Our brain has a Reticular Activating System (RAS) whose purpose it is to keep us ‘safe’. When we begin to do or be exposed to something ‘different’ (aka ‘outside of our comfort zone’) the RAS turns on the ‘red alert’ signal. Our fight/flight system kicks in and the body/brain looks for ways to get us back to normal as quickly as possible. Most of us call the results ‘self sabotage.’ In reality it was just the RAS doing its job – keeping us safe!
Our brains resist what is ‘hard’ and embraces what is ‘easy’. When we move forward with easy steps, helpful ‘triggers’ and lots of celebration of progress, we create lasting changes. This is true whether we are starting over (again) or starting for the very first time.
Wouldn’t it be cool if you could work with the RAS and actually change . . . without self-sabotage kicking in?
It is possible! HOW??
Keep it simple. . . baby steps.
When we set simple steps – – so simple they seem ‘too easy’, the RAS accepts them. As we consistently do these steps, then we can add the next and the next step and actually ‘walk’ into the changes we want.
The challenge? We don’t thin these small steps are grand enough to make a difference. So, we set a big goal, set off with our hopes high, go at it and . . . usually quit within a couple of weeks. Don’t be ashamed of baby, easy steps. Be consistent and you will add new steps and GROW!! Consistency is far more important than the size of the steps.
Connect these steps to your daily routine (‘triggers’).
Connecting action to a trigger helps us remember our baby steps. I have my supplements, protein shake and small blender all in one area, next to the fridge. When I do one, I do the other.
I set my workout clothes out the night before by my dresser – – easy to see, easy to do. My workout journal is right next to where I workout. I write out my chosen routine for that day to keep me on track. Easy to remember when I have little ‘triggers’ to remind me!
Celebrate your PROGRESS
Don’t wait for the 50# weight loss or the big savings or buying a house (or some other big goal) to celebrate. Learn to applaud your progress as frequently as possible. Share your progress with others. Applaud the progress of others. Learn to see progress, acknowledge it and applaud it – – – out loud! That encourages the RAS that it is doing a good job!
Join me in 2014 as we “Just Start” . . .
- healthy eating (fewer carbs, sugar, more protein, good fats and fiber!)
- fun exercise (starting with the ‘wall’, chair and your kitchen counter – – -wait until you see the videos!)
- seminars and webinars (to connect us together and share ideas)
- nutrition nuggets (money-saving, customizing ideas and stories of how it is working for others)
- releasing creativity (finding ‘fun’ things to do, in addition to our daily responsibilities, actually has health benefits!)
So, 2014 – – – it is our opportunity to JUST START!!