Knowing Your “Why”

In the first couple weeks of the Body Revolution workout by Jillian Michaels, she repeatedly asks the audience if they know their “why.”  The reason, she explains, is that if you don’t know your why, the “how” becomes unbearable.

I’ve come to realize that the impact “why” has on “how” is not just related to health & fitness or diet & exercise. Our Tool for this week’s Toolbox is the “why.”  Knowing why is what gives us the courage to bust out of our comfort zones.  Otherwise, what’s the point, right? There’s got to be a reason!

I’ve put some lofty goals out there for myself to accomplish in the second half of my century on this Earth.  Things like running a marathon, playing piano professionally and writing music, publishing a novel, and becoming a yoga instructor are on my list.

In order to accomplish my goals, I have a lot of work to do to train, practice, prepare and learn.  My “why” is the motivator that gets me out of bed in the morning and at the keyboard or the sneakers on and out on the road.  Otherwise, getting out of bed 2 hours earlier would be literally unbearable!

Let’s dig deeper into “why.”  Just because I want to, isn’t enough.

Before I could read or write, there were two things I wanted more than anything –  to play the and to write a book.  I figured out how to do both (well sorta) before I started preschool.  My passions were clear and I knew my calling before I knew my ABC’s.

Running and yoga arrived a little later.  Still in my teens, my passions were clear.  I was the fastest runner on my junior high track team and yoga provided me with a stillness, peace and tranquility I found nowhere else.

Then, I grew up and got married.  I adopted a career and a bunch of dogs.  All passions of my life but all these years later there’s still something yet unfinished, something that still smolders deep inside, waiting.  I let the demands of the day job and routines of daily living take over my world, and I regret none of it. However, over the years whenever I’d encounter a fresh new author or musician, my soul would pinch a little from the inside – just to let me know that there’s still time and still room in this life.  Runners jog passed my dogs and I nearly every day and I recall the bliss that comes from a great run or yoga practice. I missed it, dearly.  And there was no reason why I can’t have it again, right?

My “why” is not about reclaiming my youth.  It’s about restoring my passion for living and making it a priority again.  My passions don’t live in my career anymore or what to fix for dinner.  My passions are pushing me out there, out of my comfort zone, to see what else is possible.

To paraphrase another Jillian Michaels’ quote, nobody said this was going to be easy, but it’s doable.  And, as long as I have my “why,” I’m doing it!

What’s your “why?”


About Lora Bailey

Pianist, runner, author, yogi, wife and dog-mommy
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