So let's see, we're getting toward the end of January. And many people made New Years Resolutions a few weeks ago, right?
Remember? You were going to eat healthier or get more exercise or stop charging up your charge cards or clean the house more or remember to floss or whatever.
So... how y'all doing so far?
Should we have an annoying little pep talk?
Because it seems like we're about at the point where the novelty of whatever Great New Initiative you embarked upon will have just about worn off. It's either getting a little easier, because the changes are becoming a habit... or you've come to discover that whatever the hell you promised yourself is WAY harder that you thought. You're about ready to bail or you already have.
If it was a totally ludicrous overambitious plan anyway, bail away! Good riddance to bad resolutions.
But... what if it was a good idea but you just can't seem to live up to it?
Here's where I think it's important to fight the natural tendency towards black/white all-or-nothing thinking. A "broken" resolution doesn't mean you should just walk away and feel like crap about it. "Oh look at my poor broken resolution, it's all smashed to pieces. God I suck. I'll just have to sweep it up and throw it away; maybe I can start over with a shiny new one... next year!"
Nah. Don't be like that.
Instead, try picking up one little shattered piece and don't worry about the rest of the mess. So what if you said you were going to go to the gym 5 times a week and do 25 miles on the treadmill and a bunch of weights and yoga and stuff? Screw that. Go walk a mile during lunch tomorrow and build on that. Were you going to quit smoking forever and made it just a few days? Well, try it again. Every day not smoking counts for a lot, and eventually all the false starts will add up to success.
Just don't beat yourself up for your failure and use self-flagellation as a substitute for action. Honor the progress you were making by taking another tiny baby step. Forget about how far you said you'd go, and concentrate instead on just heading in the right direction. It's that old tortoise and hare thing--small slow steps will win in the end, even if it's not as exciting as charging out the gates and beating the pants off some turtle.
And for those of you who are still at least somewhat on track, hooray for you! Give yourself a lot of acknowledgment and don't just take your awesomeness for granted. Change is hard! Giving up candy bars and eating more broccoli and lifting weights instead of watching Law and Order reruns--that sort of behavior doesn't come naturally for most people. If you're doing stuff like that--well, you rock!
So what about those of us who didn't make New Year's resolutions? Well, we still have goals, which we are either accomplishing... or not.
For example, while my basic "ten commandments" are pretty much still in place, I previously announced on the blog a couple of intentions:
- I was going to get more serious and structured about interval training; and
- I was going to stop trashing my knees by running. This meant: (a) I'd go to a doctor again to get them checked out or (b) I'd return grudgingly to race-walking, despite it being the dorkiest form of exercise on the planet.
Stay tuned, that's tomorrow's post.
In the meantime, I'd love to know how everyone is doing on their health, fitness, weight loss, or other life goals. Is it harder than you thought, or easier? What's working or not working? Confess your sins or trumpet your accomplishments, it's all good--and very helpful for others who are starting to struggle right now and may need some encouragement or commiseration!