I just happened upon this app called PACT. It is an app that helps to set goals for working out and eating healthy. The premise is that once you set daily goals, you either receive cash rewards, or if you do not meet your goals then money is deducted from your credit card or PayPal account and given to those that do meet their goals. GULP.
Mind you, I am a bit hard-core on myself with running, being active, and eating healthy. I currently have a Nike FuelBand and find that it often encourages me to keep up with my daily fuel goal, which is accrued with the miles I run. There are times when I come home from work exhausted and could care less if I make my goal, and all I want is comfort food. Yet, that is the exception. For the most part, I come home and unwind from my day with a good, hard run and healthy meal. The question is how many days of the week end up that way, and how many days do I successfully hit my goal? It is so different from week to week.
The other aspect of the app pertains to food. You can track your food goals and then take pictures of what you eat. There is a bit of honesty and trust that go with this app. Maybe that is why rewards start at 30 cents, because most individuals are probably not going to “cheat” to receive 30 cents. The fact that they met their goal is motivation with the added accumulation of some change to show as proof of their consistent effort. Almost like an ongoing game of penny poker.
Since life can throw us curveballs at any moment, how are our goals to be and stay healthy impacted when money is involved? Would I handle my goals differently if there was money connected to it? I guess it would depend on how much money you make or lose. Reports about the app say you can earn 30 cents to $5 a week for meeting your goal, and $5-$10 each day for when you miss your goal. Again, yikes! How many of you would start to see $35-$70 leaving your checking account each week? The money that you pay for not meeting your goals goes into the pool to help pay for those that are meeting their goals.
Would PACT motivate you to exercise and eat healthy? Or would you start to feel down that you are not hitting your goals and watching cold hard cash fly out the door? Is it motivating and would it keep you on track?
It is only nine days into the year and the thought that was going through my mind yesterday is why is it so hard for us to stick to things? We spend so much time talking about New Year’s resolutions and how we are going to keep and honor them throughout the year, and why is it such an ongoing conversation from year to year? Do we not have the self-control, resilience, and tenacity to follow through on what we say we are going to do? Do we just get bored? Or do we not set up realistic expectations that are obtainable?
I have not been able to decide. There is a part of me that is already hard on myself for letting a few things slide in the last nine days, where I think “wow, great track record so far this year.” Yet, why are we so hard on ourselves? What is the big rat race that we are running so fast in? Where is it taking us? I know I often carve out too many items on my to-do list for each day and it feels great when I am able to accomplish what I set out to do each day, but is that what really matters? If we look back from year to year, will we remember what we cross off on our to-do lists, or will we remember the hearts we touch, the conversations we have, and all the things we learn? I hope it is the latter.
While I do not want to add another thing to my list, I loved taking moments to capture the good that was happening in my life (and of course for Chris too) in 2013. I mentioned a few blog posts ago, that I want to continue doing that for 2014. It was fun to sit down on New Years and pull each item out of our jar and remember things that happened early on in the year. A few made us laugh and think, “wow, that made the jar” and I am sure there were many we missed that should have been documented. In any case, I think what I would like to track and appreciate is what I learn each day, week, month. Maybe there is nothing for weeks, and maybe there is a lot. Who knows, but I believe if we are consciously watching and we think about tracking it, we start to see those learnings show up everywhere. All because we watch for it. I think that will make for an even better 2014.
Rather than berate myself for not sticking to things completely, why not try, learn in the process, and celebrate the good that does happen? We have so little control over so many things in our little worlds, what we can control is what we witness, see, and appreciate. Are you with me?