When you decide you want to make healthy improvements to your diet and/or fitness, it can be daunting to get started. This is especially true if you would like to drastically change your current situation. You are more likely to reach your goals by making small, incremental changes, rather than by shooting for the stars.
In Atomic Habits, James Clear lays out practical steps for creating new habits and systems that will lead to long-lasting progress and change. He helps you understand how small wins compound to bring about the results you seek, and his advice is grounded in biology and psychology.
Packed with tips and success stories, this book is a helpful handbook that is easily applied to any situation. What habits will you create to reach your health and fitness goals?
Last week, we looked at how our rigid demands can create irrational thoughts and disturb ourselves. This week, we will learn to replace these unhealthy beliefs with healthy ones.
Let’s change the demand first. Bring your demand to mind. How can you change it to a flexible preference?
Rigid Demand~ I must work out at least 4 times a week for one hour.
Flexible Preference~ I prefer to work out at least 4 times a week for one hour, but there is no rule that says I have to.
The flexible preference allows space for things to come up, as they inevitably do, and takes the pressure off if you feel run down or sick.
For each of the following which may accompany this demand, examine your thoughts and change them to healthy thoughts.
1- A Drama becomes A Perspective
2- An “I can’t cope” becomes An “I can cope”
3- A Put Down becomes Unconditional Acceptance
1- It is awful when I miss my workout; I will lose my fitness and my week is ruined. becomes
I don’t like to miss my workout, but it isn’t awful. I can think of worse things and I can make up for the missed session later.
2- I can’t cope when I miss my workouts. becomes
It is bad when I miss my workout; it throws off my schedule and makes me feel lethargic, but I can cope. I’m still alive, so I can stand it.
3- When I miss my workout, I am a loser, I am unfit, and I will never reach my goals. becomes
Things come up in life; I can almost guarantee I will miss a workout from time to time. I am not a loser. I am a worthwhile, fallible human being. Missing one workout does not make me unfit, and I can reach my fitness goals even if I slip up occasionally.
See if you can reframe your unhealthy beliefs and change them into healthy beliefs. Then ~ this will take some time, but it will be worth it! ~ challenge each of your unhealthy and healthy beliefs.
Ask yourself, about each belief:
Do you hold any rigid beliefs, and have you indulged in any of the unhealthy thought patterns? Do you have any rigid beliefs about your health or fitness routines?
Drop a comment below if you’ve learned anything from this process, or if it has helped you.
Have you ever been pissed off that something happened, or has someone ever done (or not done) something that pissed you off?
The answer is- OF COURSE!
What a ridiculous question! If you're a living, breathing person, you have definitely gotten (very) angry about something you have no control over. Life is full of things we can't control, and even more full of people we can't control (aka every other person on earth... and sometimes even ourselves).
Over the next couple of weeks, we're going to take a look at our unhelpful thought processes and work on replacing them with healthy thought processes, using the rational emotive behavior therapy framework outlined in Daniel Fryer's book, The Four Thoughts That F*ck You Up... and how to fix them.
Whenever you find yourself getting irrationally angry, you are always making a demand, consciously or unconsciously. Identify the demand, and you can work to loosen its hold on your mind and your emotions.
Choose one thing that makes you lose your mind. It could be rude customers, loud children, traffic, missing your workout, rain, the toilet seat being left up, being disrespected by your team~ anything that gets you going.
Do you have an example in your mind? Now, look for the demand. In other words, what MUST (NOT) or SHOULD (NOT) happen? People SHOULD NOT be rude in my store, my children MUST be quiet when I am on a work call, there SHOULD NOT be traffic when I am in a hurry, I MUST NOT miss my workout, it SHOULD NOT rain when the forecast says it will be sunny, the toilet seat MUST be put down after each use, I MUST be respected by my team, etc.
Once you have your demand, see if you hold any of the following kinds of beliefs. You may be having one, two, or all three of these types of thoughts.
1- A Drama~ It is AWFUL when people are rude!
2- An "I can't cope"~ I CAN'T STAND IT when people are rude!
3- A Put Down (of others, self, or the world)~ Rude people are STUPID IDIOTS!
See how often you can catch yourself getting mad because your spoken or unspoken demands are not being met. Then, see if you are indulging in any of the three unhealthy thought patterns that may be accompanying it.
Next week, we will look at how to change these thought patterns, and how changing them can greatly improve your emotional health and well-being.
Brought to You by Adriana
Living the good, fit life in Seattle, WA. Stay tuned for more bilingual fitness tips and nutritious recipes.