Fully Committing Vs. Halfway Committing


How much cream do you put in your coffee?

A splash? None? How about a half of a stick of butter?

It may sound gross. But I've been drinking "bulletproof coffee" for years. (I just use plain old coffee beans and unsalted Kerrygold butter.) If you want the recipe, it's simple. Put a half of a stick of butter in a blender. Add hot coffee and maybe some fun stuff like cacao powder. Blend, enjoy, and get ready for some weird looks from your family.

As you might imagine, I didn't just wake up one day with a butter craving. A few years back, in an effort to become more Californian (and to optimize my health), I started going to Dr. Kelly Austin, who is a naturopathic doctor. 

Dr. Austin is fantastic, and I thought so from the first time we met. After two-and-a-half hours of discussion over two meetings, she made several recommendations, from supplements to exercise and dietary changes. But for whatever reason, I didn't follow all of her advice right away. My health improved, but I still had a few lingering issues. On follow-up appointments, I mostly got the same recommendations I did at the first meetings. Slowly, one thing at a time, I started implementing all of her advice. It was weird consuming all that butter, but I got used to it.

Looking back, maybe it was laziness that made me avoid doing everything she said right away, or maybe it was just too much change to swallow all at once (literally). But at this point, about four years after that initial meeting, I'm actually following all of her advice and I have no regrets, along with pretty much perfect health. The way I've phrased it to myself is, "she knows more than I do about this stuff. I might as well just do what she says".

When I tutor people, I give them a lot of recommendations, too. I totally understand that they're busy and that they might find it difficult to do everything right away. (Keep a journal of mistakes with accompanying analysis? What?) That's fine. I just hope they keep at it and eventually do everything I tell them to do. 

Of course, this may require a hard look at their priorities. And I don't want anyone to compromise health in the name of test prep. But going all-in will make goal scores happen way more quickly = less tutoring time = less money.

The Bottom Line

Committing vs. putting in halfway effort is exponentially more effective. You don't have to do everything right away, but make a schedule to ramp up your test prep slowly so that you'll be doing everything I suggest within a few weeks. You'll be glad you did, and so will your wallet.

Questions for discussion:

1. What's the grossest thing you've ever done in the name of health?

2. How Californian are you on a scale of 1 to 10?

3. What's something you could ramp up to full commitment in the next few weeks?

Big News: I'm hiring another tutor! She's brilliant, personable, and extremely good at tennis. I hope to have her up to speed by June so she can take on some of my clients (and offer weekend hours).

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