Right after I had my first child, I promised myself that I would exercise, eat healthy e.t.c, in order to make sure that I snapped back. I downloaded a couple of videos and gathered a lot of information about how to ensure i regained tight stomach muscles. I promised myself that I would do 20 sit ups every day and possibly even start doing Pilates (I spent every morning of my maternity leave watching Gena West coach Pilates effortlessly – she’s amazing by the way)
I gathered more information on various types of exercises that I could do in the comfort of my home- exercises that were not too hard.
However I lost steam after sometime and more importantly interest. Even though I gave a lot of excuses, it’s not like I didn’t even do one sit up. I could only manage to do 5 days of 10 sit ups each, because by the 10th sit up, I felt like I was going to die. On the 5th day, I felt very ill and attributed my illness to the exercise. I promptly put an end to it, “I can’t come and go and kill myself” I said. I haven’t done sit ups till this day.
Of course when I look at people who are able to stick to work out routines and are disciplined enough to do what I have failed at, I feel ashamed. Maybe not. I feel bad sha , but we move.
I also made excuses for my lack of consistency: they have more willpower than I do, they have a passion for working out (some people are weird like that), they have all the exercise gear they need, they have a nice gym in their house, their office pays for gym membership, they have a personal trainers, yen, yen,yen.
That’s what they are and that’s all they are really. Excuses.
The simple truth is that anyone can do anything that they’ve set their minds to do. Anything can be accomplished as long as there is someone dedicated and disciplined enough to accomplish it.
There are so many ‘How to be consistent’ and ‘ How to achieve your goals’ books out there and my aim is not to re-write them. In my quest for personal development, I’ve noticed a few things which have worked for me and I’d like to share them with you.
Writing down the end goal
It doesn’t matter what it is, write it down and stick it someplace you’ll see it every morning E.g. ‘ I want to have a flatter tummy so I can stop wearing peplum to cover belle’. I would suggest a sticky note on your mirror and a daily alarm on your phone. Writing down a goal to be achieved, does wonders to the mind. It’s sort of a programming hack for the brain. It actually works.
Breaking the task into tiny, easy to accomplish pieces
We look at the whole thing like mount Kilimanjaro and it overwhelms us. In the end we accomplish nothing because it looks like too much work.
My plan was to do 20 sit ups a day, morning and night, totalling 40 daily. Inevitably, tiredness from breastfeeding and taking care of a baby (and going back to work full time) scuttled that dream. I should have just started with 2 sit ups, every morning, consistently for 30 days. Perhaps I may have achieved a better result.
Celebrating and affirming ourselves once we’ve accomplished our tasks
So you woke up early this morning to exercise, write a couple hundred words for your new book, shoot a YouTube video for your channel, spend time praying or whatever your goal was? Congratulate yourself.
Envisioning the end result
Place a picture of your end goal in the same place as you’ve written your goal. I am a big believer in vision boards, a large pin board placed in your bedroom where you place images of all the good things you envision for yourself. This programs your brain to look forward to the reward. It could be anything. A sexy little black dress you really wish you could fit into, hanging close by where you can see it every day and the envious looks on your friends faces as they call you yummy mummy (yeah you get the picture). The thought will drive you to take action.
Again, the important thing is to set your mind to do it, because you actually can. You just need to take one little action every single day.
Photo Credit: © .shock | Dreamstime