Body, Mind, Spirit Magazine

How to Look Your Best and Radiate Positive Energy in 2012

By Jamie Koonce @charcuterielove

How to Look Your Best and Radiate Positive Energy in 20122012 is YOUR year to shine!

The most popular New Year’s Resolutions for people year after year are to lose weight, start working out on a regular basis, manage their finances better, and spend more quality time with friends and family.  But unfortunately most people break their resolutions after the first week in January and subsequently never reach their goals.  If you’ve ever set a goal for yourself, and then totally bombed out… in doing what you needed to do to reach that goal (who hasn’t ever had that experience?), you’re aware of how incredibly frustrating it can be.  Each year you make the same New Year’s Resolution and the same thing happens all over again — self-sabotage and failure to implement the daily habits needed for self-improvement.

In this post I’m going to share with you a few secrets for obtaining your ideal body composition (losing weight, eating better, working out, etc.), which will ultimately lead to you feeling healthier, happier, and more positive in 2012.  If you’re feeling bloated and lethargic, there’s no way you’ll be able to look your best and radiate positive energy; if you take the time for self-care and proper nourishment, you’ll look your best and feel more positive.   I’m speaking from my own experience (things that have worked for me) — not from a bunch of generic “self-help” info you might find in the mass media.  So listen up!  This is what really works.

1.  Ask and you will receive.

This goes for just about everything you can imagine.  For instance, if your New Year’s Resolution is to eat a gluten-free diet and you are at a very non-gluten-free restaurant with friends or family, ask the waiter if a special dish can be prepared for you.  Oftentimes, all that would be required to make a dish gluten-free is to leave the croutons out of the salad and substitute broccoli or a baked potato for the roll or breadsticks.

As for working out more, if your excuse is that your spouse doesn’t work out or you can’t just leave your kids at home while you go to the gym, you’ve simply got to ask for some time to do your fitness routine.  Ask your spouse, a friend, or a sitter to watch the kids while you hit the gym, practice yoga, or go for a run.  If you really want to do your workout on a regular basis, you’ve got to make time for it and ask others in advance if you need assistance in getting away from the house.

2.  Clarity is power.

You have to know specifically what you want, or you won’t get it.  Setting a goal to “eat healthier” is setting you up for failure because this not specific enough.  You’ve got to set firm guidelines as to what “eat healthier” actually means.  For you, perhaps “eat healthier” actually means you’re going to start eating eggs and vegetables for breakfast instead of loading up on sugars and then crashing by mid-morning.  Or maybe it means you’re going to stop snacking on chocolate late at night and start drinking coconut water kefir in the mornings.  Get crystal clear on exactly what “eat healthier” is for you, put together a meal plan so that you know exactly what you’ll be eating each day and how your meals will fit into your routine, have everything in writing, and check in on a daily basis to make sure you’re following the plan.  Eventually your new healthier way of eating will become part of your daily habits and you won’t have to think about it so much.  It will just feel natural to you, and you will no longer crave the foods that your body doesn’t need.

Likewise, if your goal is to “start working out more,” you’ve got to get clear on what exactly this entails.  Are you going to get up 5 days a week and walk for 60 minutes from 6 AM – 7 AM around your neighborhood before you go to work?  Or are you going to start going to a yoga class at 6 PM every day after work?  Will you play tennis every Saturday morning with your next door neighbor?  Envision yourself in peak fitness, being physically active 5 – 6 days a week.  What activities are you doing?  Write down the day, time, and place where you’re going to do your fitness routine, and check in every day to make sure you’re following the plan.  Again, once this routine becomes a daily habit, you won’t have to think about it so much.  Working out will feel just as necessary and essential to you as showering and brushing your teeth.  But before that stage happens, you’ve got to get clear, set up a daily plan in writing, and stick to the plan even when some days inertia might cause you to feel like you’d rather be on the couch watching TV and eating cookies.

3.  If you should, you must.

Have you ever caught yourself saying or thinking to yourself, “I should eat a salad, but the pizza looks good.  I should skip dessert, but these chocolate chip cookies smell great,” or “I should get up and exercise, but it’s more comfortable to sit on the couch and watch reality TV.”  If you have a feeling that there’s something you should do, but you’re putting it off for “later” or “tomorrow,” you must do it now.  Believe me — you’ll feel relieved when you do it.

4.  Know that reasons come first, and answers come second.

If you don’t know why you want something, when you run into a challenge there is not enough motivation to overcome the challenge.  Write down at least 10 reasons why you want to achieve a certain goal, and keep that list with you at all times so you can remind yourself of your why every time you feel challenged or are tempted to give up.  Reminding yourself of your reasons for doing something will help you find the answers you need to overcome the challenge.

5.  You have to have an action plan (with back-up plans in case one plan doesn’t work)!

If you’re confused about what the actual steps are that you need to be doing each day (AKA exactly what the right meal plan for you might look like, what kind of fitness plan will be most effective, how to fit it all into your schedule, how to manage cravings and get through challenging situations, etc.), this is where I strongly recommend working with a health coach who can guide you in a supportive way.

Successful business owners know that in order to increase their success in business, they need to work with a business coach who can see through their blind spots and help them implement an effective action plan.  Likewise, anyone needing help with their finances should consult with a financial adviser.  It’s only logical that if you want to set up an effective action plan to meet your health & fitness goals in 2012, and you haven’t achieved the results you wanted with your own action plan in the past, you should seek expert guidance.  It will save you from the headaches and frustrations of trying things that don’t work or trying to implement a plan without any support.  If hiring a personal health coach sounds like it might be right for you, click here for more information and how to set up an appointment.

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