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How to Take Action

mindset Mar 21, 2024
How to Take Action | Arangio

So many 40-plus men and women are sitting around paralyzed with indecision.

That's why today's lesson is extra important.

Let's begin.


noun: the process of putting a decision or plan into effect; execution.

I'd say successful people are very good at implementation.

How about you?

When you look at a challenge, or even a simple to-do list, do you have an innate skill for just getting it done, implementing it?

In other words, are you a good implementer?

Because here’s the simple fact.

In any area of life, it’s never the idea that matters, it’s the execution of the idea.

It doesn’t matter if you’re talking exercise, tackling a project, taking on a new role within your company, or doing something with your family.

How to Take Action

Thomas Edison famously said, “Ideas without execution are hallucinations."

This Edison guy was a genius.

I mean, he invented the light bulb, the phonograph, and the motion picture camera.

He's even got a memorial in New Jersey dedicated to him.

Big deal! I replaced a light bulb in our powder room this morning, where's my monument?

Seriously, here are six strategies to execute better and improve what I call your speed of implementation.

1. Have a clear vision

I talk about this a lot, and I will continue to do so for as long as anyone will listen.

Your vision is a time frame in the future, a picture of what things look like.

You can do an entire “life vision” or you could create a vision for a smaller project, like losing 10 pounds.

The important part here is you have a clear, documented, picture of what you want things to look like.

You need a destination before you ask for directions.

And why is it that men won't ask for directions when we're driving?

I don't know what it is, maybe it's a pride thing or something written in our DNA, but we just can't bring ourselves to ask for help.

We'll drive around for hours, running out of gas, arguing with our GPS, just to avoid asking someone where the heck we are.

But unlike stubborn drivers, you don't need to figure out this fitness-and-nutrition stuff on your own.

Find an expert with a proven system (hint, hint).

2. Shoot for the moon

Aim to set big goals and then achieve them early.

I do my best to shoot for the moon in anything because, as they say, even if you miss you’ll fall back on the stars.

This advice is not to be confused with the cheesy pick-up line, "Are you a star? 'Cause you light up my world."

Really, guys? This is the best we can do?

I mean, you might as well just come up and say, "I'm not very creative and I'm not good at talking."

Maybe try having a normal conversation instead, huh?

3. Rip it apart

Whether you’re talking about a small project, trying something new (like hiring a coach), or anything you’re stuck on... aim to rip it apart.

Map out all the steps involved, and ask yourself, "What’s the absolute worst thing that can happen?”

One time I regretfully asked an older gentleman this question and it really opened a can of worms.

He said, "The worst thing that can happen? I mean, where do I start? I could lose my job, my house, my wife, my hair."

But really, the worst thing that can happen is you die with regret.

You didn't take that chance, you didn't follow your dreams, you didn't live your life to the fullest.

Now that's a tragedy.

Typically, negative self-talk and fear stops you from executing your ideas, and this exercise can help a ton.

Once you map it out, and get realistic about what’s the worst thing that can happen, you'll see it’s not that bad.

And if you do lose your hair, just embrace the baldness, okay?

It's like your head is a Chia Pet that just gave up. It's not the end of the world.

4. Move with urgency

Why wait until Monday to start something if it can make an impact today?

Why wait to start a proven training-and-nutrition plan until next month... when you can start making progress today?

You can't just sit around and wait for things to magically get done, like you're some kind of fairy princess with a magic wand.

Because apparently waving that wand around solves all your problems, huh? 

Life doesn't work like that.

You've got to get off your duff and make things happen, otherwise you'll be stuck in the same place forever.

Not to be morbid but tomorrow is not guaranteed.

You might not be able to make a difference or get better tomorrow because you might not be around for that long.

And if you want be a princess, maybe try getting a job at Disneyland.

At least there you get benefits.

5. Set mini milestones

No matter how monumental the task, no matter how big the project, you must set daily milestones.

What does progress look like on a particular day?

Reverse engineer it, break it down into manageable chunks, and win the day.

That's why we check your bodyweight and bodyfat each week.

Recently a client stepped on the scale and remarked, "How could I have gained five pounds since yesterday? Did I swallow a bowling ball in my sleep? This scale is broken!"

Truth is, the scale is working fine.

And this week's accountability check-in allows both you and me to see how you are doing.

Then, based on the data, we can make daily adjustments to keep you on track.

6. Draft

You start this new diet, you're all excited, you're feeling good, you're ready to change your life, and then bam!

You walk past a bakery and the aroma of fresh baked carbs hits you like a ton of bricks.

Next thing you know, you're knee-deep in baguettes and your diet is out the window.

