So much has been written about creating good habits. However, there really is little about how to return to them. For you, it might have been exercise or fitness, writing or maybe healthy eating. But, when change (aka life) happens, the same tips for initially creating that habit may not apply.
Consider these seven tips to revive your practice.
Whether based on minutes, distance or overall output, setting achievable goals will provide you an attainable reward that you may not believe you need based upon your past achievements. Markers of success satisfy all of us. Keeping them steady and within reach will also be helpful in returning to performing at higher levels.
The disappointment of not living up to our prior performance can sometimes serve as a deterrent in our current success and future goals. Keeping doubtful internal thoughts minimized will aid your spirit the ability elevate towards a desired outcome.
Goals are great, but nobody’s perfect. We set goals to provide us both a direction and motivation. Especially if you fall short, stay mindful of the goal or adjust it, if needed. Setting realistic goals will enable you to persist with a sense of reward and further our journey.
Visualize Short Term Successes (1 week, 1 Month, ½ Year): Visualization allows us to identify the benefits we seek from taking on this new habit. Benefits might be physical, but some can be mental. How is your journey impacting the lives around you? How is your schedule changing as your goals also change? What will your improvement enable you to do immediately and in the not too distant future?
There is an expression that is “If it isn’t documented, it didn’t happen.” Keep it simple by creating the least stressful way of recording the journey with your habit. For some, an app is all that you need. For others, a physical notepad with just the basics will be enough. Regardless of how you document, quickly thumbing through your notes as your move through your journey and experience moments of doubt or success can be a major benefit.
Once you get into the rhythm of your activity, perhaps your senses will be triggered in a way that is unique during this practice. Perhaps you are aware of the beating of your heart. Does your sense of smell come alive at a certain stage in your process? Perhaps you experience a certain warmth that you feel on your neck and ears. Remaining aware of how our senses awaken as we activate ourselves in “the zone” is critical on this re-embrace of the habit. These elements may differ from the initial journey with this revived habit. Nonetheless, they are the pillars for supporting this activity with the mind, body and soul.
Begin Your Exercise with an Empty Mind. Silence Doubt. Disconnect Replaying Prior Conversations or Disappointments. Where Do Your Thoughts Go During the Activity? Where Are They at the Conclusion?