Goals

Believe You Can Do It

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I'm curious...If you have spent the last few years taking care of other people and other responsibilities besides yourself, and you have now reached your forties or fifties or even sixties and beyond, and realized your health and wellbeing needs some attention...do you believe you can make the changes necessary?

If you haven't exercised in a very long time, do you believe you can exercise now?

If you have have gained weight over the past few years, do you believe you can make the dietary and activity level changes now to reach a healthy weight?

If you haven't walked, do you believe you can walk now?  If you haven't run, do you believe you can run now?  If you haven't prepared healthy meals before, do you believe you can learn to eat healthier foods now?

I'm asking because this is a really important question to ask yourself.  What do you believe you can (or can't) do?  Before you do anything else, you have to answer that one basic question, because how you answer is going to affect everything you do from now on.

If you think you can't do something, guess what?  You're right!  But the opposite is also true.  If you think you can do something, then...you can!  

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That's the power our mind has over our actions.  It all comes down to mindset.

A few months ago, I believed I couldn't run.  I did believe I could walk.  So I walked.  Then I read about the run-walk-run method.  And I told myself, "I think I can run for 15 seconds."  Because 15 seconds is not so much, right?  So the next time I went for a walk, I tried it.  Was I scared?  Yes, because I hadn't run in years - not since I was a teenager in physical education classes!  But I believed I could do it.  And guess what?  I was right.  I amazed myself when my feet broke into a run for 15 seconds.  I did it!  I felt like a million bucks!  Just because I ran for 15 seconds.  

So am I running marathons now?  Nope.  I can run for about 2 minutes total now, at a slow jog, without being totally winded.  But I am improving.  And, I signed up for and successfully completed my first run/walk 5K.  All because I decided to believe that I could run.

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Will Run for Beer

Will Run for Beer

When you tell yourself that you can't do something, whatever that something happens to be, your mind is setting up a "limiting belief."  In other words, your mind is creating a limitation for you based upon what it believes.  You can remove the limits by changing what your mind believes it can do.

How can you change your limiting beliefs?

I'm glad you asked!

1.  Start by asking a good question.  We are always asking ourselves questions and then answering ourselves.  If you ask yourself the question, "Why can't I lose weight?" your mind will try to give you an answer, and most of the time, it's not a very empowering answer, either.  But if you ask yourself a better question like, "What is something I could do everyday to help me lose weight?" your mind will start thinking of better answers.  In fact, you would probably come up with a lot of possible answers, and they would all be empowering.  Then all you would have to do is pick one of those answers and try it out.

2.  Get accurate information.  Maybe you have a limiting belief that is based on inaccurate information or lack of information.  There are so many information resources available to all of us now, that we can all benefit from researching until we get the information we need.

3.  Monitor your thoughts.  Negative self-talk has derailed so many people! If you catch your brain engaging in negative or disempowering thoughts, stop that thought in its tracks and switch it around to something empowering.  Start training your brain to be disciplined.  Become aware of when your brain is most likely to feed negative thoughts to you (when you are anxious?  when you are trying something new?  when someone else has said something negative to you?) and create a plan for those situations so that you won't be triggered.

4.  Be careful who you listen to.  It's been said that we become who we associate with.  Sometimes friends and family members are just trying to be helpful (and sometimes, they're not!)  If someone you hang with is giving you advice or feedback that is supporting your limiting belief or is discouraging you from accomplishing your goals or engaging in healthy behaviors, maybe you need to re-assess that relationship and how much you want to be around that person.  And if it's a relationship you can't limit, then you will need to be firm in standing by your goals and limiting discussion that disempowers you.  And look for people or groups who will support you in reaching your goals.

5.  Learn about other people who have faced and overcome similar challenges.  Often something seems to be impossible, until you find out it's been done.  Once we know something has been done, then we start to believe that we can do it, too.  

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Popcorn Sabotage, or Goal Setting in the New Year

Photo by  NordWood Themes  on  Unsplash
Photo by  saskia fairfull  on  Unsplash

It's just a few days into the new year, and already I am breaking my New Year's resolutions.  Oh, how quickly those thoughtfully considered and carefully written out plans crumble to dust when faced with a tin of caramel popcorn from the holidays.  My mind knows I should "Just Say No", but somehow, I can't imagine how it happened, I found the deliciously sweet, crunchy nuggets swirling around inside my mouth, and impulse took over.  I was Out. Of. Control.  Not a good way to start off the new year!

