Before we dive into the content for this week’s Healthy Habits series, let’s start with a brief recap of what we learned last week.
First we committed to keeping our activities simple, convenient, and accessible to maximize the likelihood of success. Then we implemented a system to track our progress, answered an important question about why it’s worthwhile to make any changes in our life at all, and learned how to be compassionate with ourselves when the outcome isn’t quite what we expected. Finally, we synthesized everything we’ve learned so far in the series to build a keystone habit – a small change that will ripple over into every other part of our lifestyle.
Connect with your why
Now that you’ve had some time to identify, set up, and start practicing your keystone habit, let’s take a step back again to look at the big picture.
Similar to when we asked “Is this all worth it?” it’s important to pull the viewfinder out every once in a while to make sure you’re heading in the right direction.
In the case of healthy habits, the big picture is much more likely to contain your emotional connection then the small steps themselves. In marketing speak, the strategies are what get people excited and it’s the nitty gritty tactics and details that help us implement the strategy but that can also stop us in our tracks because they’r so darn repetitive and boring!
Take for example an intention to lose weight. The acts of dieting and exercising are the tactics that will help you achieve your goal of losing weight. But it’s probably about more then just losing weight. On a surface level you might want to lose weight because you want to fit into a certain size or look a certain way. Let’s be honest though. That’s superficial. Why do you really want to lose weight?
A simple big picture exercise
To get to the big picture, you’ll have to go back to the why exercise. Ask yourself why over and over again until you get to the root of the matter – until you find the real reason why you’re doing any of this in the first place. When you create that deep emotional connection, that’s the motivation you need to keep going. That’s what you need to constantly remind yourself when you’re sick of eating soup and celery.
For example, this year I want to recommit to my yoga practice and my meditation practice. Over the past couple of years, I’ve played with meditating for 15 minutes a day all the way up to 30 minutes a day and I was able to keep up with this for awhile. But then things got busy and it fell away. Now, I’m going to set a goal of 5 minutes a day. Same thing with my yoga practice. I’ve really fallen off the bandwagon on this one because I’m teaching so much. I set a goal to do at least 15 minutes a day.
But it’s not just that I want to practice yoga and meditate just because. I need these practices in my life physically to feel strong, and mentally/emotionally to feel clarity. Without them, I’m constantly overwhelmed and have a hard time getting organized. The feelings of clarity and strength are what I need to remember when I don’t want to meditate or practice. How can you not step on the mat when you remind yourself about the bigger picture?
More questions to get to your why
So what’s your big picture? What’s the real reason why you’re looking to make a positive change in your life this year? How will that change make you feel? What will that change do for you? How, specifically, will it change your life? Tap into these feelings, take some time to really answer these questions, and then remember your why!
Let me know your big picture over on the Facebook page!
Start living life inspired today!
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The Inspired Life Checklist draws from core concepts in the Yoga Sutras and helps you identify where to focus your energy so that you can start living your most inspired life right now!