Taking the momentum from the last challenge into the new one: September is ON ! Parts of the last months challenges will be continued, parts won’t. I analysed my mistakes and made a three part battle plan which will help me succeed this month. If you are trying to change your habits as well, come have a look for some inspiration.
Part 1: Make habits according to my values. It is easier to stick to something if I have the image of an underlying value in the back of my head that tells me why I should or shouldn’t do something instead of just randomly doing things. If you know why you do something – or don’t do something – and that there is a deeper meaning behind it, the habit will be easier to follow. For example:
Yoga 20 in 30 challenge: What’s the value here? Well, I want to be healthy and I want to be relaxed and I want to get in good shape. Why didn’t I stick to it? The style was the wrong one for me, leaving me agitated and angry after each work out. Solution: Go to a different place and try again. Also I want to add some cardio to the mix, so I picked a gym which has Yoga classes and additional equipment which lets me do whatever I feel like doing.
No sugar: The underlying value was to prevent weight gain, which is probably why I failed.
You don’t automatically gain weight if you eat sugar when you work out a bit at the same time and/or reduce the total amount of what you eat. You can eat 5 chocolate chip cookies a day and lose weight if that’s all you eat for the whole day. So, because I didn’t gain weight the motivation to not eat sugar wasn’t big enough. If I think of it from a health point of view and change my perspective a little it should be do-able. Sugar is bad for your health and makes your brain addicted to it, so it is not about the weight, but about stabilizing these fluctuating energy levels throughout the day and prevent mood swings and cravings.
Part 2: Set small goals that are easy to achieve to gain momentum and stay motivated. For example:
Learn something new: The value is to get new skills that will be valuable for me in the future. The reason it doesn’t work so well is that I didn’t see any results and I got demotivated. What I’m trying here is pretty long-term and so it is natural that results do not show directly. But I need some results, some indication that I am moving in the right direction with the effort I’m putting in, so maybe a way of doing this is to break things down into smaller pieces and track the smaller pieces with testing.
Part 3: “What gets measured gets managed” – Peter Drucker, economist
I need goals and I need to see something happening or I will get demotivated and stop. But how do I keep track of all of this without going crazy? 21st century answer: Get an app for it. If you want to do the same, google “apps for habit tracking” and I’m sure you will find something that you like. I have installed one, put in all my goals and it will even give me some fancy statistics at the end of the month which makes me happy because I love statistics. The thought of seeing all these numbers and charts makes me so excited I want to fast forward to next month 😀 No matter what the outcome, this month will be fun!
So these are my three ways to get through September and closer to the best version of myself. What are your challenges for September?