It’s amazing how fast people go from “Holiday Happy” to “New Year – New YOU motivation”. All through December I watch people (including myself!) bake, eat, relax, and enjoy their holiday season all the while telling me they’re going to really hustle in January. And we do. We get this “new year – new slate” attitude and go full speed ahead. Some people amp up their business, their weight loss, their activity, their job hunt, and even their “look for a spouse” hunt.
We join challenges: 100 planks or sit-ups a day for a month! Lose 20 pounds in a month! Run 20 miles this month! Write a book this month!
Guess what? Very often, and I’m not saying it’s you because I usually speak from my own experience, when I bite off more than I can chew then nothing happens. I have this stinkin’ thinkin’ that tells me, “well, Marci, since you didn’t lose 20 pounds this month you failed.” And then the work I did towards that goal gets UNDONE because I have this mentality.
Instead all I need to do is start. START. Then I can continue.
Baby steps. I absolutely didn’t succeed in anything until I broke things down. When I wanted to start running I used a program that got me from running to my next mailbox (huffing and puffing) to running my half marathon. I needed the baby steps.
When I started losing weight (this time around) I lost very very slowly. (Think no more than POINT FOUR in any given week!) If I had to think about all I had to lose, I’d have quit. So all I had to do was lose a pound. Then I had to do it again. And again.
And really I didn’t even need to lose a pound. Losing a pound is a result of what I needed to do. And there was my light bulb moment. I needed to change behaviors. And not all at once. I didn’t need to do anything all at once. And I needed to give myself permission to do things at a realistic (for me) pace.
Baby steps. I get to change them one at a time if I wanted as long as I’m doing it.
- I get to drink more water.
- I get to walk around for an extra five minutes per hour.
- I get to make healthy delicious meals for my family.
- I get to pack them for my lunches.
- I get to eat at my table instead of in front of my TV.
- I get to not have sugary temptations in my house and only have them as a once-in-a-while treat outside my home.
- I get to follow the plan of my choosing.
- I get to ask my loved ones for help.
So give yourself a break – but not too big of one. And start. And be realistic. And DO NOT STOP! Helen Keller said, “We can do anything we want as long as we stick to it long enough.” The key piece of that…. “LONG ENOUGH.” That means we can’t stop. Because really….we’re never done.