The 70%

22 Aug

‎”Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” – Arthur Ashe

I’ve been seeing this quote out in the blogosphere a lot lately.  It’s a quote I particularly relate to.  It makes a nice mantra for the kind of year I’m having. The truth is those Nike advert style “thinspiration” slogans, the ‘Be Your Best’ and ‘Stay Extraordinary’ soundbites are a bit lost on me, really. Lots of people seem to find them very powerful, but perhaps because I am not (yet?) tapped into what it takes to be A Person Who Wants To Exercise, they don’t speak to me.  

Casa&Co. – Etsy

This quote from Mr.Ashe reminds me of something my acupuncturist told me yesterday.  {Note that I say “my acupuncturist” like she is somehow mine or that we’ve been going steady for a while. It was only my first session!} She told me that in a philosophy class she took , the professor discussed how in Western thought we’re all about 100% i.e. giving it all you’ve got and nothing less, encouraging children to be their best etc. which a lot of people do respond to. For many of us though, this ‘100%’ way of thinking only sets us up for disappointment and relapse.  Her professor noted that in Eastern thought, it’s about the 70%.  If you’re seeking alternative therapy for your illness, for example, make it a 70 (alternative)-30 (conventional medicine) balance.  If you plan on changing your lifestyle, try aiming for 70% all-out effort in the areas you want to change, leaving room for tipping off the wagon and the inevitable moments of ‘I just can’t’. 

This makes sense to me.  I’m not good at 100%. My inner rebel kicks off and I end up doing far less than I could have, because 100% seems so far off.  For example, I want to cut out dairy from my diet, completely. At the moment, my best chance at success is aiming for the 70% – cutting out milk and cheese right now. A long-term goal is to go the remaining 30% and take out yoghurts, ice-cream, milk chocolate etc. further down the road.

The idea of 100% is daunting, but 70% I can actually imagine doing. It gives me a realistic handle on what I can achieve.

Just a thought for the day… 

When My Time Comes – Dawes and Mumford and Sons (yes! together!)


Please leave a reply! Thanks - Dannii x

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