Heathy Habits suck. Agree? If so, these lessons may be helpful to you. In the book Healthy Habits Suck, Dr. Lee-Baggley gives us the following practices and ideas to help us maintain our healthy behaviors.
1. Healthy habits go against our human nature which is why it is hard for us to stick with them
The author, Dr. Lee-Baggley, gives the example of two people in the wild running from a bear- person #1 went for a run in the morning and person #2 slept in, who would be more likely to have the energy to outrun the bear? The person who slept in and saved their energy. Saving energy is a survival mechanism that healthy habits frequently contradict.
2. Find the value behind your goals
Why do you want to develop healthy habits? Dr. Lee-Baggley suggests you find a deeper meaning than just to become healthy or to lose weight. Try to attach values to your healthy goals such as: when I keep up with my healthy habits, I can show up for my family better or exercising everyday helps me do better at work.
3. Practice the 90% rule
When you decide your goals, ask yourself if you are 90% sure you will be able to achieve them. This rule plays on the fact that success breeds success and failure breeds failure. When we feel like we are going above the mark, it motivates us to do even better, and the opposite when we are under-performing.
4. The Arm Test
Try this: tell yourself you cannot lift up your arm while you lift up your arm. Can you do it? This practice serves as a reminder that the voice in your head isn’t always right. You don’t need to believe you can do something to keep doing it.
Dr. Lee-Baggley describes a study where two groups were asked to take on an impossible puzzle. The first group was given positive instruction “it’s okay if it takes a while, this is a difficult exam for everyone” whereas the second group was not. Although the puzzle was unsolvable, the first group worked at the puzzled for longer with a much more positive approach than group 2. Being compassionate with ourselves helps us to face more difficult problems and be less likely to give up.
What do you think of these ideas?
Thank you for reading,
Disclaimer: I have never been to France, however, these are lessons I have taken from the book Home Sweet Maison: The French Art of making a Home
1. Have Dedicated Rooms:
As supposed to open floor plans in a modern American home, the traditional French home keeps each room a separate space. The reason for this being that every room is a dedicated space for a particular activity. The kitchen is for cooking, living room for entertaining and so on. The French believe that it is important to focus on one stimulus at a time. One should not cook while talking to friends but rather make them separate events. This type of separation in activities allows for us to be more present in the moment and truly experience each part.
2. Your Entry Way is Important:
Your entry is the room you enter as you walk into somebody’s home. In the states, it’s usually a place to take off your shoes or hang your coat. In a traditional french home, your entry way is much more than that. This is a place where you showcase your favorite art or photograph. It’s a place to showcase an event that has transformed your life. Only one’s favorite pieces or important experiences is shown at the front. It is a great talking point for people who come in as it says a lot about the person’s home in which you are about to enter.
3. Control and Mindfulness
Everything in moderation. The author of the book describes how her French husband came to New York with her, didn’t change what he ate, yet he had gained 15 pounds within the first year of moving. Turns out, we have much bigger portions than the French. Who knew? In their culture, it is frowned upon to eat without control. Food is eaten mindfully as is the consumption of alcohol.
Which of these ideas do you think could benefit you in your home?
Thanks for reading,
Browsing on YouTube, I came across a video titled “the 12 habits that changed my life”. Expecting a list of habits that changed this person’s life, I was surprised when the narrator actually confessed that there weren’t 12 habits that actually changed his life but his perspective. He had dedicated his year to 12 different 30-day challenges from taking cold showers every day to waking up at 5a.m. Everyday.
What did he learn? Habits that are life-changing are different for everyone. Waking up at 5 a.m. actually didn’t make him more productive, journaling didn’t change him as much as exercising everyday. This does not hold true for everyone. Journaling may be life-changing for you, but like medication there is not a one size fits all solution.
Applying this to my own life, working out everyday is something I used to strive to do as I saw this habit transform the life of my friends and family, however, it has never been a sustainable habit. I know I can dedicate at least 3 days a week to the gym since fitness is important to me, but I have other priorities such as volunteering and creating things that I also value and need to make time for that allow for my soul to thrive.
So what habits are life-changing for you? Don’t be taunted by people who wake up at 5 a.m. and say this has been life-changing for them. This does not mean that it will be the same for you.
Test out new habits and see what works best for you. Maybe even try a few 30-day challenges and see what sticks and makes you feel like you are not only growing but enjoying yourself in the process.
Thanks for reading,
As 2019 is coming to an end, we begin to consider our resolutions for the New Year.
It’s safe to say we all would ideally love to live our “dream lives” yet life and comforting excuses have continued to get in our way.
Going into our next chapter, 2020, it’s so important to reflect on the year that just happened. What did you accomplish? How did you grow? What were some of the best times and worst times? Why? What habits did you continue or start? What are you proud of? What lessons did you learn?
Now diving into your goals for 2020, consider the following:
What’s one word you would like to be the theme for 2020? I was talking with a friend who told me her vision for the year was “french.” To her this means living in simplicity, dressing modestly and eating more mindfully.
How will your day to day life look like? If you are already dreading your approach to your goals, it’s likely that you will give up before you achieve them. Fall in love with the process. Get excited about new habits and routines. Make them fun.
Use a habit tracker. One of my best friends got me a habit tracking journal for the new year. They are amazing tools to help you notice patterns within yourself and get you motivated to stay on track. Achieving mini-goals along the way helps you achieve our bigger goals.
If your 2020 was a chapter in a book, how would it be written? What character will you play? What kinds of adventures will you go on? Who will you meet? How will you affect the other characters? How will you transform- internally as well as externally?
Thanks for reading. I hope your 2020 is all you are dreaming of and more.
Happy New Year 🥳
I’m subscribed to Abraham Hicks daily quotes and if you are not, I highly recommend them. Their quotes reveal great truths and inspire me every day.
This morning, the quote they sent said this:
“…And if you know life is supposed to be fun, you know more than almost anybody else knows.”
When’s the last time you did something purely for fun? Not out of obligation? Or if it was out of obligation, what did you do to make it fun?
Yesterday morning the newsletter they sent said something along the lines of “by having more fun, the more productive you become”
Work hard, play hard. The more we do things out of pure enjoyment, the better we are at approaching our harder tasks.
Take a break from the go, go, go. Read a book not to increase your knowledge but to laugh or feel something.
Go for a walk, not to lose weight but to hear the sounds of the birds and feel the breeze.
Draw something. Not to prove your artistic skills, but to allow your soul to express itself.
Life’s not all about achievement, and ironically by having this perspective, you will achieve more and be less likely to burn out.