This time of year is filled with thoughts of the upcoming year, especially regarding health and wellness goals.
With the new year fast approaching, it seems that everyone starts talking about “resolutions”. Generally, their visions and expectations are of big change.
The self-talk dialogue begins with “I’m going to do ‘this'”… And it’s often BIG! I’m giving up this food, I’m going to exercise 7 days a week, I’m only going to eat clean. And the list goes on…
As a Personal Trainer and Health & Wellness Coach, I focus a lot on the pursuit of “Progress, Not Perfection” . This is a philosophy I have adopted in both my personal and professional life. It can be applicable to many things, including self-care, work, weight loss and big projects, as well as the divorce process.
What if you had “permission” to think really small?
So small, you said to yourself, “I can do ‘that'”. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being a yes, it can be that simple! Whatever that 10 is, that’s your New Year’s resolution.
OK, that’s great, but how do you get there? How do you discover what is a 10 to you?
The first step is to discover what you want your outcome to be.
It could be anything! The top 5 for our Vesta participants are often:
1️⃣ Move forward with my separation or divorce
2️⃣ Eat better
3️⃣ Lose weight
4️⃣ Exercise more
5️⃣ Get more sleep
Now that you have your “thing”, how are you going to implement it? What action(s) are you going to take?
Often, we get stuck feeling overwhelmed and stop there. This is where you can begin to change your mindset and start thinking very small until you get to that step where you believe, “I can do this”.
It has been proven that movement/exercise can be a “cure all” for a multitude of things — from reducing stress and depression symptoms to improving your health. Here is a process that can help you get started.
Perhaps you currently don’t exercise at all, and you want to begin working out or walking… the plan is to set yourself up for success.
Ask yourself how realistic is it to go from 0 to 7 days a week for a workout plan. It’s probably not very realistic. Again, start small. Your mindset statement can begin with, I am going to work out 1 day a week for the next 6 weeks and see how it feels.
Next step… how do you plan for that?
Will you work out at a gym, at home or outside? If it’s a gym, perhaps you start with a phone call and learn about gym memberships.
Whatever activity you choose, look at your calendar for the week and see where you can fit it in that makes sense.
Is it when you get home from work on Thursday at 5:00? Whatever day or time it is, PUT IT IN YOUR CALENDAR, so you now have an appointment with yourself. You are that important, don’t cancel on you!
To make it easier, keep thinking small and continue to plan. Is it best to change at work so that you’re ready? Is it better to leave your clothes on your bed so when you walk in you can easily change? Do you need a bag in your car to go someplace to work out?
If you’re planning on walking, plan ahead. What’s your route? How long are you going to go? Even a 5-minute walk can be a place to start! Do you need headphones? Do you need a playlist or podcast? If you are walking in the dark, do you need a flashlight or headlamp? If you are nervous about walking alone, do you need a sound alarm to make you feel secure? If you need to put all these pieces together, pick one each day and start getting ready.
Most importantly, combine your new action with something you already do:
✅ After I walk in the door from work, I am going to go work out/go for a walk.
✅ After I brush my teeth, I am going to go work out/go for a walk.
✅ After the kids go off to school, I am going to go work out/go for a walk.
These actions are all tied to something you do everyday and will support your new action.
Dream big and think small to reach your outcome!
Wishing you a New Year of healthy choices, fitness and most of all, happiness!
Lisa Dahl worked in the boutique catering space for years before following her passion and starting her own business as a Personal Trainer and Health & Wellness Coach in Bolton, MA. Lisa has a focus on providing self-care support for men and women who are navigating life before, during and after divorce. Through her own personal divorce experience and the noticeable lack of resources available at that time, Lisa is honored to be a part of Vesta’s network of professionals. You can find Lisa online at www.astudioat68.com.