Posted by justme
I like to ask a LOT of questions. Evidence of this: in 5th grade my teacher made me write 250 times “I will not be inquisitive” after one particularly lengthy question-answer session during a history class. (At the time I did not know what that word meant; I do now.)
I find myself continuously asking questions about pretty much everything I do: Why am I doing this? Is there a better way?
We’re just a few days into the New Year. How are those “resolutions” or “goals” treating you? Are you still going?
It’s hard to do something without understanding/knowing/having a purpose. Even the little seemingly insignificant things have a reason. You drink a glass of water because thirst is a basic human need. You wear clothes in the winter so you don’t freeze outside. You go to class to learn and pass in hopes to obtain a degree. You get a job to pay for expenses.
In my last post I talked about taking a new approach to achieving your goals this year, and part of it included listing your reasons for wanting to change things. This is so important.
If you have decided to lose weight this year, why? To help your clothes fit better? To be able to shop in a clothing section reflective of people your age instead of grandma’s? To feel better about yourself?
If you’ve decided to exercise more this year, why? To have more energy throughout the day? To sculpt and tone? To complete some sort of physical feat?
Do you run races without a finish line? No. That would be simply running and running and running… and totally ridiculous. You need to have a reason for doing things. You want to cross a finish line and prove to yourself that you CAN.
If you find yourself already struggling to “stick to task” with those resolutions (which over 90% of people do at some level), take a few minutes to close your eyes and think about your motives. You might find that little extra “umph” that you need to REALLY achieve whatever your goals might be this time around.
What are your greatest motivators?
Posted by justme
Do you make New Year’s Resolutions? It’s always “cute,” in theory:
You reflect over all of the things that you need to improve, change, or “fix” about yourself and contemplate solutions. When January 1 rolls around (or maybe 2), you hit the ground RUNNING.
Suddenly the gym becomes a priority,
you add a few more fruits and vegetables to your plate,
you hit the sheets an extra hour earlier,
you trade your cup of coffee for a glass of water,
you start wearing your seatbelt,
you find time to try a new hobby or sharpen your skills of a previous one,
you start cooking more meals…
and about a week later it all stops. Game over.
It takes, on average, about 3 weeks to either break a habit or form a new one. But most of us don’t have 3 weeks, we have RIGHT NOW.
Am I right?
For however many decades you’ve tried this hit-your-head-against-the-wall method, it hasn’t worked so well. Why not take a new approach?
This year, we’re not going to look at the big pictures.
We’re starting today. And we’re working on today.
Not next month, not 10 pounds, not 3 dress sizes.
Here’s what I suggest you try:
- Take a piece of paper. (Preferably something that’s pretty or eye-catching… but that’s just me.) And save room for “incentives.”
- On the top of the page, write down ONE goal, one thing that you are going to do today that positively aligns with a healthy eating choice you’d like to work on. (i.e. I will eat 1/2 cup vegetables with every meal or measure my food into correct serving sizes.)
- In the middle of the page, write why you are doing these “things.” And I don’t mean something ridiculous like, “To finally be a size 2.” Think of something like “To be an example for my family/friends.” “Because I care about my health.” “I want to feel better.”
- On the bottom of the page, write down ONE thing that you are going to do today/this week that positively aligns with some form of physical activity. (i.e. I will spend 30 minutes at the gym 3 times this week or I will lift weights one extra time this week or I will try a new exercise class this week.)
- Work on each of those “things” TODAY. Don’t think about tomorrow (unless you need to mindfully plan when you are going to hit your 3 gym sessions in advance).
- WHEN (notice, I did not say “if”) you reach your goal, give yourself a cool sticker. (No laughing; it works!)
Now, for the next month you are ONLY held accountable for these two things. When the new month hits, put up 2 new “things” you’re going to add/switch in your lifestyle.
It’s a little less stressful and unapproachable when you think in baby steps instead of leaps.
It took me 2 years total to lose over 100 pounds, and over 10 years later, I’m still trying to figure things out. We are all a work in progress.
Just keep moving forward.
And if you have an “off” day, forgive yourself immediately and be ready to get right back at it the next day. You’re worth every effort.
Just keep moving forward.
Two little things at a time.