12 September 2011

KISS your old ways behind! Four must-do's to create personal change.

lipsYou know you're capable of so much more, but you just can't seem to change, no matter how hard you try.

Often, it's because you are relying on willpower only, and hoping that no temptations will cross your path to lure you from your goal.

There is another way!

A more strategic approach is to get conscious and become aware of the behaviours that are helping and hindering you.  Get clear on what's working, and repeat it!  And eliminate the behaviours that are sending you backwards, creating the guilt, the sense of failure, the disappointments ...

Here's how:  Use the KISS principle to a better future (and it's not what you think).

K:  KEEP the behaviours and people around you that are contributing to your success.  What are you doing that works?  If you are trying to lose weight, consider what has helped (writing a list including loads of fresh foods, shopping on a full stomach, planning your week's menu, taking your lunch to work).  Consider the environment you need to support your success and create it (eat from the same place, keep a fully stocked fruit bowl in full view, bin the poor food choices from the pantry).  Keep close the people who support and encourage you (your walking buddy, personal trainer).  Put in place cues and reminders to encourage you to do what works (set a reminder on your phone to go walking, book an appointment with yourself to visit the health food shop).

I:  IMPROVE the behaviours that are working for you but could be tweaked to leverage your results. What could you do to enhance your results?  Sometimes the only thing holding you back is a lack of the the right skills or knowledge.  Do you need to get additional training, speak to your coach or mentor, or research ways to fine tune what you're doing?  For example, you might know that your daily walk is doing you good, but you might book a personal trainer to find out which activities are most helpful to tone your problem areas.

S:  START doing the things you know you should be doing.  Maybe the lack of the right resources is holding you back - put them in place (hire an exercise bike, go buy sneakers).  Or it could be that you'e missing the right incentive to get or keep you motivated (instigate a weekly clothing reward if you stay on track with your health plan).  Record your activity to keep it visible, and celebrate your successes.

S:  STOP doing the things that are sabotaging your results.  You know what they are!  And if you don't know, start observing the triggers that led you astray (does going for coffee with a friend mean you can't resist the muffin?  Or does shopping on the way home from work result in 3 packets of chocolate biscuits?)  Stop making excuses and just do what you know you need to (set the alarm for a morning walk, pick up the phone to book your next exercise class, shop after dinner).  And stay away from the situations or people that take you off track.  

You can KISS yourself to a whole new way of doing things, and KISS your old ways goodbye.

I'm off to put on my sneakers ...