Ahhhh … for some of us now’s the time to go back to school – and for most of us it’s time to get back on track. Have you felt a little off track since the summer started? Now is certainly the time to re-focus on feeling better – actually feeling the best you’ve felt in years – why not? This is truly possible. It just takes making a decision and getting started. Nothing ever happens if you don’t take action. Visualization has its place but you do eventually need to get moving. Thinking about eating well or exercising or getting to bed early remains only a thought if you don’t take practical concrete steps to make it happen.
Here are 5 ACTION STEPS you can start doing today:
Action Step #1: Keep a List of 5-10 Daily Commitments
These are commitments you make to yourself – things you want to do, improve or let go of. For example – “I did not eat ice-cream today” would be an example of something you let go of and is part of your daily commitment of eating healthier. Go ahead check that off – that is an accomplishment – something you committed to and achieved by the end of the day. Don’t be too obsessive with this exercise – as long as the intention is there and you plan to take your commitments seriously you will make progress.
Action Step #2: Focus on Year End Goals
A more long range focus is to look at the goals you plan to accomplish by December 31st. You started off the year will grand ideas of what 2013 would look like right? Now looking ahead you may want to review and revise some of those goals. Perhaps you’ve already accomplished what you set out to do, or maybe the things you thought were worth your attention turned out to be not that important. It’s OK you can let them go. Turn your thoughts to more updated and relevant goals. Perhaps your life has changed dramatically and you are in the throes of a major transition like moving, changing jobs or suddenly having to care for an elderly parent. Certainly in those cases your priorities have shifted. But what if it’s a little more subtle than that like your energy isn’t what you’d like it to be – you know by making some shifts in your evening routine and getting to bed earlier would help you. Or maybe a close relationship has been strained and it has suddenly occurred to you that your communication with this person needs to change, hopefully for the better. These shifts in goals and priorities give you an opportunity to course correct and create something new and fresh in your life.
Action Step #3: Do Something You’ve Never Done Before
Speaking of something new and fresh why not explore something out of the box for you. Go ahead I’m sure you can think of a few things. And no it doesn’t need to be as dramatic as jumping out of an airplane. Maybe it’s leaving work early on weekday and taking a walk on the beach. Or how about … you fill in the blanks. I recommend you do something you haven’t done before at least once a week. And again, don’t just think about it actually do it. By taking this action step you will move out of your normal routine and thinking and become more spontaneous. And often you will find that you have a fresher perspective and able to see creative solutions to any problems you may be facing.
Action Step #4: Give to a Charity
Don’t just think about it. If you can’t think of any you’d like to contribute to might I suggest my favorite charity which is called Nourish the Children. For $22 a month (or more) I am able to feed a hungry child for an entire month. I feel so honored that I can help bless a child with a month’s worth of a nourishing whole grain, high protein food product called VitaMeal. Most of the donations go to Malawi Africa– which is considered to be the 5th poorest country in the world. With the Nourish the Children Initiative we have been able to proudly say that no child died of starvation in Malawi Africa in 2009. It fills my heart that I was a part of this project to end world hunger. Meals are also contributed to other areas of the world that need attention including here at home in America as well. It is very important to give back – don’t hesitate.
Action Step #5 – Keep it simple
We are a nation filled with overcomplicating everything. We often find ourselves overwhelmed not knowing what to do first and having too much on our plates and never really feeling fulfilled. We have lost the art of being happy with the small things – a baby’s smile, the sound of the bird’s song in the distance, a quiet Sunday morning when there is not sound in the neighborhood. Often our nervous systems have become so raw and vulnerable that we can’t hear or sense these simple things. However, we must learn to open our hearts to the simple things in life for better health. If something becomes too much of a struggle perhaps it’s a clear message that we may need to either leave it completely or attempt it again tomorrow. Stop, give yourself a kind and deserving break today and then begin again.