Change your habits and change your life

Ryan Donohue, owner of Fitness Formation.

Ryan Donohue, owner of Fitness Formation.

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The ‘New Year, New Me’ annual lottery is well into it’s stride by now.

The time of the year when the regulars look at the newbies with disdain at the fact they had the cheek to use their weights bench.

The time of the year where it’s everybody’s time. Same as it was last year, and the year before that in fact.

This week’s column is going to give you a couple of actionable points to integrate into your daily lifestyle to keep you going forever and a day.

If you’re asking why, well, that’s simple. Next year, there will be no ‘New You’. Just ‘Consistent, normal, carry on as though nothing is different you’. No one wants to start all over again every 12 months, after all.

The one thing that is going to differentiate between average and outstanding results is habit. Creating sustainable habits takes time.

You know the scenario. It’s Monday. You’ve had a bad day at work. The weather is, well, Lancashire weather. Your motivation is low. You decide to skip your workout. You open the cupboard, and reach for the chocolate you couldn’t get rid of quickly enough before January 1.

You tell yourself “one square, that’s all”. “Just the one”. The rest is history along with all of your stocking fillers.

Why? You do so because you don’t have the mindset to fail small. You say to yourself “Oh well. I screwed everything up eating that one chocolate bar, so I might as well start next week”.

No. Not this year. Learn to fail small. Shift your mindset. Kick the “I’ve failed” habit. Monday comes every seven days. “It’s OK to start again on Monday”. A fresh week, month, even number, whatever.

Do not adopt this mindset. Treat every day the same, whether it’s Monday or not. Fail small. Mistakes are proof you are trying. We all make them. One chocolate. One wine or beer. It isn’t the end of the world, and is not going to sabotage your whole year. Or week for that matter.

Create habit number one this week. Continue to follow it for the next two to three weeks, and by then, it should become habitual.

Something you do without thinking about it. Then, move on to the next habit.

Follow this easy system, and change your life.