing the habit. So how do we develop the habit? It takes at least 28 days to develop a habit. That means that for four weeks you need to be on point. You need to schedule out what days you will go to the gym for four weeks and have someone hold you accountable. You need to track your food for four weeks straight without missing a day and have someone hold you accountable. These first four weeks will be the hardest. Once you get past the first four weeks it will be much easier. That's why I encourage you to find someone, either a coach or a friend, who will hold you accountable and call you out if you don't show up for the class that you said you would go to or don't put in that Saturday night cheat meal into My Fitness Pal because it was a cheat meal. Whatever you can do to develop the habit you need to do. You will never have the consistency that you need to have until you develop the habit. If you could do it by yourself you would already be doing it. You need help.
I know how frustrating it can be to not achieve what you want to achieve. I can look back on every time that I did not achieve what I wanted to achieve and trace it to one thing. Consistency. I wasn't consistent enough in a certain area of my life to achieve the results that I wanted. I used to blame my circumstances for my failures, but now I have become introspective enough to realize that it wasn't my circumstances, it was my consistency. Now if there is something I want to achieve I figure out what I need to do every day and figure out a way to make it a habit. It is hard developing the habit at first but once I do it is easy. After a few months I am amazed by how much progress I have made in that given area. It really is that simple. Consistent work over time develops amazing things. All it takes is putting in the work. Every. Single. Day.
I hope I have showed you how important consistency is. The only thing separating you from the results of your dreams is constant daily work. If you show up every single day and work toward your goal you will get there. It is only a matter of time. Use the power of habit to your advantage. I promise you that if you do you will look up in a year and be amazed at how far you have come.