Changing habits …

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This is a blog about “breaking the habitz” so lets talk about my effort to change one of mine. Its been my intention to shed the added kilos, get fit and feel healthier for YEARS. It feels like a battle Ive had FOREVER. And just when I thought I finally had a handle on it, the handle fell off and I was back to square one again. Life has a way of knocking us down … but what matters most is getting back up again

How did I get started ? … well, Ive been procrastinating on it for a while now but the start wasn’t entirely my own doing. I did need a little help to kick start my motivation. My car has been dying a slow death and I haven’t had the funds to fix it. So when it broke down for a 2nd time this month, I had choices …

  • I could pick up more nursing shifts and run myself down
  • I could go into more debt and stress myself out more
  • I could explore other ways to bring in the money flow
  • I could be without a car and save money and be more active

Not really a hard decision to make … is it ?

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Deciding to get rid of my car and walk to/from work has been my starting point. Its not particularly hard at around 2.5km if I walk the short way and around 5km if I take the scenic route, but getting started can sometimes be an effort …

So, I asked myself … How can I make it a little easier on myself ?

Ive figured out a way to reduce the “OMG I can’t be bothered” thoughts impacting on my motivation too much during nursing night shifts … being organized before my nap has been essential. That way I can literally jump out of bed to the alarm, get dressed and walk out the door before my mind wakes up enough to start thinking. Once I’m out and moving, the body is already in motion and all is good … its working well for me.

Its on the way home after a long night when my body is tired, that I’m aware of how the mind tries to pull me back. I’m slow and I’m weak and so I’m vulnerable. As other walkers keep passing me by thoughts like “hurry up fatso” and “why are you even bothering” or “its too hard, so lets just give up” pop into my mind. I don’t talk like that to anyone else, so WTF am I talking to myself like that ?

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My negative thoughts impact on how I feel, which then reduces my motivation and gives me a bad attitude. I look down more, I smile less and I feel disconnected from other people.

The mind can be our worst enemy as we try to reprogram and change our habits. So its important to observe what we are thinking, then we can make a conscious decision to interrupt the negative thought process.

For me walking home the scenic way helps to flip the thoughts over to “no need to rush Tracey, enjoy the beauty” and “the more you do this the faster your pace will get, so just enjoy the process.” … which makes a HUGE difference to how I feel. I look up and smile more. I make eye contact with people who are passing by, we share our good mornings and I feel a sense of connection.

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Its only early days, but like any new habit the first week is generally the most challenging. So I’m looking forward to sharing my progress next week.

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