Sometimes I feel that my journey is SO big, and will take SO long that I convince myself that I shouldn’t even try. Freaking nonsense. If a friend told me that same statement, I’d kindly shake some sense into them and tell them they don’t need to conquer the world in one day…they just need to worry about today. Don’t get so worried about tomorrow, or the rest of the week. Just focus on today.
Make one small change, I’d tell my friend. What can you do today to be proud of yourself? To feel like you moved just a bit closer to your goal?? Try a plank. Make a new healthy recipe. Maybe you get 8 glasses of water in [Or maybe your like me and still trying to drink that cup of coffee your poured this morning that’s been cold for hours now]. Get your kiddos to join you on the floor and did some pushups or sit-ups…this may give you a surprise ab workout…my 1 and 5 year old are hilarious when trying to copy mom! If you do all of the above today, that’s great. But will you do it again tomorrow?
It’s said that it takes 21 days to form a habit. Here’s a thought. If you want lasting changes, rather than a quick fix, how about forming some new habits? I don’t know about you, but I’d much rather it take me longer to hit my goal if when I hit it, I maintained it. I’m pretty over the ups and downs and yo-yo-ing. Anyone with me?
Here are a few of the habits that I’ve been working on creating over the past few months and will be continuing into the new year:
- Setting a bedtime for me [not just my kids!] and sticking to it. The struggle is real on this one. But when I do it [shocker] I feel SO much better! We know how important routine is for our kids…so why do we think that it doesn’t apply to us as adults?!
- Read every. single. day. I love to read. I believe that if you’re not growing, you’re dying. But previoiusly, I was not great at making it a priority. There are 2 ways I now make this happen. Either A) while on the treadmill or B) as part of my “bedtime”, 15 minutes before the time that I set. Need a suggestion? This book will forever be one of my favorites and applies to EVERYONE.
- Use a planner. This felt super tedious when I first started. It felt like I was wasting valuable time filling it out. But here’s the thing…when I take the time to fill it out, I’m more organized and remember all of the things that I used to think I could keep straight in my head and therefore it is well worth the few minutes it takes me each day. This is the planner that I use, but a good friend of mine also likes this one.
- Date nights. I know this may sound silly. But if you’re like me, a parent with small children, this is SO easy to overlook. My hubby and I are kind of old-fashioned and would like to stay married. Crazy, I know. Relationships take work. So we got out our calendars and scheduled dates. All 12 for 2017 are set. While our kids are a big priority for us, so is our marriage and we know we need to still like each other after the kids are all grown up!
- Meal planning. This is probably the habit that I still struggle with the most. I LOVE how it simplifies my life, [and my grocery list!] saves me time, money and stress when I do it. Which should all be reasons to keep it going, right? My biggest struggle with this is that life gets in the way sometimes and my days don’t always go as planned. What I’ve done to combat this is to keep a few quick staple items on hand for when I can’t make the meal I had planned. Being able to roll with things helps me to stay on track.
- Learning proper self care. For years I’ve pushed myself to the point of exhaustion telling myself I can sleep when I’m dead. I’ve learned [the hard way, of course] that if I take better care of myself, then I can do SO much more and feel SO much better doing it! One of my favorite things for staying on track with my goals of exercising and watching portions can be found here.
Some of them may sound overly simple, but forming these simple habits really has been life changing.
Sometimes focusing on an end goal can be overwhelming. I challenge you to shift your mindset a bit. Focus on today. Just today. Tell yourself to worry about tomorrow tomorrow. Do the best you can today. How does one eat an elephant? One bite at a time. One small change at a time, done consistently, will add up to big results.
I hope 2017 is your best year yet.