The Perfect Time to Start a New Habit
April 10, 2020
We are all working to find our new normal during these strange times. While it can be easy to focus on the negative, experts say the best time to create a new habit is when you are out of your normal routine. It may not be easy, but it is possible to create new habits now that will change your life for the better, even after the world starts turning at its normal pace again. Here are some tips to help you get started and be successful:
Focus on one new habit or goal at a time
Perhaps you’ve experienced the disappointment of kicking off New Year’s with 10 resolutions, and only lasting 2 weeks. Piling on too many changes at once can be overwhelming. You will have more success if you focus on adding one new habit at time and giving yourself at least one month with each before adding another. Choose the one you really want to accomplish/ change you are more likely to stick with it.
Create a Personalized Plan
Change can’t happen without a plan. If your goal is getting into shape, make a weekly schedule of the classes you will attend or workouts you will do. Making it a part of your daily schedule will help prevent end of day regret when you “didn’t have time to work out”. If you want to eat healthier, meal plan/ prep on Sunday night so you are not forced with making a healthy choice in the moment you are starving. Making the plan personal to you is key. For example, if you want to run a race but have never jogged, you can seek out workout plans from a personal trainer or online. But if you are not a morning person, following a plan that has you wake up at 5am every day won’t be sustainable. Create a plan that works for your lifestyle and personality.
Create Mini Goals
If your long-term goal is to lose 30 lbs. it can be quite daunting. As part of your plan, break down the goal into more digestible milestones. For example, lose 5 lbs in month one, or in the example of running the race, be able to run a full mile without stopping within 2 weeks. Giving yourself healthy rewards when you reach these milestones can also be a great motivator.
Remind yourself why you are making the change
Keeping your eye on the prize, your long-term goal will help to be a motivator. If you are trying to lose weight to improve your overall health and live longer for your family, keeping that in will make it a lot harder to give up when you are sweating through a tough work out.
Find an accountability partner
Nothing will keep you on track more than having someone to check in with. At the gym, this could be a personal trainer or members of your weekly HIIT class. Even sharing your goals with friends and family can help. Ask them to keep you accountable by checking in on your progress or including them in on the plan for rewards when you hit your milestones.
Keep it Positive
Things may seem tough, but people who are happy and in a positive mindset are more likely to create new habits then those who aren’t.
Not sure where to start?
Here are some things that our Chelsea Piers employees are doing:
Tech Free Family Dinner
Take the time you used to spend commuting to work to have a family dinner. Have everyone turn their phones off and tune out the world while you talk about your days, make plans for future family fun or recount funny family stories. Once the world is back to normal, try to keep it up at least one night per week or on weekends.
Meal Prep to Keep on Track Staying Healthy
Get ahead of the week and the stress of home schooling while working from home, by prepping your lunch for the week on Sunday. Chop and roast your favorite veggies – peppers, carrots, asparagus, broccoli. Use them for salads or combine with hummus and avocado for a yummy roasted vegetable sandwich. Once you are back at work, you can keep it up- it will save you money and calories vs eating out.
Zoom Happy Hours with Far Away Friends
It shouldn’t take a pandemic to make an annual girls trip into a weekly happy hour video conference! Maintaining support and friendships is key right now. Try setting up a call to check in with close friends to give support and share a laugh. It is an instant de-stressor. Don’t end the tradition when the pandemic is over! The one benefit to come out of this is that we are all becoming masters of video conference calls. Even if you drop the call to once per month, the benefits will be there.
Daily Lunch Time Work Out
If working out daily wasn’t a possibility for you before, hopefully you have found time without a commute to work in a fitness class, a walk or a run. If lunch time doesn’t work for you, pick a time that you will be able to stick with once you are back at your normal schedule. Perhaps early morning before the rest of your family is up. The more you can make it a habit now, the easier it will be to continue.