What are You Willing to Suffer For?

Health goals journeyThe answer to this question can help you stick to the most difficult healing work: Exercise, dietary regimes, reframing your thoughts and perspectives about life, healing a chronic illness, spiritual growth. In other words, what is so meaningful to you that through pain or discomfort, you’d still want to do the work? This is what you’ll use to find the strength to continue choosing the healing work each day.*

This is also part of the archetypal hero’s journey: The classic human experience of traversing challenges toward satisfying and deep transformation.


Inspiration to Achieve Your Health Goals

Consider this imaginary scenario: If there was a war around you – a tremendous battle – and you’d made it through safely to the other side, what would make you go back into battle? What information/experience/item would you sacrifice your life for, so that your family (or society or tribe) could live a better life? Perhaps you carry insight that will bring a certain cause to fruition. Maybe this is a physical item or a cultural wisdom to pass down to your children, for example.

Or another scenario: What could be so important to make you want to run back into a burning building for?

Use the exercises above to find your “why” and put a visual reminder of this in multiple locations in your home, car, or workplace.


Insight About Your Health Goals

Or, if these scenarios aren’t enough to help you stick with it, try the following exercise:

Choose one of your most challenging health goals. This could be something concrete like weekly exercise, or something less concrete, like forgiveness or feeling joy. Write down answers to the following questions:

  1. What are the benefits of following through with this activity or health goal?
  2. What are the realistic risks or side-effects associated with this activity/goal?
  3. Are there alternative or supplementary ways to reach the same goal?
  4. What does your intuition or “gut instinct” tell you about this goal or situation?
  5. What happens if you do nothing right now (or wait for 1 week/1 year etc.)?


*All of these methods were generously and originally shared online by Dr. Laura Koniver, an American integrative holistic physician.


For more support for setting and achieving your health goals, please explore other articles on our website, including the goal-tracking “habit tracker” pdf.

Counseling, exercise, stress, weight

Dr. Sonya Nobbe, ND

Dr. Sonya Nobbe is a Naturopathic Doctor and Director of Kingston Integrated Healthcare Inc. She has been practicing in the Kingston area since 2007. Dr. Sonya maintains a family practice, with a clinical focus on complex chronic disease, including Lyme disease and Fibromyalgia.


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We respectfully acknowledge that Kingston Integrated Healthcare is situated on ancestral Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee Territory. Since time immemorial they have cared for these lands and waters, and we are grateful. We recognize that a healthy environment is essential to the wellbeing of all people and all life.

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