Habits not resolutions

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Research has proved that your overall happiness is often boosted by the formation of positive daily habits, your feelings of accomplishment and success are easily enhanced by following your simple daily habits. Habits are the small decisions you make and actions you perform every day they often happen without much awareness or conscious intent.  Habits are acquired through frequent repetition. The small decisions you make and actions you perform every day.  Habits are created and acquired through frequent repetition.

“Habits are the invisible architecture of daily life” Gretchen Rubin ‘Better than Before’

Your life right at this moment is essentially the sum of your habits.  The way you feel and look right now are because of your daily habits, whether you cycle to work or school, are snacking on crisps,  or walking 10,000 steps daily will have a direct impact on where you are now and how you feel physically and mentally. Reflect for a moment and consider where you are right now is a result of your daily habits:

  • How fit you are – is a result of your daily habits like walking 10k steps, running or are you sedentary?
  • How healthy you are – is a result of your daily eating habits whether that is snacking on crisps as a daily habit or carrot sticks
  • How successful you are – is dependent on your daily habits

Resolutions create too much resistance Habits to eliminate the need for self-control

The good news is that adding small habits into your daily routine, will in time, turn your whole life around.

  • Exercising or moving every day will change your fitness levels
  • Change one thing about your eating habits every day will change your health and your energy levels
  • Reading 10 pages of a lively, interesting blog like mine 😉 will help to grow your thoughts and encourage a positive mindset.

 

Small changes make a big impact 

How happy you are right now is down to the habits that mindlessly carry out all day.  What you repeatedly do (i.e. what you spend time thinking about and doing each day) ultimately forms the person you are and the personality that you show the world.

Don’t miss: Stepping on the scales every day is not good for you

Do you remember my blog on ‘growth mindset’ if you consider yourself to be happy and become so? It is the ‘law of attraction’.

If you think positive thoughts, positive things will be attracted to you.

It is difficult to control every thought, so don’t do that, instead, concentrate on your mood.  Use that switch in your brain to focus on the ‘blue’ in the sky, every time your brain wanders over to why that person or situation is stressful. Look up – see the blue, even if you can’t find any blue in the sky it will distract you long enough to forget.

“People do not decide their futures, they decide their habits and

their habits decide their futures.”

Frederick Alexander founder of Alexander Technique

 

Habits eliminate the need for self-control

You have a limited amount of self-control strength as you exert it you exhaust it.  Have you noticed that your willpower is stronger in the morning?  Your mindset is positive and you begin your day with a healthy breakfast, you can accomplish your 10,000 steps and exercise routines or visits to the gym easily.  Your brain makes your behaviour into a habit as quickly as possible because it saves longer-term effort.  Creating habits is easy for your brain and gives you the ability to deal with more everyday tasks. If you had to ‘think through’ everything you did in a day you would be exhausted, so habits take out the mental energy from your daily decisions.  Habits make your life easier.

Just look at what you are pre-programmed to buy in the supermarket. If you had to change your brand or shopping list every time you went shopping it would take hours. You have control over your habits, they are not pre-programmed at birth, you set them.

What habits do you have already?

  1. Brush your teeth
  2. morning snack
  3. Reach for coffee in the afternoon because of a tiredness slump
  4. Home for the day glass of wine?

When you want to create a new habit it is very important that you are mindful of your current habits. You can then shape new ones with clarity and observations, mindfulness. However, when you are tired or stressed at the end of the day it is far easier to forget your good intention or even to a few bad habits because you are exhausted.  Turning to a habit has been proved by research to reassure you, so at the end of the day, it is easier to turn to a comforting habit that you have used repeatedly. When you are worried or overwhelmed, a habit will comfort you. Whether that habit is slippers and a cuppa or a large glass of wine after a busy day.  Researchers suggest that people feel more in control and less anxious when engaged in a habit behaviour. There is comfort in a habit, it is reassuring.  

 

Don’t miss: Is your body crying out for help?  

