There is such a thing as too much ‘personal growth’, says Sunipa Herbert
I stand in front of the mirror and look at myself. Who is this woman staring back at me? She looks familiar. She looks very familiar. I gasp as the image staring back at me is ME! A rude awakening as my morning alarm of Buddhist bells ushers me into a new day. “Wakey wakey,” says my chirpy husband with my morning tea cup in his hand. I was dreaming, a dream that often visits me after holidays and long weekends. Why is it that the best moments of your REM sleep is when you have to wake up?
En route to work and sitting behind the wheel I rejoice at the idea of a new day with new challenges on offer. A quick glance at the mirror and I see the woman that visited me in my dreams. A host of questions flood my mind; when, where and how did that double chin descend on my face, why do I have pouches under my eyes and when did I get that fine wrinkle around my eye? My mind wanders as I recall my resolution for 2017. Lose weight.
Ahh… lose weight. I know I am not alone in my yearly resolution to lose a few kilograms. I blame it on the Easter eggs, a few extra reds, my neighbour’s cooking aromas and the Goan ‘sorpotel’ that did the trick of tipping me over my goal weight. They say Rome was not built in a day and the good Lord knows that this Rome was built over half a century. My brain is hardwired to get all the nourishment I can, when I can and wherever I can. On this back step I decide to do something radical. I set my KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) in the pursuit of my goal.
My S-M-A-R-T Goals
Be Specific: Okay I need to lose 2 kilograms. This means I will have to eat like Twiggy at Nina’s engagement party, politely decline the margarita at Rob’s beach house and cancel the girl’s outing to Poori’s restaurant. Is it worth the sacrifice?
Measurable: Stand on the scales every morning much against professional advice of weighing more than once a week. I toyed with the idea of blaming the uneven floor or the battery in the weighing scale for my ever increasing weight, a matter for discussion at a later date.
Attainable: Every goal is attainable. It is all in the mind. If you want to climb a mountain you should envisage it in your mind’s eye. I shut my eyes and waded through a mountain of food and see the new me, slim and gorgeous. Opening my eyes I thought it could backfire and I could be sitting at the foothill of the mountain all my life. How discouraging.
Relevant: Absolutely! Show me a female who does not want to lose some weight and I will book you a ticket to the moon. I am sure the weightless feeling on the moon will do wonders to my KPI.
Time-bound: This needs to happen by the end of May 2017… or maybe end of May 2018.
Having set my parameters I feel alive and raring to go. My hand finds its way into the glove compartment of the car and I grab a handful of M&M peanuts to celebrate my paper victory. You are not cheating if no one is looking, I tell myself.
I get to work and the smell of coffee wafts into my office. Putting my calls on hold I dash into the kitchen and battle the hi-tech machine for a cup of freshly ground coffee. All revved up, I begin my day. After two hours of staring at my computer I jump to my feet on cue as my Gear watch reprimands me that I not burnt a single calorie. I punch my calorie intake into the Health application and salivate about what will be on the plate for morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and after dinner snack. I decide to look at the calorie intake at the end of the day and it shows 5,500 Kcal. Having initially signed up for 2,000 Kcal, the word “indulgence overboard” flashes like a neon sign on a dark gloomy day.
Why and what am I measuring with my KPIs? There is no accountability, no bonus, no mentors to remind me that I am aiming for the stars and I could land with a thud on my well cushioned derrière. What about personal growth and development? Yes, it all comes down to personal growth and I am well on my way there. Somebody stop me. I am S-M-A-R-T and need a personal trainer right now!