Knowing vs Doing: 3 Ways to Bridge the Gap

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I stood in front of the painting, utterly spellbound.

The complexity of the brush strokes. The creative combination of colour elements. The subtle use of light and dark. It made me feel all the feels.

I was in the National Gallery of Canada and it was one of Lawren Harris’ famous icebergs that I couldn’t tear my eyes off of.

How could simple paint slathered onto a square canvas touch me in such a way and hold me so transfixed?

It got me thinking about the massive difference between knowing what to do, and knowing how to do it.

I know how to create a painting. You take different colours of paint and, using a paint brush, you apply them to a canvas and allow them to dry.

But, the fact that I know what to do doesn’t mean that I can actually do it with any success whatsoever.

If I were to simply go with what I know to do – put paint on a canvas with a brush – it would end up looking less like something hanging in the National Gallery, and more like something hanging in a kindergarten classroom.

Knowing what to do is a great first step, but you also need to know how to do it in order to get the job done.

 

This is what so many people are missing when it comes to making healthy lifestyle changes; they think that because they know what to do, they should just be able to do it. 

They know that they need to eat more vegetables and other whole foods, avoid processed and fast foods, exercise regularly and make stress management and sleep a bigger priority…but do they know how to actually DO those things consistently over time?

No. Because going from knowing to doing requires its own separate skill set.

I call these “CONSISTENCY SKILLS.” These are the skills, techniques, tricks, methods and tactics of long-term behavior change that we must learn if we’re going to bridge the gap between knowing and doing.

 

Here are just a few examples of what I’m talking about:

HABIT DESIGN – Learning how to actually design an effective new habit, from finding the right trigger to making it feel easier and more enjoyable to follow through.

VISUALIZATION – Leveraging the part of your brain that can be easily tricked into believing what you’re merely imagining so that the healthier choices start to feel more automatic.

REFRAMING – Shifting your old perceptions around “treats” to better align with and support your long-term goals.

DISTANCED SELF-TALK – Talking to yourself in a very specific way that helps both reduce the stress and worry that lead to poor choices, as well as overcome the fear and resistance that cause us to procrastinate. 

 

There are many, many more including: working with a talisman, creating an alter ego, understanding delayed gratification, designing an immediate reward system and so lots more.

And the good news is that these are all methods that you can learn! 

Consistency skills are things that you can practice and eventually master! This is exactly what we do inside THE CONSISTENCY CLUB! This is my private membership community where, every month, our members get new tools, training from amazing guest experts, as well as support and accountability to help them stay on track and consistently moving forward! 

My guess is that you’ve spent enough time figuring out what you should be doing…now it’s time to spend some time learning the skills required to actually DO it, and stick with it, long term! Am I right?

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Sara Best

3 Comments

  1. Pauline on May 11, 2021 at 7:10 am

    Hi Sara…I bought your book “Turning Off the Tap” and been reading every morning! It helps a lot to understand the why I have been struggling with weight all my life! I am learning but it is hard sometimes! The good news, I don’t get stuck when there is difficult time versus before…for me, that is a big step and succes! I am more aware of how my brain works…as a teacher for 32 years, I was always telling my student how important to understand how the brain works to help you learn….well this is the same thing! Thank you for the tools…I love your emails too! They help me! You are very generous and I am grateful that you are in my path….continue your excellent work Sara!!! We need you!xo

    • Sara Best on May 12, 2021 at 10:24 am

      Thank you so much Pauline! And I’m so happy to hear that you’re enjoying the book so much! xo

  2. Úna Byron on May 14, 2021 at 4:31 am

    Hi Sara, I enjoy all your tips and emails. They are v. helpful, I would like to buy your book Turning of of TheTap, how would I go about this, I live in Ireland. Thank you, Úna Byron

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