Truth is, everything you see is in draft version. You can always go back and make it better.

Today you are going to try your best, and be your best.

Tomorrow, hopefully, you’ll have a chance to try again.

That goes the same for projects, workouts, or almost anything else in life.

I’m just “publishing” the best draft I can, and then I’ll go back and redraft, and redraft.

Whatever it is you’re going to accomplish, it’s most likely not going to be easy. And that’s okay.

Like Tom Hanks said in the film A League of Their Own:

“It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great.”

The challenge in and of itself is part of what makes success feel so good.

I have the privilege of speaking heart-to-heart with my client-athletes almost every day.

We talk about your struggles, your goals, your personal desires.

Speaking honestly and openly to help you set a map to success, whatever your definition of that may be.

We also discuss how, even if you do lose some weight, it's always lurking there, waiting for you to slip up and eat a donut.

The fascinating part about all of this is that I often find myself giving my clients permission for things to be hard.

That’s the secret.

Once you can sincerely wrap your head around that one fact, you have the freedom to focus on why it's worth it.

Whatever you're struggling with, your fitness, your career, school, family, self...

It's okay for it to be hard because, hands down, it's going to be worth it.

But you know what's even harder? Trying to button your pants after a big meal.

Acknowledge the challenge and revel in the power and capability you have to overcome it.

You are unstoppable; but only if you believe in yourself and ignore the naysayers and negative influences.

One final thought.

If you work with me as a coaching client, you know I require a few things:

Honest effort, consistency, taking imperfect action, and a sense of humor.

As I mentioned earlier, I insist that all of my clients complete a weekly accountability check-in, online or in person.

You can get so much insight about the health of someone simply by knowing their bodyfat.

Ditch your typical bathroom scale, and get a fancy one that measures both bodyfat and weight.

Weight on the scale reveals only part of your story; however, bodyfat percentage tells you about your daily habits.

And then you say, "Thanks for the newsflash, scale. I didn't need you to confirm what my pants already knew."

Remember that you are the sum of your habits.

A middle-aged guy once asked me, "What's the deal with beer and weight gain?"

I said, "Everything in moderation; however, if you're chugging down six packs of Schmitz like it's your job, don't be surprised when you develop a spare tire."

Listen, it's simple: beer's got calories, and if you're not burning them off, they're going to stick around like that weird cousin at your family reunion.

When it comes to fat loss, bodyfat percentage is the gold-standard measurement and the only piece of data I really care about.

Leading researchers agree with me when I say you will have a lower chance of getting cancer, diabetes, heart problems (and a laundry list of other diseases) if you simply maintain "athletic" levels of bodyfat. 


😄Athletic bodyfat: 16-20%

🙂Acceptable: 21-31%

😢Obesity: 32% plus


😄Athletic bodyfat: 10-14%

🙂Acceptable: 15-25%

😢Obesity: 26% plus

Side note: I'm still baffled by the fact that nearly all doctors measure height and weight at a regular checkup... but not bodyfat.

You go to the doctor's office and the nurse tells you to get undressed and put on some paper exam gown.

Twenty minutes later, the doctor saunters in and immediately starts making small talk.

You're just shivering there, wearing nothing but a tissue with armholes.

After some poking and prodding he tells you to lose weight.

You're like, "How about you lose the attitude, Doc? What, like just stop eating pasta and start jogging every day? Yeah, that'll be easy."

He's standing there with the diet pamphlet, unamused, recommending you lay off the cannolis.

Seriously, the only thing I’m pretty sure of is that if you’re reading this – you want to be lean, strong, and healthy, so you can truly enjoy your life.

You can't just sit on the couch all day in pajamas, eating potato chips and watching TV, and expect success to come knocking on your door.

You will need to step out of your comfort zone to get healthy.

You’ll be uncertain. It might even feel a little awkward.

Just not as awkward as the paper gowns at the doctor's office. I mean, they're not even gowns, they're glorified napkins.

But greatness doesn’t come with a guarantee.

Every bit of success that I’ve enjoyed has come by stepping out of my comfort zone.

All the people I know and those I’ve studied who have achieved truly great things, well, they stepped out of their comfort zone to get there as well.

So, if you want to finally rebuild your body, the journey begins with stepping out of your comfort zone and taking action.

Will you?

To your success,

Coach Joe



Joseph Arangio helps 40+ men and women get leaner, stronger, and happier. He's delivered over 100,000 transformation programs to satisfied clients around the globe. If you want to lose weight from home, with the best online longevity personal trainer, or you want to visit the best age-management personal trainer in the Lehigh Valley, you can take a free 14-day trial.

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