Who can relate to waking up one day and realizing that a year has just passed you by? A year pass and you're two steps further from the goals you set at the start of the year. It's not like you didn't give your goals any thoughts, it's more like the thoughts just stayed in your mind without any actions.
Well, I can definitely relate, I'd be first to quickly raise a hand and cover face in shame. Yep me!
There is a lot of research devoted to the statement that it takes 21 days to form a habit or being consistent enough to break a habit after 21 days. The notion is if you do anything for 21 days straight, it can become a lifestyle for you. Essentially you become accustomed to this action and therefore it becomes a habit.
After having my third child I knew I had to develop a consistent exercise regiment as well as customize my diet to have the results I desired. 0f course 35 pounds wouldn't just vanish on its own, don't we all just wish it would though. My midsection was going to make me work for it, and hard. I was faced with a desire versus "legitimate" excuses on why I couldn't have a consistent exercise regiment and a better diet to lose weight and there it began, a battle of the will. I was determined to develop better habits and here is how I did it.
When you are focused on developing better habits or trying to break bad ones, you want to set yourself up for success. You can not set goals that are not within reason or far fetched.
Unrealistic: For example: As a working mom to three, all aged 6 and under including a baby, going to the gym 6 days a week while cooking, monitoring homework, and maintaining a household may be nearly impossible. If I were to set that as a goal, I might fail which might lead to me quitting.
Realistic: Instead, I set a goal to start and complete P90x 3( a home-based work out )that are a little over 30 mins 6 days a week under a 13-week plan. Now this goal is more realistic for me at this time. I could do the workout when the kids are in bed, distraction-free, plus it is not a huge time constraint.
I'm happy to say, I'm 11 weeks in with just 2 more weeks to go and I excited to compare the before and after pictures.
( I might update you all on with a before and after)
The first 2 weeks are vital with whatever habit you are trying to form. It allows you to develop a rhythm and develop sync. Preserver and as you make it to this point, if you are able to, you can then exert mind over matter to continue. After week 2, even when I didn't feel like it, I so used to it I mustered through it to complete my assigned work out for the day.
You need Motivation, find yours: There could be one or many reasons why you are motivated to make changes to your lifestyle. Whether it's health-related, to support your family or personal satisfaction, it's important to know why you are led to make changes because the why can keep you going. In my case, I wanted to get back to my pre-baby weight and I didn't want to buy a new wardrobe, my motivation was to develop a healthier lifestyle to lose weight and not have to buy new clothes.
Keep Track of your progress: I have a family calendar that I keep in the kitchen and it has all of the appointments and activities so that no event falls through the cracks. Once I started P90x, I wrote the week I started and every week thereafter on the calendar until week 13. I knew that if I ever got behind it was throw me off track from the scheduled end date. I kept track of my progress by crossing off the exercise of the day as I completed them.
Once you start your journey, find your favorite method to keep track of your progress. A calendar is a good example.
Accountability Matter: Let's face it, making changes can be difficult. It helps to have a partner that will encourage you and hold you accountable to the goals that you set. I like to exercise in the morning and for whatever reason, I don't get my work out in in the morning it is harder as the day goes on to find the time or energy to complete it. My husband is my accountability partner for this healthy habit, he will always ask me if I completed my work out, if the answer is no, a swift, get to it is followed and that is usually all that's needed to get me going.
Challenge yourself to create healthy habits by taking the first step, the first 21 days could create a lifetime of health, prosperity, or self-improvement. What healthy habits are you looking forward to creating?
Take care of yourself from the inside out. Treat your mind, body, and soul well. Live a life that is pleasing. Colossians 1:10 "That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God."