In my head, the month of September is almost more important than January as far as pushing change in my life.
September means the kids go back to school and it is another way to mark how fast time is flying, don’t they grow up so quickly!? The daily schedule of the house changes from laid back to busy as they get involved in before and after school activities.
September is the perfect time to make changes in our lives! To me, it is so much easier to make changes in September than January because there is less societal pressure and the new school year’s daily schedule gives me a sense of grounding. In January it is so easy to stick with the daily grind established before Christmas, and hard to make a habitual shift.
Changing habits is what really makes a difference in life and there are a few ways to make that easier to manage.
How do I make a habitual change in my life:
There is a mental and emotional process that happens before a person actually starts to strategize how to establish a new habit. I call it the “That’s it! I’m done! moment (maybe accompanied by some choice words). That’s when you have decided to invest in making the change actually happen. There are no more excuses and you have can’t tell your self one more time that you “Can’t find the time”, or you “Need to lose some weight before you go to the gym.”
Here are some rules I live by.
What can you delegate to clear some time in your daily life? Can the kids make their own lunches? Can your husband get the kids ready for the day or put them to bed a few times a week? Can the kids get themselves out the door and to the bus on time? Can my kids take on a little more responsibility at home?
What is less important to you than making this new habit in your life? Make a list, the new habit comes first. How clean does the house need to be for the family to function? What are you willing to let go of to give your self a few more minutes in my day? Is the expense of *enter expense here* necessary for you to reach your goals or your family’s goals?
Team up with another mom or family to exchange childcare or help with carpools. Without some of my very good friends, I wouldn’t have been able to fit workouts in during preschool and kindergarten or stay consistent through school breaks.
Friends can be a life saver!
Prepare and Organize:
Prepare for the day the night before. Lay out your workout clothes or pack them while you aren’t rushed. It’s easy to put off the prep or say that you will come home to change clothes, but once you get home it is a lot easier to just stay there.
Pack your workout clothes. Keep a spare set of workout clothes and shoes in your car all the time. You will forget something eventually.
Food prep as much as possible.
Chop the whole onion and double up chopping a couple meals’ worth of other veggies. Put away the extras or portion out so they are all ready to go for another meal. The more meals you put together for your entire day, the more organized you will feel, healthier you will eat, and time you will save.
Ask Yourself Does it move you forward or is it productive time?
If an event or task doesn’t move you forward toward your goal then how important is it really? You have to make your time a priority! I started saying no to things that didn’t move me forward: Demonstration parties, watching Netflix or any TV. By the way, cutting the cable bill is a great way to save some money too.
Draw a line that is only crossed by true emergencies. My high school student not planning ahead is not an emergency. If the ambulance needs to be called, that’s an emergency. Say things to yourself like “I will go to the store to get X but I will not drop my workout because of it.”
We’ve had a couple of great examples of clients making their fitness a priority lately. One client gets ready for work in the bathroom despite it not being a full locker room. Another client told her family that unless ambulance needs to be called, they can figure out the issue or wait until she gets home from the gym.
21 days to make a new habit… Really!?
This is BS. Everyone is different. It honestly takes me about 4-6 weeks of reminding myself why I’m changing something, and the why is very important. It may take someone else 3 weeks, but I’m a 5-6 weeker. So I really have to be consistent with something to change a habit whether it be to be more organized in some part of my life or helping my kids make a change in their responsibilities.
Have you reached the “That's it I’m ******* done!” point where you’ve had enough? IF you have then your chance is right around the corner. September is almost here, rip off the band-aid and make a change to get that goal of fitness in your life.