What to do when you’re not sure why

Midweek, I was in a funk. 

Sometimes struggles pile up, their collective weight greater than the sum of the parts. In those moments, I lean hard on workouts. I push back against heavy weight, before life’s weight gets heavy enough to flatten me out. And Wednesdays, well …

Wednesdays are leg days. 

My leg day routine isn’t long. But it hurts. And this week, my internal prosecutor, who continually argues against going to the gym, took a new angle:

“Why bother? What’s the point. There isn’t any. Skip it.”

This new line of questioning was startling. Normally he chooses lazier arguments, like substandard weather conditions, or a suddenly-urgent task that must take precedence over the gym.

My prosecutor’s new position backfired, though. 

The argument’s energy propelled me directly into the gym, a reverse magnetic force pushing me away from its intended conclusion. 

What’s the point,” felt sharp and dangerous. If I agreed with him, he might talk me into a bunch of other things being pointless, also

A slippery slope best avoided.

If you have a good habit—writing, exercise, picking up trash in the neighborhood, whatever—sometimes you might wonder why you bother. 

Don’t overthink it. 

You do the thing because it helps you do other important things. Value and protect the habit because of other things you value and protect. That’s the why.

Oh—and tell your internal prosecutor to shove it.