The traffic lights got me thinking!
As I drove during a recent car-trip holiday, there were just a few traffic lights along a rural two-lane, tree-lined route. You could see the lights hanging far in the distance, and there weren’t a lot of other cars on the road.
In these situations, with red lights ahead, if there are no cars behind me, I like to take my foot off the gas and let the car coast to see how far I can get before needing to tap the brake. Or perhaps I need to accelerate again if the light turns green.
“Nailing it” in this silly (or neurotic?) exercise means never needing to hit the brake, maybe saving some gas, and not letting your passengers notice you’re not driving as fast as you possibly can. It’s a fine line.
As I went through this maneuver a few times, I started thinking about the year: the goals I’d set, the New Year’s resolutions I’d made, the intentions and follow-through plans to create the habits I wanted to put in place.
Coasting, braking, or accelerating into red lights……….
It was all a perfect analogy for a mid-year review, even in August!
Was I coasting along with new habits well-integrated into my days and accomplishing what I set out to accomplish this year?
Had it been a stop/go/stop/go year so far with too much braking? After all, flow and momentum require coasting and then accelerating into success.
Was I living up to my motto of creating a better life, one habit at time?
You might wonder why this is my motto when really there are so many possible ways to frame a motto. Let me share why I chose this one.
Every dream, goal, intention, or change we seek all start with habits. Everything we do all day long are habits. Yes, everything. Even though you may not realize this.
Helpful or not, we are creatures of habit. And if you want self-improvement and a better life, it’s created through habits.
You may or may not have noticed that for a while now I’ve been calling myself a Healthy Habit Coach. My friend Jon asked me why and what it meant. He was having trouble getting some new behaviors to stick and wondered if I could see the glitch in his plan.
I was grateful for his question. It allowed me to think through my WHY and then naturally share my answer with you.
I make habit changes in my own life.
Better life one habit at a time, right? And life can always be better.
Besides having learned about, read about, and most importantly experienced in my own life the enormous benefits of knowing HOW to make habit changes, I totally love helping other people on their self-improvement journey.
It is much, much easier to know WHAT you want to change than HOW to make the change. Habit change is part science and part art and must be individualized. Yes, personalized in ways that work for YOU!
So here’s a question for you. How’s your year going so far?
Did you start off with lots of green lights and coasting down the road of 2022, but then red lights appeared and you’ve stalled out on your plans and changes you wanted to make?
Are you thinking it’s a motivation issue? I can GUARANTEE you that it’s NOT motivation or lack of anything other than knowing HOW to make habits stick.
Once you get the hang of habit change, it’s fun and it opens up a whole new world of possibilities for self-improvement.
Building new habits, achievements, and skills takes time, but it doesn’t take forever. Especially when you learn about how making habit changes work.
I’m here to help you improve your life one habit at a time.
P.S. One book I recommend is Atomic Habits by James Clear. It’s an easy read and a great start on the journey to understanding why you do what you do and how to make habit changes stick.
If you feel stuck and need additional support to adopt a new healthy habit or routine, consider working with me. We can partner up in setting goals, drawing on your skills and strengths, and implementing strategies to help you find your way to lasting healthy success.
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For over 15 years, Shelli has been a freelance writer and wellness habit coach on Joyinmovement. She writes about brain fitness, creating a healthy lifestyle, traveling the world, and making positive habits stick. Stop procrastinating! Take action, join her free newsletter.