Thankfully, like Scarlett O'Hara, I believe firmly that tomorrow IS another day!  Another day to DO BETTER.  So, with that in mind, I thought I would share my goals with you, and that brings me to my first goal....

1.  I will not beat myself up over failure.  Nor will I allow a temporary failure to permanently set me back.

Ladies, this is a really important resolution.  So often, we mess up and then we let that mistake get to us and drag us down and stop us in our tracks.  How many of us have been de-railed from healthy eating for weeks or months, if not years, by an ice cream binge?  Yeah, I didn't think I was the only one.

We cannot allow our temporary failures to become mind monsters that scare us away from reaching our goals.  Instead, we can use failures to spur us on if we are willing to learn the lessons they teach us.  The lesson I learned?  If I am going to bring treats into the house, they must be compatible with my plan.  

2.  Lose 52 pounds.  I'm starting out today at 218 pounds.  Fifty-two pounds down would be 166 pounds, and that's one pound a week, if anyone is doing the math.  That will get me two-thirds of the way to my ultimate weight loss goal of 80 pounds.  So why did I pick the magic number of 52?  You know, when some of you are doing diets where you say, "I lost 30 pounds in a month!"  Okay, that's cool.  That worked for you, and that's great.  But if I have learned anything over the past year of trying out different diet plans, it is that no way, no how am I going to drop 30 pounds in a month.  It just ain't gonna happen.  But a pound a week?  That sounds like a totally achievable goal.  And if my goal is one pound a week, I can really focus on creating a diet and exercise plan that works for me, for the long haul.  Because ultimately, I want to create a sustainable, lifelong health and fitness plan.  A way of life.  And 52 pounds?  That will be a huge benefit to my health (not to mention my self-esteem!) I'll talk about my action plan in a future post.

3.  Move every day.  And by "move", I mean, get off my butt and exercise in a way that supports my health and fitness plan.  Now, I wear my Fitbit religiously, and I count my steps.  Before the Big Chill hit the US, I was walking approximately three days a week.  And I have to say, on our recent travels abroad, my younglings who are in their teens and early adulthood had trouble keeping up with me.  But I truly hate cold weather, and the thought of venturing out onto the cold, snowy tundra that is Ohio right now at 5 AM is just somehow not inspiring to me.

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Photo by Jeffrey Blum on Unsplash

But that's okay, because YouTube to the rescue!  There are so many workout video options on YouTube for whatever is my jam for that day.  And I don't even have to leave my room.  Sweet!  

4.  Become very intentional with my morning routine.  My morning routine for the past year is to get up with Hubs at 4:00 AM (I know, it sounds horrible, but I actually like it now), drink coffee with him, kiss him off to work, walk (when it's not frozen tundra weather) and then fritter my time away on Facebook until I have to get ready for work.  You might notice that this routine is not really setting up for a great day.  So I am experimenting with a more focused and intentional routine.  I'll still get up and have coffee with the Hubs and kiss him off to work.  But I will add in packing our lunches before he goes.  Then, I will spend

  • MINDSET:  15 minutes with my journal, writing down three things I am grateful for, and the One Big Thing I want to accomplish on this day.  During this time, I will also visualize the result I want to accomplish as completed, send up my prayers to my Higher Power, and ask for my loved ones to be blessed.
  • MOVEMENT:  Then I will take 15-20 minutes to MOVE
  • NOURISH:  30 minutes to get ready for work and eat something--usually yogurt or a green smoothie or a protein bar, and then
  • MISSION:  Spend the rest of my home time in the morning working on this blog. 

Since it is so easy to get sucked into the Facebook Black Hole, I will save social media for evening, when it is wind down time.

Why am I so motivated to get a solid morning routine down?  Because the morning sets the tone for the whole rest of the day, and I want my days to be fabulous!

Photo by  Thought Catalog  on  Unsplash

 

So those are my key goals for this year.  Now, we often have a tendency to write down our goals in January and forget all about them by February.  That's where accountability kicks in.  I'll be posting an update on these goals monthly, so I can track how I'm doing.

What are your goals for 2018?  Share them in the comments below.  I can't wait to see what you're planning!

Download my free 2018 new year success planner

Everyone makes New Year's resolutions in January, and for most people, by February, those resolutions are long forgotten.  Set yourself up for success this year by creating goals and an action plan you can use every day.  

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