What does CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) have to do with losing weight?
As someone who’s been on both sides of the spectrum, I can tell you this:
Since the year 2010, I had lost weight, got fit and felt great!
And I did it by doing it in the best way that only I, Kim Pong, can do. By using my CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder).
Why CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder)?
I am a CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) guy and have been coaching people since 2010 on how to use their CliftonStrengths to make their lives better.
When I was 12 years old, I weighed in at 60kg.
So I am speaking with authority here.
I know what it means to be fat and I also know a thing or 2 about losing weight.
And here’s my insight.
Losing weight and getting fit isn’t difficult if you set your mind to it.
In fact, losing weight is easy!
It’s staying fit that’s tough.
Previously for me, very often I would set my KPIs eg lose “x” kilograms or run a certain distance within a certain timing.
And when I achieved my KPIs, I would let myself celebrate.
Before you know it, I am back to square 1. All my life, I am sustainably-fit challenged.
So how did I get fit and stay fit?
CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Allowed Me To Recognise Myself
Albert Einstein famously said that insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting different results. Well, I stopped being insane 12 years ago. And I started doing different things to get the results I want.
I decided to listen to how Kim Pong (that’s me) does best and what he needs in order to get this slippery eel of getting fit into sustained play.
In other words, what is my natural best ways of doing things that I can tap into to help me get fit in a sustainable way?
And one of these things that I am really good at is being adaptable. I am able to focus on what is needed at the moment, go with the flow and make it happen.
For most times, it has positively served me well. But with adaptability, I am also a victim to my own success. As I usually do not have a plan in mind, it does mess up what I wanted to do especially if it is something that requires sustainability like staying fit.
So what does Kim Pong do best?
And what does he want? Be sustainably fit.
Anyway, that started me going. And I did not start with what I want to do. I started with a list of what I would not do.
Here are 5 things I would not do: –
- Set a weight loss target
- Starve myself
- Stop eating my favourite foods
- Strictly follow diet plans
- See failure as discouragement
I told myself, what the heck: let’s throw out everything that has not worked before – all the dieting, all the excessive power exercises; copying of what worked for other people. Stop all that! Let’s focus on the thing that is the reason and the most important here.
From now on, the objective was to adapt myself into what worked for me; not what others “thought” was right for me.
CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Allowed Me To Focus On The Right Things In Losing Weight
This may sound rather proud, self-indulgent or even narcissistic, but actually, it is not. Focusing on me helped me decide on what will work for me sustainably and in the long run.
I like to go with the flow. Usually that lets me be at my very best. But I needed some help that will keep me on track, in the running, and still go with the flow. So what did I do?
I started a list.
Here was my revised exercise list after my “epiphany”: –
- Jog 1
- Jog 2
- Jog 3
- Jog 4
- Push Up 1
- Push Up 2
- Plank 1
- Plank 2
- Plank 3
- Plank 4
- Pull Up 1
- Pull Up 2
- Body 7 minute Exercise 1
- Body 7 minute Exercise 2
- 10 minutes Weights 1
- 10 minutes Weights 2
CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Allowed Me To Narrow My Purpose
After revamping the new exercise plan that worked specifically for me, I gave myself 2 additional rules to live by in my exercise regime:
One: To NOT be restricted by when in the week I must do them. And two, which is my favourite, there are NO penalties if I missed any one of them.
To stay adaptable and perform at the very best of what I do, I set up 5 things that my Adaptability CliftonStrengths loves and that got me started, got going, and kept going: –
- See the list of exercises as a guide
- Strictly following the list is unimportant to me
- Success means action
- Stop expecting instant outcomes
- See any progress as results
So what has happened since I did this?
Well … IT HAS BEEN GOING GREAT!
Since the start of this year, I have accomplished all the exercises except for 2 weeks.
And in those 2 weeks, I have missed out only a few of the exercises.
What a change from my first attempt at following others!
CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder) Allowed Me To Lose Weight On My Own Terms
The results so far? I have grown fitter and definitely stronger. I have shed 4 kg. I am running faster. Pull ups are way easier. I don’t shake like a leaf at the 15-second mark during planking. I feel better and I am way less lethargic. AND I am having fun while doing it.
So yeah. It is working out.
So if you are looking at doing something great and sustainable, don’t copy others.
A disciplined regiment would work for some. But for me, it would have gotten me started on losing weight; but it was an exercise regime that would derail me eventually.
My advice for anyone who’s exhausted every nutritional tip and trick out there – but still don’t see results – is to focus on yourself.
Look at your strengths – how you are at your very best – and tap into that for the best positive outcome.
My potential for sustainable power is adaptability. It is something that the fitness regiment would frown upon. Other fitness gurus may disagree with my method.
But hey, at the end of the day; everyone’s trying to get healthier, aren’t they?
In my case; it worked like a charm. There’s no harm trying this method of self focus on yourself – so why not?
If you like this article and you want to find out more about CliftonStrengths (StrengthsFinder), you can download your FREE guide HERE.
Kim Pong is the CEO and Founder of StrengthsAsia, Creator of the REFRAME MasterClass and the first 20 Gallup Certified Strengths Coaches in the world. He is based in Singapore and works with organizations in Asia in creating an engaged workplace culture for leaders, managers and executives to thrive.