Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Trigger Your Habits!

Hey Motiv8ers!

We try to check up with Motiv8ers who are missing the workouts and give them a little push to get back out.  Most of you have gotten these emails.

We do our best to keep the Motiv8tion high!  After all, it's in our name!

But Motivation works only for a little while.  It is only good for short term success. 

We need to transform that Motiv8tion into a regular habit in order to continue seeing the same success we do in the first few weeks of the workouts.  A regular habit of making your 3-4 workouts per week, staying hydrated, eating a whole food-based diet and staying focused on who you want to be are what turns a Motiv8ed person into a Transformed Motiv8er!

What is causing once motivated individuals to get so unmotivated?  Why do we start off with such great intent of getting healthy and then just end up falling off the wagon?

Here's the thing.  Your health MUST be a priority above all other things in your life.  Why?

Because at the end of the day ONLY YOU have control over it.  Your boss, your spouse, your doctor and anyone else in your life isn't going to reschedule a lost workout.  YOU have to.  So make time for it and schedule EVERYTHING else around it.

Afterall, if we aren't healthy how are we able to give anyone else our best?  How do we perform at work, how do we give our children the attention they need, how are we able to stay mindful in our relationships?

So here's an example of a priority list (yours may differ but your health should always be at the top):

  2. My family
  3. My work
  4. Personal growth
  5. Helping others
  6. Giving back to my community

You get the idea….

We create habits and routines that drive ALL of our behavior around the things most important to us.  If we have work at the top of our Priority List for instance we:

  1. Make sure we get up at 6am to get ready for work.
  2. Make a habit of leaving at a certain time every day to show up on time
  3. Regularly meet with our boss to understand what is expected of us and get feedback about our performance
  4. Learn on-the-job skills to become better at what we do and more efficient during our workday

Why do we do these things?  Well because we've made "work" our top priority.  If something like personal growth is lower down on the priority list how likely is it that we'll challenge ourselves to read more books, or take more classes or research more articles/studies?  We may set habits to do those things but not with the same focus we'll set habits for our #1 priority!

Ok so we've made our health our top priority and we've decided to start making habits but how do we really do that?

Most of us start from the wrong end of the equation:

So here's the equation: motiv8tion + ability + trigger = behavior 

You've got the Motiv8tion or you wouldn't be at Motiv8!  You have the ability because we create the workouts for you, setup times that work with your schedule and are there to coach you every day.  So the last part of your behavior change is...


After I________ I will_________!

Ok so here's an example.  Let's say getting to your SET is your habit you want to create.  Here are a few small triggers to help you get there.

After I Hit the Snooze I will Sit up!
After I turn the lights on I will put my workout clothes on!
After I drink some water I will eat a banana!
After I brush my teeth I will grab my keys!

This sounds really silly but I promise it works!  

The reason is you are creating an association of your new habit with an existing habit. Making it an easy add-on to an existing habit creates a quick and painless way to ensure you perform the habit over and over without fail.

FACT: The easier a habit is (good OR bad) the more likely you are to continue it!

Here's the great works the opposite way too with bad habits!  I like martinis (I used to drink one every night after work during my corporate days) BUT, I DON'T like to drink them if it takes a long time to make them so.....

I put the gin on the top shelf in a hard-to-get-to cabinet, it's in the back of the cabinet so I have to move bottles around to even make sure I have some, I put my shaker and martini glasses in the dining room, I have to go thru a whole series of behaviors to even get to the point where I'm able to MAKE a martini.  The martini habit is totally GONE at this point.  

Triggers don't have to use association but those are the most effective.  You can also use things like:

  • written notes
  • phone reminders
  • an accountability buddy to call or text you
  • a family member to ask you how your training is going
  • a diary or food journal to remind you about good habits

BUT, the KEY is the EASIER it is, the more likely it is that the behavior will continue.  So think about what has become automatic for you.  Don't start a diary if you've never done a diary WON'T be successful.  Don't use written notes around your house if you won't be mindful of WON'T be successful.  The best you can do is find a current behavior that has become a habit for you and associate it with the thing you want to change.  That is your best trigger!

NEVER forget that without celebrating the little behaviors you are trying to make habitual, your focus and passion will fade as well.  So tell yourself, "I'm awesome" whenever you succeed at your new habit.  Of course we'll help you with this one too! :-)

See you soon!

- Coach Joe

No comments:

Post a Comment