HOW TO STAY ON TRACK WHEN LIFE GETS IN THE WAY
Well last week was fun, wasn’t it? It just feels great to build momentum after a fresh start.
If you are off to an explosive start, awesome keep the momentum going! But maybe the last week was a false start for some of us? Life happens and schedules fill up quickly. Enough interruptions and our grand plan for our day can fall by the wayside.
If you feel like you’ve tripped up right at the start of your resolutions, don’t feel too bad. It might be helpful to remember that you may be trying to undo years of habit with a single decision.
“You can’t change an ingrained habit with just a few days of willpower.” – SETH GODIN
Investing the Time
When I’m baking cookies, my husband usually gets impatient. It’s often only half the batch makes it into the oven (this is another fitness issue for another time). Let’s say I give in to his pleadings and try to get the cookies done faster. Instead of putting the cookies in for ten minutes, I put them in for five. And to make sure they cook faster, I turn up the heat from 300 to 600 degrees.
Would trying to bake the cookies faster help?
It would only spoil the result.
Fitness and baking don’t generally go hand-in-hand, but in this case we can draw some parallels. Change takes time. When setting goals, it’s very tempting to try and achieve them quickly. But we might burn-out in the process.
Fear of Failure
Not hitting a goal is disappointing. Maybe it’s easier to not even try?
It sure feels safer. After all, if we don’t reach for something greater, we can’t be disappointed. Maybe the goals we have set weren’t really meaningful or impactful. They keep us from becoming uncomfortable and we don’t feel so bad if we give up on them.
If you are reading this, then you aren’t someone who is content to stay where they are. I am writing for people who are hungry.
Now if you are hungry, a safe goal is not going to satisfy you. It’s not going to inspire you and it will not give you an opportunity to be an example to others.
We all have internal thermostats. We like things a certain temperature and can start to feel uncomfortable when the temperature rises or falls a few degrees.
But have you noticed, over time you can get used to the new temperature?
Fitness momentum works this way as well. We notice if we put on a few pounds, or start to lose weight. At that point, one of two things can happen.
- Our inertia can take hold and try to bring us back to where we were.
- We develop new habits and keep going in the same direction.
Obviously, we want to promote the habits that keep us moving in the right direction. It’s helpful to remember that this inertia is going to fight us. We need to watch for it, acknowledge it, then develop actions that will help us defeat it!
Life is going to disengage you from your goal from time to time. Don’t be hard on yourself. We are wired a certain way. The good news is we have some control over the wiring and we can rig the system to our advantage! It just takes some time to overcome long term habits.
Keep the momentum going.