Making Changes – Strategy Hack #1

Hey Folks!

It's been a long time since I've written anything in here - though if you've been keeping your eyes peeled, our Physiotherapists have been putting out some awesome videos going over important topics like shoulder issues and core strengthening.  Head over here to check them out, if you'd lke.

We're already 23 days into January and I've been meaning to write more about making sustainable changes since the new year, so we're going to just stop "planning" to do it and do it.  Today we're going to talk about the first and easiest "hack" to create change.  

Add first.

Seems simple enough, but a large majority of people think first about something they want to STOP doing or REMOVE from their lives when we speak about change. 

I just want to lose 15 pounds
I need to stop drinking during the week
I want to stop arguing with my spouse

You get the picture.  Always based on removing things.  The problem, is that these things are providing us pleasure, whether obvious (cracking into a cold beer) or not so obvious (raised adrenalin levels during a fight with a spouse, the instant pleasure of giving in to treats - a desire of the fat, not you).  

In comes ADDING an activity.  And this is where some eloquence and precision comes in.  

I'm going to add a 30 minute walk in each morning!

Ugh... 30 minutes is a long time and it's cold.  Plus, I need to get ready for that thing soon, and I need to answer Blah Blah on facebook before I forget.  That's a subtle exaggeration, but probably not too far off from some of the defeating mental chatter that goes on in some of our heads, right?  Well then for this person, They need a smaller goal that is still adding.  We're going to ask them to strap on their boots, get bundled up, and just open the door and stand on the otherside of it, looking out into the driveway/street.  Just stand there for 1-5 minutes, and then go back inside.  The mental relaxation alone is going to make huge changes in that persons life.  That's a success.  And success is easy to build on.  Seth Godin has a rule where he does 1 push up, every night.  Just 1.  Unless, of course, he feels like doing a few more that night.  But the threshold for success is set at 1. 

Maybe I'll do one of those cleanses - I heard you can lose 10 pounds in a week!

You can force yourself to do just about anything for a week, maybe even longer, but it's only a matter of time before the old habits start creeping back in.  Because you've been denying ALL those sources of pleasure in your life, and no cleanse that I know of is going to fix that.  

Or maybe there is a way to get us to do things we don't currently enjoy, and to receive pleasure from it... more on this idea in a future blog post 🙂

In the meantime.  Try adding in 1 of the following in your life (whichever seems easiest!):

  • ​a 30 minute walk, every day
  • Start taking Omega 3 fats (we have the best there is at the clinic)
  • Get 10 minutes of solid mobility work/stretching in, every day
  • Try to include a veggie or fruit with each meal
  • Take 3, deep, mindful breaths, every day.

Stay healthy, Friends!

Dr. Adam Ball​