A lot of what we blog about is born in daily conversation, during workouts, client sessions, walks, overhearing people talk at a coffee shop, reading a news article. We live and breathe movement, nutrition, research, education. It seems like we have it all together and we can help about anyone who says they want to move better and eat better.
Yet sometimes, our clients are not entirely on board with their desires. Surely this has happened to you: you say you want to do something, it’s really important to you, you invest in it, you get excited about it, you tell everyone about it, you start doing it and then you don’t finish it or end up doing it poorly. You disappoint yourself, you give up, you feel like crap. Maybe you start again, maybe you don’t. Maybe you pick yourself up, maybe you don’t. You may have done this a thousand times. I have. Only when someone is paying me to help them complete a goal and get their life back, I don’t take halfway lightly. I am determined to go the whole way.
Enter determination meditation. It’s a kick in the ass tool that all of us need when we have invested an emotion in something important and we are seeing that things aren’t exactly turning out like we hoped. Ate some cookies? Skipped all workouts this week? Forgetting your supplements for the 3rd day in a row? It’s time for determination meditation.
1. State your goal clearly. What do you want for yourself in this moment? When you get it, what will be different? For example, I would like to be able to do more pull ups. When I get it I will feel confident on the monkey bars and be proud of my abilities. I will feel confident in my physical body again. Confidence is important to me, it helps me get through my day, it helps me not feel bullied. It helps me get what I want when I want it. Confidence doesn’t take no for an answer. When I am confident I can help more people. My confidence and determination become contagious. See it’s not just about the pull up?
2. Define a time and a way for the practice of the skill necessary to achieve the goal. In my case it’s practicing pulls ups. I will practice them every day in my lunch break, right before I eat lunch. I will practice them with good skill and only do them gracefully and with joy. Become very specific about your practice. Think about the state you want to be in and strive to achieve that state. Think about the time, the place, the whys and the hows. Get specific down to the color of your socks.
3. Make your practice meaningful. When you show up to make your lunch, or do your stretching session, or go for your intended walk, it’s not just food, or just a muscle stretch, or just one foot going in front of the other. It’s a celebration of your desire to have something better for yourself. You have prioritized something which you said in the past was important. You have not just said it and felt it, you have actually shown up and have skin in the game. You have pulled and pushed, and cooked, and splattered and burnt yourself and laughed and cried and you have made a bold statement that you are determined to achieve what is important to you. You got rained on, you got wet, you got 10 000 steps on your pedometer. You are doing it.
4. Meditate on your successes. At night, look back at your day. Notice what you did well. Notice your mental state, your physical state. Are you pleased? Are you tired? Do you need to do more? Do less? Are you entirely on board with the plan or would you like to change something. Participate in your progress daily. Do not float down the river of life, navigate your boat. There is no one else to do it for you.
And then, when you get tired, take a break. Rebalance, refocus. You already know how to get things done better.