Small Sustainable Steps Can Make a Lifelong Impact.
During the break I was thrilled to catch-up with a few old friends. What a privilege it was to steal some time. I spent New Year’s Eve at an old Dovercourt venue in Toronto – going from upstairs to downstairs with a selection of dance videos from the 70’s on. Rare footage of Neil Diamond’s epic ‘Sweet Caroline’ from when he was not much more than 25 years. I reveled in tripping back into my dancing days! It had been a long time but I still remembered my left foot from my right…eventually! I had forgotten how good it feels to get out of your own head and the pure exhilaration of dancing.
I shared this thought with a client-friend, Karen. Our lazy holiday conversation centred around how she might get into the habit of moving again. I suggested starting with waking up 15-minutes earlier to either walk, or, do stretching and some breathing awareness. I wanted her to work towards a simple, achievable objective. Something she could do from the convenience of home. It was intended to be anything but a tired ‘New Year’s resolution’ doomed to crash and burn. You might refer to my guidance as baby steps. Simple works best when it comes to sticking with any courageous and new behaviour.
It’s been my mantra to pay-it-forward. One of my core values is to support others and to make a difference for people, everyday. My knowledge and training in kinesiology and health psychology was something that I felt compelled to share with others. Then I became my own poster-client. I was feeling fatigued and had sustained an injury. I felt I had lost control. I was committed to sharing my experience and offering support. It has been an eye-opener to put myself in the shoes of those whom I support. This period lasted from Christmas 2016, when I was sick in bed for four straight days for the first time in many years till the holidays of 2018. I had some ok days. I decided to give up playing hockey after twenty-years with the same team. Last summer I took a two-month break from my softball team to heal. The lesson? We need to listen to our bodies and I needed to be mindful of this to stay inspired.
When I didn’t quit on myself, I got one of the sweetest rewards of all. I was recently named to Team Canada for the gold-medal softball competitions this summer in Mexico City. I was stunned. I got invited to a tryout last fall and while I can say I had my doubts, I realized I had nothing to lose but my pride. Going for gold in life or sport starts with taking control and cultivating your internal power. For me, brutal honesty about past failings gave me the edge to move closer to reaching my peak mental and physical fitness.
If you could use a little boost right now, you can start with this simple mental exercise and ask yourself these two questions: 1. “Am I all in for this life? And then 2. “Will I give everything I can to reach my goal?” We’re all masters of making excuses for ourselves.
If you’re still reading that’s great. By working towards establishing a foundation for a vital life you can achieve your full potential. I’m not just talking about a New Year’s resolution. Start by trying to make small yet sustainable steps, everyday for the rest of the year. That’s powerful. It’s also necessary to have trust, accountability and commitment. Throwing in a little bit of gritty energy can help too. How about one brave step forward?
I’m here to help set you up for success. Please feel free to reach out at anytime and we can arrange a time to talk in a safe space firstname.lastname@example.org