The last time we chatted, we talked about the pros/cons and influences of our environment and the people we hang out with. To help secure success, here are five things to do to make good things happen in your life.
1. ADMIT THAT ….” –IT” HAPPENS
Because we are faced with loads of data and information daily, we simply can’t evaluate each & every choice, therefore much that happens is automatic (efficient) behavior patterns and habits. When we are in uncertain environments we tend to “follow the herd”, so the key is to plan ahead, especially when traveling. Scope out the nearest gym or track and pack snacks. BE the change and you may influence your companions to mimic your healthy behavior.
2. KNOW YOUR TRADEOFFS/ LIMITS
Pay attention to your food intake and avoid mindless eating. Have a set of guidelines that you will follow in all situations so it eventually becomes a habit. (Like, veggies only during happy hour free for alls laden with fake cheese and fried options.) Maybe you have a rule that you will put your fork down between bites. Or, maybe you will only watch TV if doing so on the elliptical or doing exercises during commercials to avoid sitting and being sedentary. This is actually one of my favorite ways to slip in workouts. For normal TV viewers (yes, I am one of those), there’s at least 20 minutes during a 60 minute show. Do you know how many squats, jumping jacks, and crunches you can do? I like to do 30 second circuits repeating exercises until the next commercial, at which time I switch to another circuit of exercises (squats, dips, push-ups, knee outs).
3. BUILD-A-BUDDY (WORKOUT GROUP, THAT IS)
One of the best ways to protect your fitness routine is to invite the friends of your friends to work out and build a wall of influence that increases your chance of sticking to a workout program. Shhhhwwwwingggg!
4. IF YOU’R HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT
Avoid your Debbie downer friends. (Remember that SNL skit where the girl always put a negative spin on EVERYthing?) Yeah, stay away from those folks and hang with the happy ones. It’s contagious and it works both ways. And smile. It reinforces a positive mood. Practice daily gratitude daily by writing down 3 things you are thankful for, say thanks, and tell your loved ones how much you appreciate them. Research shows regular gratitude practice creates new neural pathways that support a more positive outlook. WOW, that’s powerful, isn’t it? Even better is that others are more likely to “catch” your positive feelings over your negative ones. Be a P.O.P.V. or a “proliferator of positive vibes”. It’s seriously catching.
5. TAP INTO YOUR NEO-CORTEX
To help you choose the right (healthy) action, try being intentional using body scanning and labeling. Do a quick check-in with sensations and then label your emotional state by noting “this is just fear” or “this feeling is approval seeking” to kick your neo-cortex into action. This practice allows you to shift from being reactive and move to a calmer state of awareness.
Doable, right? Try my “five” to enhance “alive”. And commit to fit.
What have you got to lose?