Old habits die hard! I have been chewing on this A LOT in June. When working on shifting/changing/a long-term goal, man oh man does it sing true! This month is testing me big time. Why can’t they just die easy???!!! I shake my fists at these habits I have so tenderly cultivated. Things start to get tough, here I go slipping right back into that old comforting habit, my dear frenemy. Ah yes, warm blankety habit, swaddle me, help me remain where I am. NO! WAIT, WHAT???…this is not the direction I want to go, REVERSE!
Recognition of an old pattern is the first step. Recognition gives you a chance to stop, and create a new good/better habit. Once we are aware, we can address the situation. Can you identify when you are in an old pattern, be aware, accept it, stop, breath, change, step away, do whatever it is you need to do to move forward? It’s a chain reaction of action; move away from your habit, side step it, light on those toes!! DODGEBALL!
A couple of the goals I set my self this year are moving into their next phase. PHASE 2! ENGAGE! I have managed to move through Phase 1 (initiation action phase), I am now comfortable here. It’s time to move it up a gear, prep for change and step back out of my comfort zone again. Here’s when my negative self-talk swoops in, and tries to hold me back. Fear is holding me back. I am holding me back. I have sat at this point previously for so many years, especially with learning to drive. Letting my negative chatter dominate, the ego getting in the way of positive change. The ego doesn’t like change, telling me; I’m crap, that wasn’t good enough, I’m not good enough, you will never do this right, driving just isn’t your thing. ABSOLUTE BS. Driving this month I have had many meltdowns. I have had to work hard at taking a breath, calming my mind and moving forward. Some days I can do it in the car, others I have to do the work once I’m out of the car.
Time to take a cold hard look in the mirror and kick this habit of chat. It’s ruled for too long. I have worked hard at making positive changes in my attitude over the last year and a half, I will not fall down. I am not willing to give up this time round, whatever the outcome. Do you have something you are working towards, are stuck, not sure where to go next, putting it off? Is it your old habits sneaking up on you, holding you back from progressing? Try recognize the pattern, see if you can make a shift forward. One step at a time.
Three other areas in my life I am working on moving onto the next step are; Learing Spanish, budgeted savings, next fitness goal/focus. I broke down each area at the start of the year, mapping a brief outline of each step/phase. I needed to work it out logically, into smaller more digestible pieces so as not to overwhelm myself. Baby steps, pudgy ankles.
In summary, this is what I’m at. Spanish; Phase 1, Duolingo every night for 10 mins. Phase 2, add online course/workbook style practice to Duolingo work. Phase 3, starting classes in July. Budgeted savings; Phase 1, save enough to buy flights. Phase 2, fix budget for trip, stick to monthly savings goal. Fitness goal; Phase 1, pick a challenge in an area I enjoy and am comfortable in, compete. Phase 2, new challenge in an area I’m not so comfortable in, put myself in a more competitive environment, put the work in and compete, I signed up to my first powerlifting competition 🤗 All these smaller incremental decisions lessens that overwhelming freeze.
Try it. Think logically, gain clarity, take small steps forward. I gave myself more time in the comfort zone with my Spanish than with my fitness goals. It’s ok to be moving at different paces on things we want to reach in our lives. But always be ready to move forward once you have exhausted the first step, that’s where the progress lies. Recognizing your old bad habits, and addressing them throughout each stage makes it a little more manageable to break them.
Old habits die hard, but with consistency and perseverance you can overcome anything, truly move forward, and away from what once held you back. Communicate with the people in your spheres/communities about your struggles and wins. Get tips, tools, ideas, motivation, inspiration and energy from those around you. Ask questions, be honest, and most importantly believe in your ability to change.