 

The interesting finding from the research is that habits that you turn to when you are stressed don’t have to be bad habits. Instead of reaching for a glass of wine your habit could be swapped for a ‘run’, or simply getting outside in the fresh air and walking or letting your mind wander with 6mins of relaxation in the bath. When you use your daily habits you conserve your self-control. You don’t need self-control to perform an action you have done several hundred times before, you do it without thinking about it. The freedom from decision making is crucial because when you have to decide to do something it is often associated with emotions and feelings that mean you have to resist temptation or postpone gratification.  It taxes your self-control. Of course, it takes self-control to establish a good habit in the first instance.  

 

Pumped on adrenaline?

This phrase is particularly pertinent to me, I used to feel this often from sugar highs or simply overworked stress adrenaline highs. You can feel exhausted on adrenaline from caffeine and/or sugar. You can feel frantically busy which is stimulated and exacerbated from these stimulants you can’t make a change. You are too wired and exhausted, anything new would be too hard to incorporate in a frenzied state. However, when you are calm, when you have time and when you are mindful you can begin to use new habits.  practise your new habits and when you do get too busy your new habits will help you to calm down.

Habits make change possible 

Habits can set you free from decision making and from using self-control.  In order to really shape a habit well, you need to know yourself, be self-aware.

“Habits make change possible by freeing you from decision making and from using self-control” Gretchen Rubin ‘Better Than Before’

 

Resolutions Fail

  • You try to change everything at once. It’s too much, too soon.
  • You start with a habit that’s too big. You get overwhelmed and frustrated that you aren’t making progress.
  • You’re seeking a result, not establishing a ritual you can stick with. You’re focusing on the outcome, not the actual behaviour.
  • You don’t change your environment. We rarely admit it (or even realise it), but our behaviours are often a simple response to the environment we find ourselves in.
  • You assume small changes don’t add. The underlying assumption is that your achievements need to be big to make a difference. Because of this, we always talk ourselves into chasing a big habit.

 

Set healthy habits

Do you have a healthy goal? Having goals gives you a sense of direction and purpose.

BUT what if your goal is a considerable long way ahead of where you are now?  What if you want to be bikini fit in 6 weeks and you are still munching on chocolate and haven’t exercised for the last 3 months.  Overwhelm or stress means that you end up biting off more than you can chew and the goal is too big to accomplish. Habits, on the other hand, make transformations easy but they take longer to implement.  Taking your time means that you will have a new habit for life and complete your transformation.

Too often, you let your motivation and desires drive you into a crazy frenzy.  You try and solve your entire problem in one go.  Your success depends on starting a small, new routine. A routine habit that will ease the strain. A positive approach to your health and well-being.

Would you like to get your nutrition right?  Book a time that suits to chat You will come away from our conversation feeling inspired, motivated and ready to grab life and deal with whatever it throws you, I guarantee. Whether you decide to work with me or not you will become very clear in your goals and have a clear awareness of where you need and want to go.  Let’s chat – click here to book your time

Get Gorgeous is a journey together – yours and mine.

PS. Don’t forget the gorgeous book – your insight into great health and vitality Click here to find out about your Gorgeous book

 

Find out what other clients have to say…

Join my next Pilates retreat day focusing on Relaxation, Pilates, Self Care or find out more about my next Wellness retreat to Greece, with twice-daily Pilates in the warm sun and wonderful company and food click here Greece 4th-11th October 2020

Want to chat get in touch click here to book some time for you now.

 

Sarah McIlveen Business Owner - Consumer Brand Marketer Gorgeous Pilates Retreat 11th February 2019

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Stuck in a rut? This book could change your bad habits forever for a healthier, happier you. Educational, insightful and funny. You know you can do it – I’m going to!

 

Visit www.get-gorgeous.com/book to find out how you can grab your copy.

Jo mum of 2 and about to hit the menopause www.get-gorgeous.com/book Get Gorgeous Book 23rd November 2018

 

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