Three things that could be holding you back from feeling good on a daily basis

Hi, friends! Hope you had a great weekend, full of fun and relaxation. Today, I’ve got something different for you. And no, this isn’t just another post telling you what to eat and what not to eat. It’s more than that …

Through working at the gym over the years with clients and class members and through writing this blog, I’ve come across plenty of people who have some bad habits that they just can’t shake. And the thing is, most of the time, they don’t even know they are doing anything that is actually holding them back rather than helping them. And yes, I’ve definitely done some of these too — because the best way to learn what NOT to do, is to do it the wrong way first. 

Three things that could be holding you back from feeling good on a daily basis

Three things that could be holding you back from feeling good on a daily basis by A Lady Goes West

So today, I just want to throw some things I’ve learned out there. Take it or leave it, and here we go …

1. Stepping on the scale every morning and letting that number dictate your day. 

I do not step on the scale regularly. In fact, I step on the scale at the doctor’s office and maybe once a month at home or less. Because the batteries in our scale died a while back and we never replaced them, it’s been a long time since I weighed myself. I don’t know how much I weigh, and I really don’t care to know. It’s probably about what I weighed when I got pregnant two years ago. And it’s definitely more than when I was underweight and overexercising and struggling with my hormones. (More on all that here.)

Many years ago when I worked in the corporate world, I used to step on the scale every single morning, and the number on the scale would tell me if I was gaining, losing or staying the same. Somehow, that number made me feel better, worse or unsure — as far as the control I had in my life — like it mattered as an indicator of something more than just weight. Here’s the truth I’ve come to learn over the last few years as I settled into a healthy place and ditched that morning ritual: Your weight on the scale is NOT a reflection of how healthy you are or of you as a person (or of how successful you are, for sure). If you are super hydrated or you’ve been putting on muscle from a new lifting program, then you will weigh more — but you are actually healthier. If you get sick, miss a few meals or stop working out altogether and lose muscle, you will weigh less, but you are actually less healthy. Your weight is not important in the true aspects of health at all, and it can fluctuate so much, anyhow. (Quick side note: However, if you are very much underweight or very much overweight, then you perhaps need to be a bit more conscious of how you are measuring how you’re doing for health reasons — but the majority of us do not fall into these categories.)

Then, you ask, what is important to assess your health and fitness? How your clothes fit. How you are sleeping. How your skin looks. How much energy you have. How your workouts are going. How your digestion is. These things are “non-scale victories,” and they are also great ways to make sure that you are living your life in a healthy way. You do NOT need to worry about being a certain weight just to say you are, because quite frankly, unless you are a wrestler or flyer in a cheerleader pyramid, nobody cares. 

If you are still stepping on the scale daily to find a number to tell you how to feel, I urge you to stop. Instead of doing that, drink a big glass of room temperature water, stand up straight, put on an outfit that makes you feel confident and give yourself a big smile in the mirror. You have to know that deep down, stepping on that scale every day is a bad habit you should break. It may mean moving your scale out of the bathroom so it’s out of sight, and if that’s what you have to do, that’s what you have to do.

Three habits you should stop doing to be healthy by A Lady Goes West

2. Mindlessly scrolling social media wishing you were someone else in someone else’s perfect life.

When you really think about it, do you actually want to be someone else? No, you don’t. But when you’re bored, stressed or down and scrolling through Facebook or Instagram, it can be very easy to think that so many people have it better than you.

My story when I’m pity scrolling? If I had family nearby to help with Brady regularly I could be working so much harder on the blog and growing my own social media more aggressively, so I’d get more opportunities and be out doing more fun things all the time — thus, I’d probably be dressed in normal clothes a lot more and not always in activewear and running after a toddler and would generally have it all locked down in a more put together way. (Yup, that’s my line of thinking — so convoluted, but so real.)

What’s your story? I bet you have one! The grass is already always greener on the other side, so when you throw in the perfectly curated selection of images people actually choose to post to social media (many of them, posted as part of someone’s job and thus requiring TONs of thought and editing), the grass is on a different level. It’s not even grass. It’s not even green anymore. So just forget about it. No comparison.

I’m not saying you can’t be on social media, because a lot of good things can come from it. But I do think that you should UN-follow people that make you feel badly about yourself or badly about your life in general. And I do think that you should only scroll social media when you are in a good place and are looking for entertainment rather than looking to make yourself feel worse. (Been there, done that!)

The people you are following with perfect lives and perfect bodies are not perfect. They have their own issues, and they are often also wishing they were someone else or were somewhere else too.

