www.TuneInWellness.com – Mental Clarity Post – Guest Bloggers
Authors: Devin A. Markle, M.Ed. & Kathryn Scardino, M.Ed.
We’ve all done it before. Something inspiring, motivating, or even upsetting leads you to make a commitment to yourself to get back on track with your health. You map out a detailed workout schedule and a healthy eating plan. The change starts out great and you’re more motivated than ever. Sure enough, life happens- work schedules change, friends want to make plans- and before you know it you haven’t seen the gym in weeks and have eaten out more times than not.
Often times we fail to realize the real benefits of living a consistently healthy lifestyle. Daily physical activity has shown to decrease heart disease and diabetes, control weight, and improve overall mental health and mood (CDC, 2014). Clearly, developing a healthy lifestyle and sticking to it is beneficial, but how do we even get started without being completely overwhelmed? Start by using a few of these simple mental skills.
Tips to use your mind for jump-starting motivation:
Go Big Goals
Having a big goal that you are striving for is what makes the hard work worthwhile. It may be to run a 5k without stopping or to drop 25 pounds. However, when we just have this big dream goal to work towards it can seem daunting at times. Breaking that big goal up into smaller, weekly goals is more manageable. This helps us feel a sense of accomplishment, which in turn keeps motivation high.
Talk the Talk and Walk the Walk
A lot of us aren’t fully aware of the way we talk to ourselves and how it affects our motivation. When we say to ourselves “I’m too busy to work out this week,” we are limiting our own potential without even thinking about it. Instead, try saying to yourself, “I’m really busy this week, but I’m going to feel so much better after I get in a workout”. We can acknowledge that living a healthy lifestyle is difficult at times, and we can also encourage ourselves to fight for it rather than let it pass us up again. Use your thoughts as a self-enhancing tool rather than self-defeating.
Know your Why
What would healthy living mean to you? What would it look like and how would your life be different? List 5 reasons why living a healthy, active lifestyle is important you. Now that you have 5 reasons, I want you to narrow it down to the 3 most important reasons why healthy living means something for you. Now 2 reasons. Finally, choose the single most important reason and keep that safe with you. That is your Why. It’s the key to your success; the reason you work for it everyday, especially the days when it doesn’t come easy.