The Power of Habit: Creating a New Routine
If there’s anything that can be learned from Gretchen Ruben’s “The Happiness Project,” it’s that the smallest of modifications can make the most substantial difference. As the new school year rolls in, it’s a time for new beginnings, new goals, new faces, and new commitments. Although many consider the New Year a time to begin implementing changes for our own betterment, I prefer to believe, as Gretchen Ruben asserts, that September is the newer and arguably better “January.”
Often women are overwhelmed when initially diagnosed with PCOS, and one of our biggest concerns is that we simply don’t have the time to make the changes necessary to segue into a healthier, happier lifestyle. And yet when we step back and take a deeper and more meaningful look at our current lives, it’s apparent that we haven’t put ourselves first when it truly counts. Our happiness may come second, third, or hundredth to a multitude of people, projects, and daily responsibilities. We’re left to feel as if we don’t have the time to make ourselves a priority whatsoever, never mind the central priority.
What we don’t always realize is that self-prioritization isn’t selfish; in fact, it’s quite selfless. The better we feel from the inside out, the more vacant space we’ll have on our plates. It seems contradictory, but in essence, it’s simple. As we begin to implement changes that make us feel more capable, more concentrated, and more rested, we begin to see that we can individually achieve more than we’ve ever been able to before.
Achieving true happiness requires a great deal of introspection and recognition of the things that feed our happiness, along with the things that merely serve to drain it. It’s important to note how you feel once you begin to make health changes—the way you feel after a full night’s sleep, after exercise, after eating a nourishing, well-rounded meal. Use these feelings as motivation to propel you towards making these changes permanent. Identify what brings you joy and satisfaction, and make time for it. Identify what brings you pain, anger, and guilt, and do away with it—or, at the very least, minimize it where you can.
Your goals shouldn’t require farfetched changes, and they don’t have to be impossibly challenging. That being said, don’t fear the prospect of leaving your comfort zone; sometimes taking risks can help us discover things that can contribute to our happiness. Brainstorm the areas that you want to see noticeable improvement, whether it be a healthier diet, a more achievable exercise plan, allocating a block of “you time” each day, et cetera. Set reasonable but motivating goals to foster improvement and help you to feel better about yourself on a daily basis, both inside and out. Self-love is the most powerful tool that we can give ourselves, but it requires effort to be built, earned, and nurtured. So, just as students heading back to school will need to readjust in order to grow and maintain balance, try to view September with this same mindset. Challenging yourself and making necessary changes now means setting yourself up for the brightest possible future—and who knows, you just might feel the positive impact right away.
My Jumpstart Program is a wonderful tool to help you create new, transformative habits and make positive lasting lifestyle change. I invite you to join us. The next Jumpstart Program begins September 14th. To find out more visit http://pcosdiva.com/programs/online-programs/