As many of you know, I went through a big health and fitness transition a few years ago. I had a major illness ten years ago (burst appendix that wasn’t caught, leading to peritonitis and getting close to death) and after that, this man who had just completed the Boston Marathon three years earlier couldn’t exercise and ballooned up to 196 lbs.

Ken at his heaviest - 2006

That might not seem like much compared to other overweight people, but I’ve got a rather small frame and that’s a lot of weight on me (as you can see by the picture).  After my divorce and a lot of inner work, I managed through exercise and working with a nutritionist to lose 43 lbs., getting down to my lowest at 153 lbs.  This whole process was an issue of my taking control of my life and saying what was important and working toward that goal. I had a little set back from my illness about a year ago, and I’m about 10 lbs. over that weight, but I’m working to get that off again and get down to where I can get back into my 30″ pants.

Ken in 2009

I’m not much of a TV watcher, but one show I do like is The Biggest Loser.  While there is a lot of twists and turns to the show, that part I like about it is that people are facing the things that have been keeping them back, making good choices for themselves, and working consistently to make improvements to their lives.  It’s sometimes hard to watch, but it shows it’s not easy.

Last night on the show, one contestant, Arthur, who topped out at approximately 645 lbs., was voted off the show.  It was a very emotional time, as everyone there knew that he really needed to be there to help him live, but Arthur had also made a lot of bad decisions and had really upset a lot of people.  As Bob Harper posted today on his blog, Arthur made a lot of decisions out of fear, and usually those weren’t good decisions for him overall.

I see with my clients that many times people make a lot of bad decisions in their careers because they come out of a position of fear. What if another job doesn’t come up?, I should take this job because the economy is bad., I’ll never get a good job with my experience., etc.  Granted, I’m a firm believer in reality, and understand that you sometimes have to make compromises in your life, but what I’ve found many people do is shy away completely from the possibilities when it gets rough.  You have to know what you are facing, but that doesn’t mean you can’t move forward.  If you know what you want and know what you need to do to get it, then all you have to do is follow your plan and take the action steps to do it.  This is living out of personal power instead of fear.  I think many people would have much happier lives if they worked this way.

So, as Martin Luther King Jr. said, what happens to a dream deferred, and what are you doing to take control of your dreams?

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