It’s About the Process, Not the Outcome

It’s not about the numbers, ladies! You see, as a society, we tend to get caught up in the numbers. Whether it is the readout on the scale, the number on the clothing label, the number of calories we burn, the plethora of readouts on our wearable devices, the number on the fat measurement instrument, whatever it may be.



I don’t know if you agree, but I think it is partly from our upbringing with our mothers or caregivers who put a ton of credence in the numbers. Or, do you believe you measure your wellness and fitness progress because it helps you set a concrete goal?

Either way, I am here to tell you, after 16 years in this amazing business, it is not about the number or the outcome.


It is about developing a growth mindset. It is about being flexible in your thinking. It is about enjoying the journey and learning along the way.


Last week I discussed the importance of cultivating a sense of purpose as the foundation for developing a growth mindset. Today’s message about why a growth mindset is crucial to your wellness. This could be the one message that finally convinces you to stop getting on the sale, stop reading your device every minute during workouts, and stop looking at the number on your clothing label. Instead, what if you could just enjoy how new clothing feels?



Over the past few weeks, I’ve been querying our community about their goals for wellness this year. You see, at the beginning of the year, I asked everyone to consider one goal for their wellness in 2020. Over the course of the next couple of months, I left them alone about it. I wanted to make sure their goal was really their goal.

The important questions: Was it achievable? Was it as simple as possible to achieve? What were the barriers to achieving it? Is it time to shift the goal, either because it’s no longer desirable or was already accomplished? Was it not the right goal?



The next step to achieving a growth mindset is to learn from the process we undertake for a goal. We focus first on the process, not the outcome.

Why? Because often, when we set meaningful, achievable, and reasonable goals, we can:

  • • Shift our goals “upward,” “downward,” or pause.
  • • Decide the goal wasn’t the real goal and change it.
  • • Learn more about ourselves than we intended in the first place.
  • • Discover what motivates us.
  • • Recognize what works for us and what doesn’t.
  • • Celebrate successes along the way.

So many women become fixated on the result – whether that is losing 10 pounds, their size, or their overall “look.” The focus on the result impedes their ability to enjoy the process of getting there. The goal can often be something you’ve visited and re-visited many times. Is it a good opportunity to reconsider the goal in the first place…or find another method if it isn’t working?

Let’s take Ginny, who wants to lose 20 pounds. She hires a coach and a nutrition expert and sadly finds herself on the roller coaster ride of yo-yo dieting and frustration. Ginny can:

  • • Decide the goal needs to change.
  • • Dig deep to see what is working and what isn’t.
  • • Learn from the process and create a new goal.
  • • Do
  • • Reflect
  • • Learn
  • • Redo
  • • Reflect
  • • Learn

Ginny may not lose the 20 pounds she had hoped, yet during her weight loss journey she accomplishes even greater things. She possibly established healthier daily habits and is learning how to boundary her time each week for wellness/fitness. If Ginny focuses simply on these positive achievements versus remaining fixated on her end goal, she will be more motivated to keep trying, accordingly adjust her goals, and continue on the path toward lifelong fitness and wellness.


  • • Get out of your comfort zone and try new things.
  • • Think differently about your wellness, measuring it with actions and milestones you can achieve, and then build on them.
  • • You may learn you are better off changing your goal…remain open-minded.
  • • Celebrate growth by acknowledging progress. Small improvements/successes are getting you one step closer to your goal.

Stay tuned for part three next week, which will reveal the next important step to achieving a growth mindset.


  • The latest from Adrien
Adrien founded Fitness on the Run in 2004 out of her home after a successful career in policy and public affairs communications. After spending 15 years developing her own personal definition of wellness and watching thousands struggle with theirs, in January 2019 Adrien founded Alexandria Wellness, the home for the Concierge Wellness Program and Corporate Wellness with Adrien Cotton. Over the course of 15 years, “FOR” was home to more than 2,000 clients, 30 instructors, and hundreds of inspirational success stories. Adrien is now, more-than-ever, passionate about helping women view their fitness as a journey, not a quick fix. Adrien’s recipe for success herself has evolved from a rigid training plan of sweaty and heart pumping workouts to some days getting in her 10,000 steps, consciously breathing, her 7.5 hours of sleep, and her beloved 5-Minute Flow. Adrien believes the most important ingredient is making small changes for big results, even if it’s one new habit formed each month. Still passionate about fitness, Adrien’s clients appreciate her ability to make sessions seriously challenging without a “beat down,” a healthy mix of strength and metabolic (cardio) work and ultimately helping her clients gain real strength in mind and body. She believes we all benefit from being curious about our bodies and that change, or improvement, is within reach despite what your “inner voice” or others may tell you. Adrien is bubbling with excitement to help women learn the importance of a comprehensive approach to wellness, weight loss, and contentedness with yourself, and that every person has the right to feel good about themselves. Most days, you can find her helping clients with their wellness, listening to success stories, and bragging about her twin 13-year-old children and “fittest man in Alexandria” Bill Cotton. Adrien prides herself on her practice of mindfulness, meditation, and putting it all into perspective.

Alexandria Wellness offers achievable answers for anyone who is tired of chasing fitness and health without a clear plan, someone who has struggled and is not satisfied with their fitness and wellness or someone who is open to maximized healthful longevity and fitness along with healthful weight loss. Adrien and her team offer help with food guidance, body acceptance, sleep and stress issues, and insist you have fun along the way.

Schedule your free 30 minute consult here!

Alexandria Wellness
215 North Payne Street
Alexandria, VA 22314



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