Wouldn’t it be great if you knew exactly what you needed to do to transform your health and fitness? Even better if it were ONLY one thing?
Am I making it sound like you might as well give up now? Well, don’t! You can improve your health with small changes, but the bigger question is, will those changes last.
Transformation is like a metamorphosis. Like the caterpillar becoming a butterfly. You don’t go back from a change that happens on a cellular level. You don’t go back when you change your mindset for the better. You don’t go back once you’ve discovered your blocks and removed or worked through them. Your new and improved healthy habits and routines keep you on the other side of your struggles.
Did you do the 5 Why’s exercise?
(Here’s a link to the 5 Why’s exercise)
I want to share with you my why. Earlier in the summer I asked myself, “Why do I like about health and fitness coaching?” The first answer was mundane but still valid — I enjoy helping people improve their health and well-being. Nothing wrong with that. I like doing that work, but what’s more meaningful? What keeps me working on new projects, programs, and better ways of serving my clients?
When I asked myself the fifth ‘Why’ I furiously started writing pages of notes. I wrote,
The impact I want to have in the world is to help others return to body, health and mindfulness as the essential priority of their life. This will support creativity, connection, and potentiate a global respect for humanity and the planet.
That’s a pretty big ‘Why’. It brings the air up into my chest because I’m nervous about sharing my why. It seems too big for me.
Just a note that I’ve simplified my WHY into something easier to share.
I help people exercise their mind to eat, move, and be well.
Funny that my love of mindset, neuroscience, and the name of my business came together to form my ‘Why’ and my message.
What do you need to do to transform your health and fitness.
If you were to create a 90-day, a 6-month, or a 1-year plan, what steps would you need to take? What would you need to change in your life? What would you need to improve? What habits what you chose to start or stop doing?
A note about habits.
It’s more challenging to start something new, or to stop something cold, instead of “adding to” an existing habit. Consider your current routines and habits. Where can you add, or make an improvement in those areas? It’s much easier to add another action on top of a habit, or to add a small, easy habit to an existing routine. The pre-existing practice will support the new/modified habit.
Here’s a simple example.
Let’s say you eat a bowl of cereal with milk for breakfast during the week. How could you make your breakfast healthier from a nutritional perspective? What could you eat instead to get a healthy protein, healthy fats, and some vegetables for breakfast? Once you’ve figured that out, practice your new habit of eating one healthier breakfast per week. Over the next couple of weeks you might find it easier to eat this balanced breakfast more often. You notice that you’re feeling better. You’re starting to lose some weight, and you have more energy throughout your day.
When you make a small change on top of something that you’re already doing it’s much easier to solidify that habit. You’re not making such a big change in your life that it would be easier to resist doing it.
How lists can help you choose what to do
The other action step you can take is to make a big list. This is your, What I need to do list.
If you read my last post and did the 5 Why’s exercise, you now know your ‘Why’, and you know what you want to change. Now ask, “What are the steps I could take to help make my ‘Why’ a reality?” List out as many steps as you can think of.
When you feel like you’re done take a look at that list and review it. You want to decide what’s most important. Start moving things around by priority so that you have your #1, #2, #3 and so on. This is now your, What’s most important list.
When you’re done prioritizing your steps by what’s most important, take a short break. For the next and final list you’re going to decide, What needs to be done first list. What’s #1 on your ‘What’s most important list’, might not be the thing you need to do first!
Here’s an example: the task you’ve chosen as most important might also require the most work. That project might need a few things to happen before you can tackle it. Are there tasks on your ‘What’s most important list’ that you need to complete before you can address your most important tasks?
As you’re deciding what you need to do first, compare each task to decide which one has greater priority. When you’ve completed this list you’ll know what you need to do first, and in what order. Then you can work on completing your most important project or task.
With this last list, the ‘What needs to be done first list’, you need to do one more thing. Come up with three single tasks you can work on right away. Once you’ve got that list, you can move to the next step, the how, which is the topic of the next post.
PS. Get my best strategies to make healthier eating choices, fit fitness into your life, and transform your well-being.
Originally published at eatmovebe.com on October 27, 2017.