Out with the old
Well, hopefully you all had a great Christmas. Seems it comes and goes by faster every
year. I was surprised to see seed catalogs in my mail box yesterday, which I understand is mainly a marketing thing but also it is time to start at least thinking about the garden. The winter solstice aka longest night of the year is past and even though winter hasn't even started in northern Indiana the days will start getting longer as we head towards spring.
Its hard to blog this time of year and not talk about 2019 and resolutions that come with each new year. My wife and I have already discussed a couple of ours. Even though 2018 wasn't the ideal year for me personally, there was some success. My health goals didn't falter too far from the previous year and I've learned a lot about things that I can and can't do, foods that just don't work for me, how meditation does work, and how easy it is to fall back into bad habits. 2018 was the year I really found myself, spiritually. I'll start sharing more of that soon, I've hesitated up til now because I don't believe in pushing my ideas onto other people but I also realize the importance of having beliefs regardless of what they are and if they fit societies ideas. Spirituality is just as personal as a diet plan, and I've come to embrace that fact. Where I failed pretty miserably in 2018 is exercise and my body is feeling it. There are a lot of excuses I could use but the fact is I just didn't do it. So this year that is part of my resolution.
I've heard from a few people lately that they don't make resolutions because your setting yourself up to fail so why bother, as a life coach that is very sad to me. That is saying its better to not even try, which I guess would explain a lot of the health issues in the world. So why do we fail? Why is it so hard to stick to your resolutions? Maybe it is better to not try at all and just accept your fate? I don't think so...
Lets talk about goals. When you talk about your resolutions maybe your too vague. "This year I'm going to be more healthy". The problem with that resolution is its not specific, there is no place to really start. Do you want to eat more healthy? Be more healthy by losing a few pounds, by exercising more? "This year I'm going to be more healthy by losing 20 pounds by June" That is an attainable goal, something specific that you can make a plan and work towards. I also used 20 pounds for an example because it would be a challenge but its something that is possible. " I'm going to be more healthy by losing 100 pounds by June" I'm not saying that isn't possible but I will say its not very likely in normal life. Start with 20 pounds and then lose 20 more, make your goal something that you can do, because if by June if you didn't lose that 100 pounds what do you think will happen, you'll give up.
So now we have a goal, what next? Write that goal in your journal, at the top of page 1. Yep a journal, if you want to be serious about your goals you need to put in the work and a journal is a very valuable tool . If your losing weight, write down your start weight by weighing yourself at the same time every day for 3 days and take the average and write that in your journal. Keep track of calories if you want and exercise and weekly weigh ins so you can see your progress. Write how you feel each day, maybe after your meditation. Goals for the day or really just anything you want to write about, the goal is to write something every day even if its just "I can't think of anything to write" 100 times on the page.
Another thing i think it important to help you stick to your goals is having someone to be accountable to. This is the most important part of a life coaches job in my opinion and I'm not saying hiring a life coach or health coach is the only way to succeed but having someone there to help you stay on track is important. Your reasons for wanting to change a part of your life should be for you but you shouldn't have to do it alone. My yearly check up at the doctors office is where I'm accountable and it helps me stay focused. My doctor knows my goals and she is very open minded and helpful with helping me stay on track. One of my goals was to stop using alcohol and I quit for a year but I'll be the first to admit i enjoy a glass of scotch. So to me the satisfaction of that glass of scotch out weighs the effects it has on my body on the happiness scale. This year when my doctor asked how I was doing with my alcohol I told her that story and she agreed that an occasional glass of scotch isn't a problem but if it does start to be a problem to call and talk to her. That to me is invaluable, and maybe for you its a friend that can help, which is fine but have someone. Even making a post on social media can help, that is telling all your friends your goals and puts a little bit of pressure on you to succeed.
Know your aren't perfect. Losing my parents last year was the hardest thing I've had to deal with and I will admit I fell off the wagon multiple times. That one glass of scotch turned into two and sometimes three. The six pack of beer turned into a case. One of my rules to help keep me from drinking too much was to only buy good scotch or the higher end beers and wines so bringing home a case of "cheap" beer was a good sign that I had to get things under control again. That bowl of ice cream when your feeling a little depressed is going to happen, that's part of it. Don't let that be the reason you fail though. Talk to your friend, life coach or doctor whoever you chose to be your support. Figure out what happened, what events lead up to you feeling like you had to have that bowl of icecream, or bottle of wine or what ever it was. Accept it and move on with a plan for the next time. Don't beat yourself up over it, we are all human and we are all going to have problems.
What's going to be your goal for 2019? Lose a couple pounds, run a mile, 5k, be more finally organizing the garage like you've been talking about for the past 2 years? What ever you decide to do, write it down, find a friend, make a plan and make it happen.
So here's to a successful 2019! If you do decide to make a change and are struggling feel free to email me with any questions.
Until next week, have a happy hippie life.