In a perfect world it would only take 7 days to make a drastic lifestyle change. Change is almost never easy, and I can bet that it won’t happen over night, which is why I call it an adjustment and not a full on change. Take the time to determine what has been holding you back from some of these essential changes and challenge yourself by implementing them on a daily basis. I’ve addressed in an earlier post about leading a more productive lifestyle that it takes 21 days to create a habit according to the many “self-proclaimed internet forum scholars”. However, some may argue that it depends on the task or person. For the purpose of this post I’m going to address 7 general steps that you can tackle one day at a time, at a pace you’re comfortable with!
Sunday: Take the first day of the new challenge you’ve embarked on to get your thoughts and objectives organized. Set goals of what you would like to accomplish on a day-to-day basis, monthly basis, yearly basis and over the long-term. Keep in mind the final product of what you want to accomplish, and take into account each step you are taking now is only going to get you closer to your ultimate goal. When I make goals for myself I think it is important to write them down because I feel like once they are in front of me on paper they have so much more meaning then just letting those thoughts float around my head. Once you have your goals written out make a plan. Your plan is probably the most important part of making a lifestyle change. This plan is what you have to do to accomplish your goals. Something to fall back on when you get off track over time or double guess your abilities.
Monday: High five, you made it through the first day of making an essential lifestyle change! Some say the first step is the hardest one to take. Now that you’ve done that, the rest will be a lot easier, however there will always be obstacles you have to overcome. Take this day to focus on your health. Wellness is so important because it allows us to go out and tackle whatever it is to get closer to our goals. Isn’t it crazy how those fitness models on Instagram seem to have every other aspect of their life in order? A healthy mind and body go so far and by using self-discipline when it comes to our diet and fitness we create regulation and structure within our busy lives and it will reflect on every other task we take on. Along with your initial plan should be a health and fitness goal. Whether you want to bulk up or shed a few extra inches for the summer, a solid workout plan should be put into place. Additionally, we all have guilty pleasures when it comes to making changes to our everyday diet (mine is carbs). Take your weaknesses into account when targeting what you’d like to accomplish when it comes to changing your intake (i.e. fewer calories, more protein, etc.). Some things to add to your lifestyle plan may include:
- Drink more water
- Eat breakfast daily
- Keep a food and workout journal
Tuesday: Take today to evaluate your budget and where you need to be financially to accomplish your long term goals. What ADJUSTMENTS can you make to bring you closer to that goal? Though the majority of us aspire to be in a comfortable enough financial position to vacation as often as we’d like, and indulge in different cuisines and the many experiences that this world has to offer, this requires a game plan. Make a list of what financial accomplishments you would like to accomplish first. Maybe you want a new car, or house, or to start a business. Evaluate your income and consider various options for saving and potentially increasing your income. One of my new favourite examples of budget and savings trackers are bullet journals. Bullet journals illustrate goals, and allow ourselves to visually keep track of our progress.
Wednesday: A good support system goes such a long way when embarking on the challenge of achieving our long term goals. Establish yours and don’t let it go. For some it may be family, and for others it may be close friends. Whoever it may be, the ones closest to us are typically the ones we talk about our goals and aspirations with. The people who would never tell you any goal is too big or too small. These are the people who will keep us on track on days when it’s easier just to follow the crowd, and the people that continuously tell you how much progress you’ve made. Find the people who motivate you most to get out there and do your thing and support them through their’s too!
Thursday: I’m a firm believer in karma. Whether that’s what we call it, or simply being a good person, the energy we put into the world is the same energy that will come back to us. Why not make it positive energy? Practicing gratitude is so important. Be grateful for what we’re given and take advantage of the opportunities we can create for ourselves. Be kind to people, appreciate simplicity, do a good deed, try not to complain. For the past year, I’ve focussed so incredibly hard on creating positive energy and it’s amazing what a difference it makes in everyday life. I wake up in a better mood, and I’m motivated to go out and accomplish my goals while drawing positive people to myself as well as positive energy.
Friday: Work hard and be patient. Results don’t happen overnight, but the crazy people who put their time in and stay dedicated to their goals are the ones that actually make it (go figure)! Keep working hard, waking up early to get the job done, and spending those long nights focussed on the outcome. If your dreams are big enough there will be times you start to doubt yourself, or days when you’re tired of the process. Trust the process, remind yourself why you started and count on your support system. These are the times when you need to refer back to your initial plan and go back to the basics.
Saturday: A common trend throughout all of my productivity posts is self care and rewarding yourself for your hard work. Often we focus more on the outcome and less on how much progress we have actually made. Just a mental shift towards accomplishing our goals takes time and effort, and this is something that must be rewarded whether we have reached our ultimate goal or not. Take this day, at least once a week to appreciate and treat yourself. Find your inner peace whether it’s through meditation, a night out, or catching up on some of your favourite shows or sports networks.