I had a meeting today with a young man who contacted me about possibly becoming a client of mine. In his mid-30s, “Tom” (not his real name), is experiencing some signs of aging. He is a bit overweight, often feels fatigued, and suffers from some intestinal issues. Tom doesn’t have a serious or chronic health condition; he just needs to modify a few of his habits and learn how to prepare more of his own meals.
About five minutes in to our conversation, Tom felt compelled to announce to me that he is “not about to give up meat,” to which he added “I like my steak too much.” It seemed odd to me because we were merely getting acquainted and weren’t talking about his diet yet.
A few minutes later—when we were discussing diet—Tom told me (three times) me how hard it was for him to eat right because he had no time to prepare meals. He described his work schedule, spoke of his social obligations and mentioned a host of other interests. When I asked him what he felt was a reasonable amount of time per week to spend on food preparation, he couldn’t come up with an answer.
Tom isn’t all that unusual. Most of us have foods we love—sometimes to the point of addiction—things like coffee, soda pop, convenience foods or alcohol. Many of us have harried schedules and busy lives, and we’ve become accustomed to getting our food on demand, with little or no effort required on our parts.
At the end of our meeting, Tom told me he did want to become a client. He said he wants to work with me “because I know some of your other clients and they’re having success.” Tom has a good chance to be successful too. He’s bright and learns things quickly and I believe he understands how essential good health is to having a good life. But there is one issue Tom is going to have to come to terms with: what is he willing to change?
One of my favorite quotes—and it’s said in various ways—is:
If you keep doing what you’re doing,
you’ll keep getting what you’re getting.”
I’m hoping that Tom can embrace the wisdom in those words. My bet is that he can…what do you think?