>Mind

Meriels November blog

MS / 6 November 2015

I think you've probably had an email from Darren about habits, maybe even healthy habits. As a client of his, I know I've begun to articulate my goals in the form of healthy habits.

Actually, it's the habit element that I find most interesting.

I attended a workshop earlier in the year delivered by renowned sports coach, Donald MacNaughton (www.donaldmacnaughton.co.uk). He spent some considerable time talking about habits and how important it was to take small and simple steps, and for each step to be repeated 21 times before moving onto the next step.

As a life-long yo-yo dieter, I had an unhelpful habit which was to weigh myself every day. I needed to see the results of my new diet and fitness routine daily, and be reassured I was always heading in the right direction. And the reality for me was constant demotivation as one's weight fluctuates constantly. I managed to ignore the positive gradual weight loss and change in body shape in favour of what my scales told me every day.

Recently I spoke with Darren about making a mental move towards my food and exercise being a lifestyle choice, and letting go of unhelpful words such as 'diet' or 'regime' which for me imply a temporary status. I've begun journaling and meditating each day. Twenty-one successive days of journaling and I've formed a new habit. And this switch has enabled me to let go of some less helpful habits and form new ones.

So I now notice the scales in my bathroom every morning before I get into the shower, and I choose to stand on them once a week.

Funny how old habits make way for new ones isn't it? And that habits can be unhelpful at times, even though their intention is really positive, and we often don't realise they are there. I wonder if you'll choose to explore and evaluate your habits this week, this month, or this year?

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