Oh, darling, let me be honest with you. The last year has been made up of me sitting at my desk on the computer and a heck of lot less time on my feet moving my body. What this has translated to is what you’d expect: less flexibility and a few extra pounds.
While I am in the camp that believes how I look doesn’t reflect who I am as a person, I would be lying if I told you it didn’t bother me at all. I’ve never been one of those people who like to sit still. Though I’m not athletic, I’ve always enjoyed being active.
What’s the biggest thing bothering me about not being as active as my body needs? The loss of my flexibility, and stiffness in my body.
After spending 30 hours traveling home from Australia last month, I had reached that point where I knew that I needed to make caring for my body a priority again.
It was time for me to get back in the saddle, so to speak, when it came to making movement a priority.
No matter who you are or what you desire in your life, there will have been a time when you feel as if you’ve gotten off track to your goals and desires.
And I get it. We move forward two paces and take one step back. Then we make these huge leaps forward and need to stand still and catch our breath. It’s part of the cycle of living.
Maybe, like me, you got off track in your goals around fitness because you got involved in a project for work. Maybe you were working on a book, or wrote in your journal lately, but had to handle a family crisis. Or maybe, you just got frustrated because you weren’t getting the exact outcome you desired.
Since it’s the first official week of Autumn and the kids are back in school and we still have around 100 days left in this year, I thought we’d venture out together and get back on the saddle. Because, baby I’m all about boldly towards a goal, dream or desire. And I know that you have big dreams and goals, too.
So, here’s fourteen tricks for getting back in the saddle towards what you want. Because, baby, it’s never too late to get back on the horse, even if you fell of years ago!
Say Hello to Awareness
Be honest with yourself and examine the past few months in your life. Where exactly did you get off path? What was the trigger? What was the fear around it? When did a delight become a should? This isn’t about beating yourself up for stopping your forward motion or abandoning an idea. It’s simply looking with curiosity, and stepping away from judgment. Awareness is a beautiful thing!
Listen to Your Heart
What do you want, darling? Don’t choose some unrealistic goal based on some arbitrary outside expectation. Figure out how you want to feel and create a goal focused on that feeling. Listen to the soft voice of your heart for the answers, because your heart knows what you really desire. Don’t hesitate to dive into mediation or prayer. And don’t underestimate the value of working things out on paper.
Allow Yourself a Fresh Start
Every day is an opportunity to begin fresh. You can adjust your focus, change your words of the year, get back on path and rededicate yourself to your desires any day. Give yourself permission.
Create a Plan
Though rigidity isn’t a way to move forward with a lasting change, it’s hard to go in any direction without a plan. This doesn’t have to be a detailed plan, but at least create a general plan based on how you want to feel and the vision of where you want to go. (Clearing Soul Clutter begins Oct. 12th and can help)
Focus on One Thing
I’m a huge fan of big change and know that it’s possible. I did it at the end of 2010. I also know that big changes don’t happen overnight. Choose one are of your life to focus on and allow the others to fall into place. Trying to “fix” everything at once will be like throwing spaghetti at the wall: some of it will stick, some of it will fall to the wayside, and no matter where it lands, you’re going to have a mess. Honing your focus to one thing allows you to create a habit that sticks before you tackle something new.
Save the Date
Like choosing a date for a wedding, mark a date on your calendar that will signal the First Day of your new plan to begin. Like the first day of fall or the first day of school, choosing a date comforts your mind and gives you a target for giving your intention legs. Mark it on your calendar. Share this date with friends or family members. Tweet it. Blog it. Sing it to the world.
Don’t underestimate how supportive nourishing routines can be. While they may seem restrictive, routines are actually about freedom. Routines help you manage your energy effectively so that you can channel it towards your real desires and purpose. Routines fuel your day and nourish your spirit. What structure do you need to put into place to support your goal or desire?
A weekly review allows you to really sharpen your intuitive focus so that the things that really matter to you don’t fall away in the busy-ness. It lets you to see where you’ve been and where you’re heading. A weekly review is one of the keys to staying on top of projects and assignments while helping keep you on track for your goals. This is the time to ask if what you’re doing is actually moving you towards your desired feeling.
Create a Minimum Weekly Requirement
As a part of my weekly review time, I create a minimum weekly requirement for the coming week. Maybe it’s 10 minutes of writing a day or a walk three days next week. Maybe it’s 100 push-ups during the coming week. Commit to a minimum for the coming week that feels both doable and a bit of a push.
Make No Excuses
Be honest with yourself about what you’ve done and where you are. Not meet your minimum weekly requirement? Why? You don’t have to answer to anyone but yourself, but no matter what bumps in the road you had, don’t make excuses or justify why you didn’t. Choose to accept you did what you could, the best that you could, and move forward.
I’m all about the concept of Compassionate Discipline. As humans want to experience pleasure over pain (at least most of the time). Words like “goals” “discipline” and “action” seem worlds away from pleasure. Of course I want to feel good. I want ease and flow! I want unlimited cupcakes, lattes and days where my writing flows and my morning run is fabulous.
Compassionate discipline brings clarity and deliberateness to the game and trumps that a momentary tantrum.
It also means that when we don’t meet our goals, we don’t beat ourselves up. Instead, compassionate discipline allows us to forgive ourselves and move forward.
Set up rewards for yourself for moving forward. Maybe it’s flowers from the grocery store or a coffee date with a friend. Maybe it’s a special date night or new mascara. My reward for sticking to better body care has been the bi-weekly commitment of a regular massage.
Be Accountable & Get Help
Get someone else on your team. Though you have to do the work yourself, it doesn’t mean that you can’t get support or get help. Hire a coach. Join a class. Find a trainer. Get a walking buddy. Tell your best friend. Enlist your partner. Give someone else permission to ask where you are on your goals. (JB is my accountability partner on my movement goals and we’re stretching together!)
Darling, there’s nothing better than a little celebration about your progress. Record it in your journal. Tweet it. Brag on your Facebook Page. Don’t make light of your accomplishments! It isn’t egotistical to celebrate.
Darling, life is indeed short, but it is never too late to create the kind of life you desire. And in order to create that life you want – and deserve – it means you have to take action. Try these tricks for getting back in the saddle around one of your goals. So, fess up: what area of your life do you want to change before the end of the year? What do you want to create? What do you want, baby?