Yesterday, while I was working with one of my clients on solution-focused thinking, it struck me how important it is to have a cheerleader in your life. Someone who encourages you, motivates you and celebrates your wins. Someone who helps you pick yourself up again after set-backs, who reminds you of all your worth when you’re feeling down, and who genuinely values you and what you do.
Then I thought: what if we were our own cheerleaders? We could have this cheerleading presence with us all the time, and we don’t have to rely on someone else to be there. This seems to me like a winning formula! How about trying it out? Rather than waiting for someone else to lead the cheering for you, take the DIY approach. If that feels too tricky, practise on a willing volunteer before you embark on being your own cheerleader. Let me know how you get on.
Have you heard the received wisdom that you can encourage a reluctant toddler to like broccoli after introducing it, repeatedly, 21 times? Apparently, it works. And apparently, it’s the same for any habit – whether making it or breaking it. It takes just 21 days or times to change your behaviour. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But some bad habits are like tyrants – they crowd your head and heart so strongly that under no circumstances do they move. They have enjoyed their undisputed reign over you and will not depart easily. And some ‘good’ habits are a struggle to take on: you know it is for the best, but it feels so difficult to accomplish.
How can you crack this stalemate? Each of us will have a different technique, yet there are some common factors to try, whether you are making or breaking a habit.
1. Remember to breathe. This helps to control the anxiety you might be feeling when trying something new or when persevering with will power.
2. Keep reminding yourself of why you are trying to change – whether it is for a particular point in time or for another reason entirely, remember your motivation. If it helps, display these reminders everywhere you look.
3. Go slowly and make very small changes, trying not to achieve everything in one day. Sustainable change usually comes gradually.
Filling life with a never-ending stream of activities can be fun, engaging and memorable. Yet, too often, the stream can become a torrent – and before you know it, you’re living such a busy existence that you’re not enjoying anything, as you’re too tired or wiped out to recognise yet another enriching experience. I saw this quote recently and it really resonated (particularly in my year of many holidays!)…
“A life of turbulence and noise may seem desirable to one who leads it, but wisdom is a pearl found only in still waters.”
This week, how will you create still waters in your life? I'd love to know how you manage it.
Today is World Mental Health Day and this year’s theme is supporting good mental health in the workplace. It’s something that I have been banging on about for years (years!) so I’m delighted to add a few of my well-trodden ideas to the mix.
Focusing on your mental health makes sense – and, for me, the focus needs to be on the health side of things, rather than illness. We can do so many things to improve our mental health, we just have to remember to do them – so I’ve come up with a way to help. If you or someone you know at work is feeling out-of-sorts or a bit low, go through the H.A.L.T. process.
1. H is for hungry. Are you hungry? Would a decent meal or a snack help you feel better? Low blood sugar or a lack of certain nutrients can have a profound effect on your mood. Eat something nutritious, wait 20 minutes, then assess yourself again. Ensure you eat regularly.
2. A is for angry. Are you angry about something? Anger can be frustrating, debilitating and interfering. Get to the bottom of why you are angry and work with that. The effect on your mental health can be very freeing. Seek help from a professional if you’re not sure how.
3. L is for lonely. Do you crave human contact? Would talking to someone or just having some company help you? Seek out a friend, relative, or even a pet and share space together. Humans are social creatures and often need people around them to feel better.
4. T is for tired. Are you simply tired? Have you had enough sleep and rest time? If not, this could be why you’re feeling low, or as if the world is coming to an end. Improve your sleep hygiene and see how you feel in a couple of weeks.
None of this is complicated – we just tend to make it so. That being said, if you need some professional help, please make sure you get it.
Happy World Mental Health Day to you!
When clearing out some old stuff recently, I came across a list I had written in 1999. It was the year I graduated and I was making life plans. On it, there were five things that I wanted to do/be in my life.
In the beginning, I taught just two exercise classes each week; now it has grown to include different types of exercise class (I've taught well over 750 classes in this time!), professional and personal development courses, workshops and retreats – and my downloadable exercise guides, which is something I never imagined I would do. There is still so much more to come and I’m excited every day about where I’ll go next.
To celebrate, there will be lovely things to eat after each of my exercise classes this week, along with the recipe, so you can recreate the magic at home. And if you can’t get to classes, I’m offering 10% off the price of my exercise guides throughout October 2018, which you can order from www.cleanwellbeing.com.
Thank you for your continued support and I hope you will join me in wishing a very happy 6th birthday to Clean Well-Being!
Hi, I'm Joanna from Clean Well-Being.
|Fitness and well-being provider||
Clean Well-being blog