October 24, 2013

Yes, New Year Resolutions in October. Here’s Why.

“Do what you can with what you have right where you are.”

~ Theodore Roosevelt

Words never rang truer than exhibited by a man whose very being was the epitome of stepping into the moment and making things happen.

The 26th President of the United States was not only an exuberant leader, a naturalist and somewhat of a cowboy, but he had a wealth of inspirational quotes that depicted his time here on earth. As much as I’m not into the drama of the political scope of life, I do admire Teddy Roosevelt and what he portrayed.

Winning a Nobel Peace Prize was also part of his legacy, as was his leadership in the Progressive Movement. Why am I dwelling on the “Teddy” bear so much? It has to do with a continued effort in our own personal history of making changes happen, and in a random thought, this man’s inspiration got me going on this whole concept.

If you start now with 2014 resolutions, your subconscious will automatically put forth this momentum in your brain, and the habit will be solidified by the new year.

Granted, any futuristic predictions aren’t exactly in the moment, but it does take approximately 90 days for a habit to form. This all sounds like a rather lofty goal, yet the research highlights the early stages of a change, the continued stages of that same change, and if you are lucky enough to take it all the way past the 90 days, there is quite the reward at the end: a new habit is formed!

From nutrition to exercise to spiritual conditioning, the result is the same-this habit will more than likely stick with you after your persistence and patience.

If you are sincerely working towards positive habits of living, the result will pave the way for who you are.

From quitting the daily cigarette to acquiring more toxin-free products in your household, to eliminating certain dietary habits that are so outworn and no longer healthy, to putting one foot in front of the other in training for a road race, having your last drunken night, taking a new yoga class; all these practices, if begun in small steps and stages, will surely launch the New Year in the right direction.

From a wellness standpoint, these are ideas to begin the overhaul and take it in a new habitual direction.

It may be much simpler than you think:

1. Great relaxing shower—yes, do this. Taking time for yourself in a manner that cleanses, relaxes, eases tension spots and gives you time to think—a perfect daily start.

2. Good breakfast—there is an age-old adage that eating a quality and nutritious breakfast will set the tone for your day. Whatever nutrition suits your fancy, this start to the day gives you energy and alleviates sugar dips throughout the early morning to late afternoon. Plus, creating a good breakfast with fresh ingredients just feels so good.

3. Exercise—yoga, cardiovascular activity, playing with kids, extreme housework, mowing the lawn, long walks at sunrise/sunset, intensely passionate love-making; this all qualifies as exercise. Practice it today, and be proud of what happened “today”.

Everything begins with a core thought, turns into a core emotion, then progresses to a core action and result.

The above three ideas are so simple, yet are the most effective way to start every day and have a good day. That is the whole point of habit-forming behavior. If you are having a bad day, you can reflect back to any good thing that happened, even the insignificant stuff, and start over.

Re-frame your attitude, which will have a tremendous effect on both your mental and physical well-being.

The approach is that adopting a new habit begins with what you see when you look in the mirror. The doubt, worry, anxiety, guilt and embarrassment are bound to propel you into the next step of conceiving a new pattern. With that said, it is common that most habits begun on January 1st usually end up in the trash can.

I don’t want to be a naysayer, but years of hearing and seeing good first-of-the-year intentions get sabotaged by limited behaviors gives me the impetus to help in any way I can with a few positive words.

I believe that cooperation, compassion, responsibility and acceptance will set you on your way to start the new behavioral pattern.

The next 90 days are a test. Can you pass? As the holidays are about to begin, the real test actually starts now. Go!


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Ed: Catherine Monkman

{Photos: Pixoto & Wikimedia Commons.}

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