July 9, 2010

Bob and Weave

It's nearly the middle of July. How are your 2010 goals coming along? Are you checking things off the list? Making progress, taking steps forward? I hope so.

Just in case you've experienced some challenges like I have, this post is for you.

One of the greatest challenges I've had in the last 6 months has been learning how to stay focused on the goal and at the same time be flexible enough to adapt when its clear that this boat 'ain't gonna sail that way. Getting very fixed and even rigid in our belief about how it all is going to play out might very well be the quickest way to sink the ship.

I'm a pretty laid back person, its natural to take things as they come, and I find intrigue and adventure in the unexpected. When I worked in customer service several years back, I never knew what was on the other end of that incoming call...a happy customer, an extremely busy customer, a customer that's demanding or unreasonable...it was the funnest part of the job for me! So, you would think this whole flexibility thing would come naturally, too.


Somehow this year, this goal, seemed way too important for me to just 'que sera sera' my way through it. I felt I needed to really buckle down, make a plan, stick to it, and arrive. If it were only that simple. 

The thing is that I've seen this laid-backness of mine play to my benefit many many times, and I'm wondering if it could, if it would serve me well with my health goals also. You may not agree with me, but for me it seems the more rigid and inflexible I approach something, the better chance I'm going to get discouraged and just chuck the whole thing.

Enter the bob and weave. It's a basic and key defensive move in boxing that has some very interesting parallels for us. Take a look:

What I heard first was about head movement...so basic!! In boxing, you're trying to not get hit while delivering some swift hits of your own. If you stand still, guess what happens?  Moral? Don't get so locked into the route you're taking to get to your destination that you miss your big move. Get your head moving a little. Assess where you're at. Adjust.

We can be so set on taking the fastest route between here and there that we forget about that counter-punch or that right hook. And, before we know it, we're clinching, hanging on the ropes and going down for the count. We've forgotten about head movement.

The second thing is that in boxing, you expect to get hit. It's part of the game. When we expect something, we aren't surprised by it, we aren't discouraged by it, we know it's all a part winning. Moral? Don't let a little pop to your ego derail you from staying in the ring long enough to get the win. Keep moving, don't give up, switch it up, make it fun, don't be so hard on yourself. And, smile. :)

In other words, bob and weave. 

Sometimes your movement will be forward, sometimes backward. Even side to side. Move full speed ahead when the way is clear, but switch it up from time to time. Back off, change canoes, ask for help and learn from others.

Above all, don't be afraid to say "I've changed my mind." Who cares what others say, seriously. Pursue your goals relentlessly but know that how you get there is almost certain to change along the way.

I'm wondering....does this whole idea of bobbing and weaving make you feel kinda free? Or does it just feel to loosey goosey to you? Please leave a comment.

Movin' forward every which way,


  1. I have to say that I am not a very good "flexible" person. I am just too anal and controlling for that. But this was a great analogy! I love the whole part about expecting to get hit. Love it!

  2. I like to have a plan, but not a plan set in concrete. So if my plan A gets derailed for whatever reason, I can go to plan B and still win the race. Like you, I try to be laid back and flexible, knowing that there will be good days and bad days, and days where I have no control over my time or the food placed in front of me. And I don't overanalyze or set unrealistic expectations. I just try to keep it simple. And bob and weave.

    Good post!

  3. @Karen - Yeah, why are we so surprised when we get hit with a bad eating day? It's just a part of the process.

    @Jo - Simplicity is so key for me...I can stick to a program if its simple. Makes the bob 'n weave kinda fun!

  4. Okay, I had to laugh when I read you are pretty laid back because I saw your competitive side on Saturday night! Great post. Let's keep this bus moving.

  5. @ Pam - Uh oh, the secret's out? She comes out on occasion. ;)

  6. This is such a great post. Thank you so much for the insight. It really is a balance between biding your time, striking when you need to, and expecting the unexpected. Also, when all of the mess of a sedentary lifestyle and crappy diet vanishes, it's much easier to listen to your body and what it really needs.

  7. I LOVED this post. I love the analogy and I totally agree with you. The thing is life is always trying to hit you with something. It is inevitable. If you are too rigid, what do you do when you forget your lunch at home or have to eat away from home. You have to be willing to make your healthy habits fit your life. It just doesn't work to try to make your life fit your healthy habit "program".

  8. @Abbie - Thanks for stopping in and for commenting! Its always good to see a new commenter join the ranks! And, you're right, so much of getting where we wanna be is wrapped up in that balancing act.

    @Dr. Fat To Fit - I heard a quote once that I've always loved. It went "If you don't expect life to be so easy, it won't be so hard." That fits with what you're saying...there will always be something in life to trip us up if we let it.

    Thanks for stopping in, for commenting, and for following along my journey!

  9. Great analogy! You always seem to nail it! Great post...