HOW DO YOU MAKE EXERCISE A FOREVER HABIT?
HOW DO YOU MAKE EXERCISE A FOREVER HABIT?
THE GOLDEN RULE : MAKE IT PERSONAL!
There is a saying that goes,
“If you are clear on your ‘why’, you can bear almost any ‘how’ ”
In other words, being clear on your ‘why’ and finding a personal conviction can really help you stay motivated through even the toughest of life’s challenges — keeping you on track to accomplishing your end goal(s).
So, if maintaining a consistent and healthy exercise routine has been a struggle for you in the first few months of 2019, maybe it’s time you realign more deeply to your exercise “why”.
Devin, first off, what is a ‘why’ and what makes it so important in the first place?
A ‘why’ can be defined as the source, motive, cause, or purpose for setting out to achieve a specific aim, task, or goal. It is a deeply held reason for accomplishing something, better known as a ‘why’.
Finding your ‘why’ is important because it not only can uncover and give great access to a very powerful force within, but it can also help sustain your intention and commitment to your goals even through the toughest times and the most challenging obstacles life can throw at you. Want to know why New Year’s resolutions usually don’t work? Well, it’s because those resolutions are not backed by a deep seated and personally convicted ‘why’. Connected, your why provides a never-ending and truly unshakeable limitless reservoir of energy and vitality within..
The true power of a ‘why’ however, can be seen when it is battle tested. It can be one of the toughest and strongest combatants to facing unforeseen obstacles and life setbacks. For example, without first having understood your ‘why’, you might make headway on your goals and pursuits temporarily, but over time, it is inevitable that you will backslide, lose momentum, and or may even quit entirely. Nevertheless, having your ‘why’ near and dear, something to emotionally fall back on, will help you stand back up time and time again — helping move you forward no matter what! It’s the motivational whisper over your shoulder pushing you forward to achieve your highest life pursuits.
Okay, I get the importance of a why but what does that have to do with exercise?
As with the ‘why’ in life, exercise is no different. Your exercise ‘why’ is your motivation for maintaining your health and wellness routines when no one is watching, and especially when no one is watching. The days when it’s rainy, snowy, sleety or you’re functioning on merely a few hours of sleep, these are the days you need your exercise ‘why’ to muster up the willpower to honor your health and wellness routines. Like anything in life, making progress, always requires consistent effort and when you really know your ‘why‘, and you are firm on it, your health habits aren’t just a casual commitment, they truly are non negotiable.
Having this be firm, then makes you future self available and your ideal results inevitable. When you know your ‘why’, you will push you to meet these new goals even through all of life’s changes and demands ( school, kids, moving, new job etc). Those that find their ‘why’ will be truly inspired and motivated to increase healthier habits and make positive body improvements. Those that don’t, won’t.
Here are a few exercise ‘why’ examples;
– I exercise to be a healthiest fittest version of myself.
– I want to be an inspiration to myself and forever be desired by my husband.
– I want to be a role model for my two growing daughters as to what healthy, body positive habits look like.
– I exercise to show my son that nothing matters more than your health and vitality.
– Health is always life’s #1 priority. There is no amount of wealth that is worth compromising my health
– I exercise to have enough energy to play with my grandkids and pick them up while at the park.
– I exercise to constantly beat my personal best, year after year. (I’ve ran 5 marathons in 2 years and each time I beat my time. I love seeing my progress)
If you don’t know your exercise ‘why’ not to worry. Finding your ‘why’ is a process and one that can oftentimes be very challenging. But hopefully after today, you can create some momentum around this.
To begin, start simply by creating the opportunity to think freely about your ‘why’. Find a quiet space to think, allowing yourself to connect more directly to yourself and to the reasons for making exercise a “MUST” and forever a habit. When looking within, be forewarned, you might also be met by the ‘not so fun’ parts of yourself, the parts we all face daily: the fears, doubts, insecurities, and inner conflicts sitting just below the surface – our biggest barriers to progressing with our intentions.
These barriers are part of being human and are truly unavoidable. However, if you find yourself struggling, get in action. Immediately. Do what you need to do to shift your mindset into a different more positive state. If you can’t, seek additional support from a performance coach like me, one that understands how to support you in a process such as this keeping you connected you to your ‘why’ and empowered in your journey.
Finding a deeply held personal ‘why’ is your golden ticket to changing. Yet, still we sometimes find ourselves losing sight of it. If we aren’t mindful, life’s demands and conflicting priorities surely will steal away all our motivation and progress. That’s why it’s so necessary to keep it in the forefront of your mind.Your ‘why’ will always be there when needed to move you past any emotional and mental block into a space of greater self mastery.
Here are a few questions to help you find and connect more deeply to your exercise ‘why’;
– Who do I want to be physically, mentally, and emotionally a year from now?
– What is my 1 year, 3 year or 5 year future vision for myself?
– What exactly is my ‘why’ for exercise, and have I knowingly or unknowingly been holding myself back?
– What am I doing this all for? Am I doing this for myself or do I see a bigger purpose?
– What excuses do I make around reaching my exercise goals?
– What do I need to change in my life to make exercise a consistent routine and forever a habit?
– How can I sustain momentum when confronted by my own inner limits and when stretching to the next level with my exercise goals?
– Is there a specific picture, quote, ritual, routine or mantra I can create to remind myself of my exercise ‘why’?
What would it look like to set myself up for success with exercise? Is there any strategic prep work I can do on a weekly/daily basis to sustain my exercise habits and support my health journey?
Take 10-15 minutes to write out the above questions. If you do, in no time you will be making exercise a FOREVER habit!