So instead of everyone wanting to be like other people, maybe we just all try to focus more on our own happiness? It’s separate from what everyone else is doing anyhow, and we can’t forget that.

Once again, it’s totally cool to like and comment and play and connect on Facebook and Instagram, but much like stepping on the scale everyday, if you feel bad or get your worth from social media, you need to take a good hard look at that habit. End rant.

Healthy tips by A Lady Goes West

3. Always waiting for the absolute perfect time to start something new or make a change.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard someone say they want to start something or make a change, but they need to wait for X and for Y. But X and Y really have nothing to do with starting something new or making that change. It’s just a way to delay and postpone and keep waffling.

Don’t get me wrong, working in a busy job, moving, having a baby — all of these things take a lot of your attention and focus and can be great excuses at times — but if you really want to start something or make a change, then you just have to go for it.

I did this for a long time with Beautycounter, and much before that, it was writing a blog. I wish I had started sooner. I was always waiting for the right time, then all of a sudden a move across the country gave me a big kick enough to create the blog. But it could have been years earlier, if I had just pulled the trigger, and I wish I had. I’d probably be a lot further along if I had jumped in earlier.

Right now, the big thing I want to do is meditate. Never done it before, outside of a structured yoga or reiki class. I keep telling myself I’ll start soon, because I have read about so many of the benefits that would be helpful in my daily life. But what am I waiting for? Who knows. In my head, I keep thinking I’ll start this when …

All I do know is that when you are sitting there wanting to make a change but not making it, what you end up doing is obsessing over how you wish things were or how you wish things could be. But, there’s no need to sit and obsess, just take that time and turn it into action. Even just a tiny step in the right direction can be beneficial. Truth!

If you want to start a blog, become a group fitness instructor, build new muscles or change jobs, just make little motions in the right direction and go for it right now. You’ll be SO happy that you did. And that will in turn affect your overall health and happiness too. Stepping out of your comfort zone feels pretty good. I promise! 🙂 

That’s all I’ve got for you today, my friends. I hope you liked this one, and I hope that you can take something from it in your own life! Please, as always, let me know your thoughts in the comments. Be good and whatever you do — don’t spend too much time on your phone or on the scale today. 🙂

More posts you may like …

Are you doing any of these three things that are holding you back from happiness and health? Find out on A Lady Goes West ... Click To Tweet

(P.S. The outfit I’m wearing in these pictures is from Fabletics, I usually get one outfit a month.)

Questions of the day

How was your weekend?

Do you do any of these bad habits?

What’s something you’ve been waiting to act on?

What’s one bad habit you’ve successfully dropped?


  1. First, I really loved this post.

    1. I have never owned a scale and I’m glad I don’t. I actually turn around when I am weighed at doctor appointments because I do not want that number to dictate my day. I always end up finding out because I see my records and labs and stuff. But still. Who cares? I certainly didn’t always feel this way. But I’m glad I’m at a place where I care much less.

    2. Girrrllllllll. This one. Big huge struggle for me. My story is that I am the only single 35 year old girl on the planet and I am a pathetic, unlovable loser who may never get to experience her dreams of being a wife and mom while everyone else out there has these perfect lives and perfect husbands who take perfect photos of them.

    3. Love this. You know first hand I did this with my blog. I’ve gotten better at this by just forcing myself to take small steps toward goals rather than big ones. I’m learning as I go.

    Happy Monday. Xo

    1. COURTNEY! Oh my friend, first of all, I am SO happy you started your blog, and I am SO happy you don’t use a scale. And you have SO much going for you. The story you tell yourself isn’t true — you are NOT pathetic or unlovable, I’m sure of it. And I know it may seem like your life will not be complete without a guy and a family — and those things will come — but as long as you continue to work on being happy first with your current life (and all the amazing things in it!) you will be open and ready for it when it happens. And by the way, sometimes husbands and kids can be a total drag ahahah, stealing the remote, making messes, disrupting plans hehehe, and those perfect husbands don’t always like taking photos either. Just sayin … 🙂 Happy Monday! Keep being you, my friend! You are worthy and wonderful!

      1. Thanks so much for this, Ashley! I am always so grateful for your support and encouragement and your friendship from afar.

        I bet if we traded lives for a couple days I’d end up being totally overwhelmed! And you would only have to deal with watching recorded Bravo shows. Hehe.


        1. hahahah so funny! I mean, the grass is always greener! And I would LOVE to sit down and watch some Bravo uninterrupted. Let’s swap! 🙂

    1. Thank you, Shelby! 🙂 Hope you’re taking whatever it is you need from some of these points — I know we all need something from them (me too!). And HAPPY MONDAY!!

