It’s much easier to maintain a baseline than it is to build one.
A few examples:
It’s hard to reach your ideal weight. It requires a lot of consistency around activity and diet. But, once you get there, it’s fairly easy to maintain it with an 80/20 approach. You’d have to have a prolonged period of inactivity and bad eating to reverse things.
It’s hard to get out of debt. It requires you to live below your means and consistently pay off the debt. But, once you get there, it’s easier to stay on top of things. Building some savings often feels easier than getting out of debt.
It’s hard to build up to running a 5K. But, once you get there, you could take a few weeks off and still get one done. Sure, it’d be harder, but it would take months of no running to find yourself in a position where you can’t run a 5K.
Why is that?
Well, need to establish new habits and behaviours to reach a baseline with something. It’s hard to establish them in the first place. But, once you do, it’s easier to keep them going. They become part of your new normal.
Momentum is a part of it too. It’s hard to build momentum. But, once you have momentum, you have to be pretty negligent to lose it.
And then you have the mindset factor. When you’re building towards something, it can often feel impossible to reach. But, when you get there, you have a different relationship with it. It’s no longer such an impossibility – it’s the new normal. Case in point, the 4 min mile.
This is all useful because it helps motivate you to do the hard work that it requires to build a baseline. Remember, it won’t always be that hard.