Every Fall and Spring, something special happens along Lake Leopold in my neighborhood. A huge flock of geese gather on the water before fleeing the colder winters of the Chicago area. This happens every single year, and I love seeing them. They are creatures of habit.
Being a creature of habit is a good thing… if your habits are healthy. Are you a creature of the couch or of the track? I know which one I want to be!
People are nature’s number 1 creature of habit. We tend to get comfortable, stuck in our ways in fear of change. We like to hold on to old things in order to hold on to old memories… when usually they keep us from making new ones. Sometimes you got to bite the bullet and make a clean break from the past to start a new beginning.
Your Habits Rule You
In the moment, you don’t think to make a choice. Your brain and body rely on the habits you’ve created to know what to do next. Now, if this is true, you better make sure that your habits are good habits – as opposed to eating potato chips in bed every night. That would fall under the “Bad Habits” category. It’s understandable that we stick to our habits. Change activates fear, and fear triggers negative emotions that will stop us in our tracks. How many of us get stuck in our hairstyles? I was trapped with the same angled bangs, layered shoulder length hair for years! When I mentioned to my sister that I got my hair cut she said, “I couldn’t tell. You always have the same hairstyle.” I knew it was time for a change. A few weeks later and I had a long angled bob…and you know what? I felt great.
What Are Your Non-Negotiables?
Make your good habits non-negotiable. Even if they’re not fully part of your life yet, live them, feel them, dream them, and when you finally change your hairstyle, you’re already owning it! At home, I exercise regularly, but I have to make a definitive, non-negotiable schedule for my exercise time. This appointment is like all others – it does not get cancelled. How can you schedule exercise into your day? If it’s important to you, you will find the way. If it’s not important to you, you will find an excuse. It really is that simple!
If you have to cancel your exercise appointment, you have to look yourself in the mirror and explain why. Feel free to debate yourself. Here’s an example. “Hi, Emily, it’s Emily! I can’t work out today because… uh… I don’t feel well! I mean, um, I don’t have time!” “Oh, really, you don’t have time? Well, while you’re talking to me, couldn’t you be doing squats? How much time will you spend on Facebook tonight when you get home from work? How many leg lifts could you do while you’re cooking dinner?” It’s so easy to incorporate fitness into your life if you’re willing to try that there really is no excuse. *NOTE: don’t let your neighbor see you debating yourself, or the men with white coats may come running!
A Final Thought on Exercise…
People ask me all the time about the best time to exercise, and the answer is so simple: the best time to exercise is when you’ll actually do it. Some people like exercising in the morning, and some people feel better in the evening or during lunch. It doesn’t matter. Schedule it when you’ll actually do it.
That is part of the beauty of my new HTF Virtual program. You have your workout plans at your fingertips 24/7 through our app so you can workout when it’s convenient for you. We will be offering a complimentary trial soon so be on the look out for a future email. But in the meantime, follow my Coaching Facebook page where I do my best to motivate, inspire, laugh, and provide tips to a healthy lifestyle. Together there is no telling what we can accomplish.