By Mohan Karulkar: iceberg-lettuce[1]Every year I have to undergo a health screening for my health insurance.  It's basic stuff -- blood pressure, cholesterol, tobacco use, and weight.  The only thing that ever gives me trouble is weight -- or specifically Body Mass Index.  I'm short, and the BMI scale is hopelessly unfair at the low extreme, so every year I'm caught scrambling to drop weight so I can pass my screening.

I've been putting weight on for years.  My once-strict eating habits have devolved into whatever manages to fit between my day job and my family life.  I have no self control with sweets, and eat carbs like I'm running a marathon.  (I'm not.)

So yeah, I'm not without fault.  And in fact I'm on a mission to fix my diet, and have cut way back on the sugar and carbs.  I feel trimmer, for what that's worth.  But if anything real is happening, it's happening slowly.

When I was younger, I could lose 10 pounds in a summer by hitting the gym more, but somewhere along the line something changed.  My body, my lifestyle, my priorities, my preferences.  It's so easy to fall into a rut, and so hard to figure out how to get back to where you once where.

Second chances are just like that.  Patterns in our lives become written in stone, and things we wish we could fix seem impossible.  We doubt ourselves, and give up on change.  Harmful and abusive relationships with people, food, drugs, and thoughts take over our lives, and we settle on a new normal.

And the truth is, the longer you're in the rut, the harder it is to get out.  But just because the change is slow doesn't make the decision to change any less right.  

So, let's have a little exercise.

  1. Identify one deep "rut" that you're stuck in, and imagine what freedom would taste like.
  2. Commit to one small tangible thing you can change TODAY that will get you out of the rut ONE DAY.
  3. Share your situations below, and be encouraged to seize your second chance!

Hopefully we'll all get out of some ruts together.  In the meantime, press on, and I'll keep wrapping everything I eat in lettuce.