I bet you haven't really thought much lately about what lies beneath many of your decisions and daily routines. What if you (and almost everyone else on the planet) have been unconsciously going for what is comfortable INSTEAD OF what enlivens you and matters to you?
I'm thinking about this now because I just finished a workshop about confidence. We were challenged to accept that getting out of our comfort zone was key. The challenge we were given (over the lunch break) was to step into the shower and take a freezing cold shower for 30 seconds.
Getting your body acclimated to the cold has proven health benefits (and a few risks for those not in great shape, so read up first.) I know this.
This was also a showpiece activity for the first part of the workshop.
Did I do it?
No way. There are lots of excuses I could make, such as we only had 20 minutes in which to do this AND grab lunch, I've done this practice before etc... but the cold (no...
I knew setting a 30 day walking challenge in the midst of an unusually blustery winter in Denver would be a challenge. Day 1 was exhilarating, walking in the park, seeing the geese and the cross-country skiers, enjoying the sun and the blinding whiteness of the snow.
Day 6 - not so much. I'd struggled a bit in the subsequent gray, bone-chilling days. I'd shortened my walks, and I'd even considered substituting time on the treadmill at the gym for the time outdoors my heart really wanted.
I'm not sure what happened on Day 6. I didn't walk. I could write a paragraph of explanations and excuses - but as a health coach I know that arguing FOR your limitations just reinforces them, so I won't.
The critical piece for me (as I know it is for you too when you don't follow through on a planned healthier action) is what I do THE NEXT day. What I say to myself. How I manage and generate my energy.
It is snowing a little bit right now. But I really don't care. I can already see that...
It's February. It's cold. The news is dire. Even the cat has been sleeping more than usual. And I'd been off-task and out of sorts for over a week.
So I decided to go for a walk.
NOT the obvious choice. We'd had 3 days of snow in the past week in Denver - over 14 inches. I'd talked myself out of going to the gym all week. "The roads are icy!" "The flu is everywhere!" my disaster-mongering brain whispered to me.
The day before was the icing on the cake as far as losing all self-respect went.
I'd eaten roughly my own weight that day (ok, really a lot less than that), culminating in a pizza delivery (thank goodness somebody was driving in the snow. Relax! I tipped prodigiously, ok?) I'd watched A LOT of Amazon Prime. And I'd had a vague uneasy feeling all day, that feeling of not being very happy with myself and my choices.
So I woke this morning wanting to avoid that feeling of anxiousness about not doing better - but not sure I'd pull it off. And then I went for a walk. I started out...