  2. Love this post Ashley! Especially point 2, its so true. I’m so guilty of looking at others thinking they have perfect lives, perfect relationships…. I myself have posted a photo which probably looked really happy but I wasn’t even having a good time… so others must do it too, social media doesnt always tell the true story!

    And I am really trying with point 1…. hehe.

    1. Hi lady! For REALS! It’s like we sort’ve understand the perfection we see isn’t real, but when we’re not feeling great about our own things, it’s still hard to see. I’m really glad you get it! And it’s not like we can’t share beautiful times and happy photos AT ALL, we just have to separate our lives from the things we see from other people! 🙂 Thank YOU for reading, my friend. And with your scale … hehehe … keep trying! I promise you won’t miss it!

  3. Hi Ashley. Very interesting post. When I am interested in losing some weight I will weigh myself once a week. Since I have been on Facebook I have totally enjoyed getting in touch with former students. I like to see what they have done with their lives and love seeing their children. Since I am retired I think I look at life a bit differently. I don’t look at the future with lots of goals need to accomplish. Rather I think often about the past what I did accomplished. I find myself evaluating my past. Thinking how I might had done things differently with my education or what I did in the classroom. I am still satisfied that teaching and coaching was a good decision for my career choice.

    1. Hi Richard! Yess — connecting with people from the past that you enjoyed is one of the greatest things about Facebook. And you bring up an interesting point about sometimes using social media to think about what you could have done differently — I think we all would feel that way sometimes, but the good news is that all of your choices led you to where you are today! 🙂

  4. Hi Ashley,

    Thank you for all these reminders.

    1. I have a scale and I weigh myself everyday. Dropping that bad habit right away. Weird thing is I know when I do good and when I do bad without the scale. I have made so much progress with losing weight from my last pregnancy, with my third child. I have lost close to 50 pounds and I work everyday by making the right choices on eating and going to my fitness classes.
    2. I’m guilty 100% of doing mindless scrolling. I do it a lot since I have a 1 and a half hour commute to and from work on Bart. Majority of the time I’m just nosing around to see what better things people are doing with their lives. I forget that I am only seeing a very small portion of it. Need to find a more beneficial way to use my time.
    3. I have been struggling with what I want to do with my career. I have put so much time and money towards getting my CPA and I for the second time I have signed up to sit for the exam. Then I start studying and feel like it isn’t something I am very interested in. I have always been more interested in fitness because I enjoy getting healthy and staying fit. I have never taught fitness and wonder if it is just the idea of working in the industry I like and if I would even be good at it. So I am crossed at this point, go after the CPA or go after fitness education.

    1. Hi Sonia! Oh boy, BART times — could you listen to podcasts? Play games? Read ebooks? That’s a lot of time you have to fill and being on social all the time isn’t going to make you feel great to start the day. As far as your third pregnancy — nice job on trying to stay active. As far as entering the fitness world — have you thought about starting it up as a hobby? That’s how I did it while holding down my corporate job – maybe try to go to train to become a group fitness instructor on the side?? Have you read this one?? Good luck!! Thank YOU for saying hi!!

    1. That’s so good that you don’t compare, Amy! 🙂 But probably don’t want to spend TOOO much time on the socials. It’s bad for your neck and mind hahah!

  5. Great post! I ditched the scale years ago and haven’t looked back since! I use the time-limit feature on my iPhone to limit how much time I scroll on social media. It really helped a lot!

    I recently realized that I’m only staying at my current job because it is comfortable (and I know that don’t want to stay in it forever) so I’m looking into changing roles within my company. It is scary to think of starting something new, but nothing good comes from doing the same old thing, right? 😉

    1. Hi Jessie! Good for you on ditching the scale and setting social time limits — so smart and helpful for your mindset. And yessss you should go after a new role — could be a great challenge that will reinvigorate you! 🙂

  6. hi Ashley, I hardly ever post but I just want to say I really love this post. Great points. Also I am the one who won your copy of girl wash your face and I recently just finished it and really loved it. I’m now reading her second book girl stop apologizing and several of the things you mentioned in this post come up in her book so I encourage you to read it (and totally happy to send you my copy when I’m done and then you can gift to a reader?!?! How’s that for full circle)!

    1. Amy! I’m so glad you liked the book enough to read the second one. And you totally don’t have to send it to me when finished, but I’d read it if you did, because it sounds interesting hahah! 🙂 So fun to start a little book chain. Thank YOU for saying hello!!

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