There were so many people in the gym the first week of January, we had to strategically plan to be there late at night. At the end of January things are back to normal. I am sure vitamin sales are down, too, along with mysterious colon cleanses and liver detox kits. Chocolate and candy sales are back up too, I am sure. We see this every year. We will see a flux of people in May, just before swimsuit season.
By now you should know how you are doing with your resolutions – are you seeing your massage therapist as much as you had planned, did you go to the dentist, did you start having breakfast, did you consider going to bed an hour early? By now illusions must have evaporated and you should be sitting with reality – you managed to do some things and you didn’t meet your expectations on others. Take a deep breath, this just proves you are human.
Time for a deep breath. And a shoulder relaxation. While you are at it, relax your jaw too. Better!
To be honest, this happens to clients too. Sometimes we set way too many goals, life gets in the way and we need to step back and assess how to regroup and do better. Our friend Pastor Ryan likes to say: ”it’s easy to steer a moving ship!” I love that – as long as you are thinking about where you want to go next, you are already doing great. Here’s how to get back on the wagon, because your resolutions are all things that matter to you. Right? Right?
Put a number on your priorities
What comes first in your schedule – a dentist appointment, making sure you pay your taxes on time, your personal training sessions, your stretching routine, your yoga class, wine with the girls, sexy time with your spouse, helping kids with homework? Only you know that, but if you made too many resolutions, you need to prioritize. One easy way to do that is to think of those that are important but also urgent – give those the highest rank on a scale of 1 to 10. In my case I would put 10 on taxes and dentist. Give lower numbers to things that are important, but not urgent. As you start dealing with planning for the highest ranked goals, you will also free up time to take the lower ranking ones in the next few months. Make sure your system of ranking represents your needs currently – if you have diabetes, it’s probably more urgent to eat well than to file your taxes. Use common sense, and when not sure think of the risks of what happens if you don’t follow with your resolution. Prioritize, take it slow, be gentle and kind to yourself, you can’t do everything today.
No man is an island
I learned this expression in English class when I was probably 12. I had no idea what it meant. I just felt that it meant you need others to do something important. Of course you can do a lot of things by yourself, but that’s not always the case. You can’t be alone if you are finding it hard to establish a new habit. Your chance of sticking to a routine, doing a diet, or following through with a commitment grows exponentially when you have company. The golden rule I like to follow is to work in groups of 3 or 4 – this way if one can’t make it on a hike or a shopping tour, the others are there. Form tight support groups. If you need one – let us know – Roland and I lead a few closed Facebook groups for local and international people. It’s free and helps a lot.
Learn from the past
Did you miss half your workouts in January? Used a chair instead of a stand up desk? Ate too much cake? You gained 6 lbs on your ”healthy” diet? Your best move would be to look back and see what you can learn from the past. Feeling all bad and guilty about it does nothing – well, it has the potential of making you dive face first into a giant bowl of ice cream – why stress yourself out when you can look back, analyze, learn, and grow. Maybe you will learn to say ”No” to that fourth glass of wine, knowing how it makes you feel the day after. Maybe you will start showing up for workouts, knowing that your energy levels are so much higher after you are done! Maybe you’ll plan your groceries better, shop smarter, go out less. Always look back in awe, and remember to take notes – life is a lab.
Do something positive tomorrow
You cannot erase the past, but you can start working on your resolutions tomorrow. Do something positive right away – whether it’s starting your day with a shake, showing up for yoga or meditating for 5 minutes. Thinking about meditating can be a good step too. Making the first step back on the path to fulfilled resolutions is powerful. It will also prevent you from all or nothing thinking, slipping into bad habits or wanting to ”forget about it” and start again next year. You have a full year ahead of you and you can make it count.
Pick up the phone
Go back to the first step, where you assigned a number to your resolutions. Take extra measures to ensure you stick to the ones with the highest number. Buy a session with a personal trainer, hire a mind – body coach, set up an appointment with your dentist, join a friend to go buy protein powder. When your resolutions are important to you it will be easy to act on them right away – you will be one day closer to fulfilling your dreams for the new year.
If you are still feeling stuck and confused, don’t give up. Roland and I have a few spots open for nutrition coaching and distance training, so you can always drop us a line – we would love to take you through the first few and hardest months of your transformation!
eatloveandtrain (at) gmail (dot) com