Last week for Oklahoma Women Bloggers I wrote about “Getting Started”. So this week I wanted to talk about how to keep it going. For most people, myself included, this can be just as hard as starting. We are all full of optimism and drive at the beginning of a new year, but come the middle of January we start to slow down and fade out. I have noticed this more in my workout routine than in my writing routine, since I prefer to write instead of exercise.
I had a book tour September through December and it left little time to work out. Or at least that’s what I told myself. Basically, I found myself looking for houses in excuse land. I did work out some, and it was good enough to keep the weight off I’d already lost, but it was far from routine. So how do we keep going after the excitement of doing a new thing wears off?
Keep your accountability buddy accountable: As I said in “Getting Started” having someone keep you accountable for your word count, mile count or whatever is a good way to reach your goal, unless that buddy isn’t doing his/her job. Do not be afraid to fire your accountability buddy and make sure you find someone who’s in it for the long haul and knows that occasionally being hard on you for not doing what it is you’re supposed to be doing is just the thing you need.
Look at the hard truth: I don’t know how many times I have set out to lose weight. Every time being the “last time”, only to fizzle out after a few weeks. Until last summer, that is, when I went with my family to the base of Heart Mountain in northwest Wyoming. I knew instantly that I wanted to hike to the top of that mountain. But there were a couple of people, whose opinions I value, who thought that I couldn’t do it. That was a huge eye-opener for me because they were right. How many times had I told them I’m going to do something only to not follow through? How many times had I quit? Honestly, more times than I’d like to admit. So every time I don’t feel like working out, I remember that mountain and what “they” said and I know I must get to the top. I don’t want to be a quitter.
Make a chart: I am a visual person, I need to SEE that I’m making progress. I write down the miles I walk every day and chart my weight so I can see my progress. When you see that “Miles Walked” line go up, while that “Weight” line goes down, you’ll want that to continue.
Forgive yourself: What you do TODAY is the only thing that matters. Dwelling on the fact I let my stamina slip during the course of my book tour won’t help me get my stamina back. Instead, I look at what I can do today to work towards my goal. Leave the past in the past and look at every day as the start of a new year.
I do hope these tips help keep you motivated and moving towards your goals. Good luck.
Heart Mountain - I will make it to the top.