A fresh start is so appealing we are forever trying to build them into our plans. We would like everything to be perfect. So, we decide, “Hey, let’s start over next week!” or “I’ll restart that diet on Monday!” The appeal of something new seems to hit everyone in January when we make New Year’s resolutions about nutrition and fitness goals.
The problem here is that hitting the reset button does give us a clean slate, but it only teaches us to start over, not to weather the storms of real life.
Taking a Break
Perhaps worse than a fresh start is taking a break from your goals. Some major life event has happened, (parent is sick, you’ve had a child, you’ve just relocated) and you have decided that you need to take a break from your nutrition and fitness goals because you do not have the time to dedicate to doing it. When this event passes, we tell ourselves, we will get back to working out or eating better. Do you know what? The truth is that more events will happen to you. You will be on the rollercoaster of life.
You are not allowed to take a break from parenting, from working, or from any of the other main stressors of your life. Why is it OK to take a break from taking care of ourselves?
Dialing It In
Instead of constantly starting over at a set time or breaking from the nutrition and fitness goals entirely, why not do some imperfect version of your plan? Think of a dial from 1 to 10 where 1 is your bare minimum level of ability to contribute to your health and wellness and 10 is perhaps fully committed to your goals.
You do not have to be perfect to have an impact on your health. Doing something along a 3 or 4 when you are struggling with work and life balance is far better than giving up and doing nothing, or worse sabotaging your wellness. What does a 3 or 4 look like for you in terms of nutrition and fitness goals? Where are you now?
To keep yourself motivated assume there will be barriers and anticipate that you will need a strategy for when things go wrong. Ask yourself what is likely to go wrong with your nutrition Riding the Rollercoaster of Life and fitness goals? What can you plan for ahead of time?
What can you do to prepare for these interruptions? For example, if you always run short of time during the day, perhaps you need to fit in a short exercise routine first thing in the morning. If you find yourself snacking during the day, prepare healthier options so that you aren’t eating whatever is available en route.
There will always be living in the way of what you want to do. Learning how to live through the interruptions and imperfectly do something, instead of pausing and doing nothing is far better. Always be making progress, even if it’s only a small amount. The goal is not perfection, the goal is to keep going.
Schedule a FREE Goal Setting Session
Do you have goals you’re not reaching? Obstacles are going to happen but your response is what matters. If you’re needing help reaching your goals, patients of COOR Wellness are eligible for 1 free 20-minute goal setting session per 6 months. Click HERE to schedule your goal setting session. Click the ‘Health Coaching’ box and in the comments sections type in ‘Free 20 minute goal setting session’.