Thursday, March 2, 2017

Breaking Bad Habits This Year…



These are interesting times in ANY health related field. Many people are going to continue the same tired approach they "tried" (LOL) last year (usually for about 3 weeks). They will join a gym, get "geared" up (to get tuckered out...inside joke), maybe buy a new set of wheels (shoes). Heck, time to try those "toe shoes" out maybe?

Maybe things are great for you (if so nice work), but there is so much to conquer still. 1 change a week is 52 changes a year right? Look ahead.

We are creatures of habit. The trick is understanding the decisions we make and making a conscious effort to make the simple adjustments (just like you did when you did your very first burpee).

The simple truth is this: you cannot "spend yourself" to health, wellness or fitness.

That new gear you bought (to look good in) doesn't do a damn thing for you unless you put in some real work while you wear it. True warriors know who the true warriors are.  

You can spend endless amounts of money to get healthy (I interviewed one lady who dropped $100,000). The end result for most? Empty pockets and a weak body; the exact opposite result.

Take a look at your habits first and see if they line up with your goals…

Here are some tips on breaking bad habits this year:

1. Recognize that it is your bad habit. Take responsibility and acknowledge it without shaming or blaming yourself. It's your habit, and it's there because you've been practicing it consciously or subconsciously for some time. You will be wise to isolate, analyze, and write down what keeps you from progressing forward.

2. Never fear failing or getting worse. You will stumble along the way; challenge is part of the process. Realize deeply that there is a need to change and nourish that need with some level of optimistic possibility. Optimism is a huge catalyst to help you get to your goals; it is the fuel that drives you.

3. Demand constant and never ending improvement (CANI) from yourself. To improve your will power you need to set the tone internally. This is more powerful than others' demands (external) if you intend to improve your will power. Avoid getting too harsh on yourself; minor temporary disappointments with your bad habit are normal. Get over it and change from the conceptual level to a heartfelt resolution (head to heart).

Being certain in your demand to improve is important. You may need help. If your bad habit is serious and costly, so be it. Seek professional help if that is the case. It's the only "other" you can rely on.

4. Change your environment. This is tricky. You can become complacent and think that's it, now that you have abandoned your buddies and old stomping grounds, you have conquered that bad habit and that is it. Not so fast. No matter where you go, there you are.

Changing your environment is a necessary step, but it is only part of the answer. Actually, it's amazing how your inner self can change your outer situation. Start inward. Sounds like Ghandi huh? LOL

5. Be willing to accept criticisms and reminders (as long as they are friendly and helpful to you). Be willing to notice if and when you backslide and gently remind yourself to continue on without your old bad habit. I call it bounce-ability; it is how high you bounce rather than how hard you fall.

6. Understand that we are creatures of habit. Almost all we do in life stems from established habits. It takes time to build habits (good or bad). Those habits that are detrimental need to be stopped. Demand replacement habits that are enjoyable, challenging, and uplifting (like exercise). Out with the bad and in with the good. It is a value system change that’s all.

7. Work on one "achievable" issue at a time. As I stated earlier, one change a week is 52 changes a year. Depending on your needs you may need to adjust your plan. If you can go 7 days without major slips then you might be able to work on another issue. Your healthy habits are cumulative; you have to continue them even when emphasizing another habit (none are mutually exclusive). It takes consistent, decisive will power. Every time you fall, get back on whatever it is you feel needs change or improvement.

You will amaze yourself once you really get focused on the process of getting better...

"Can't help the needy if you are one of them"

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