Heard this type of challenge before? “If only I could stop drinking”. “No more snacking”, “I am going to start at the gym this week”, “I wish I wasn’t angry all the time”, “I would so love to ride my bike to work”, “I wish I could spend more time with the kids”. Any of these challenges sound familiar? Yet nothing changes or not for very long anyway. We work too much on the “all or nothing” principle and unfortunately the brain does not like to change. Whether you agree or not, the brain is programmed to only do what it has to, no more.
Not only this, but if we are getting a payoff for drinking (calming, confidence, control for example) or over eating (control, endorphin rush etc) or lack of exercise (escape time on Netflix or other screens) than we can find changing the behaviour or mind set much more difficult.
Add to this a lack of a real and positive purpose for the change that is compelling enough, we are caught in a loop that will ensure our success is limited. It can creep up on us. One glass of wine 6 months ago now requires 4 to get the same effect and whoops, the addiction is growing.
Whether it is an excess of alcohol, food, coffee, sugar, wheat, Netflix, gaming, social media, shopping, pornography, anger, abuse, indifference, procrastination, time at work or doing Sweet FA. At another level using too much of things that affect the planet – plastics, fossil fuels, water or laundry detergent.
A lack of water intake, fruit and veg, lean meat, fibre in our diet, exercise, being outdoors, gratitude, forgiveness, learning, inner peace, time with your partner or children or whatever is lacking in your life. And again, at another level not doing enough of the good things that affect the planet – re-cycling, using re-usable shopping bags, taking a train, walking to work or even using a lower emission fuel car.
Rather than needing to create the perfect life with the most compelling outcome – the following is something I have worked on with my clients which is key to breaking the cycle on these mindsets.
Do one or both of the following:
Half the things that are keeping you stuck.
That is right, don’t eliminate it, merely choose the challenge of halving it. You can still have that thing you crave, just less. Make that the challenge. Only have 4 pieces of chocolate, not 8. Only have 2 glasses of wine, not 4. Then, when you are ready, say in a month, half it again. Than in another month half it again, until you feel the amount you are having is OK or you choose all together to stop.
Double the things that will make you happy and healthy
This might need to start with something very small first, as double zero exercise is still zero exercise. So, maybe start with 5 minutes of walking or riding. Then when you are ready double it, and then double it again, until you are happy with the consistent level, intensity and impact of the exercise.
- Create 2 lists – one called “My Half List”, the other “My Double List”. Pick the top three in each list and assess what you would need to do to begin halving and doubling your world.
- Start small and be aware that you have the choice right now to be amazing by being a Half/Double Champion.
- Please share your Half/Double Journey with me. What are you halving? What are you doubling?
- If you need further support on the challenges you face, drop me a line.