Awhile back I wrote about the 10 Habits of Contagiously Happy People. I thought it would be super fabulous to take each habit from a big vague idea and break it down into bite size steps we can start using today! These habits are intuitive, we know what we need to do fill our cup with happiness, but sometimes we all need a little help getting started.
This series is intended to be a helping hand as we practice building our happiness muscles together. This is like brain boot camp, girl! I will be your spotter. We are going to bulk up our happiness muscle mass! You know what I mean, right? Once we create routines, that turn into habits, we are in maintenance mode. That doesn’t mean that we won’t get a little out of shape when life gets stressful, but we will have that muscle memory to help us bounce back and regain our joy faster. People will be like, “Look at the happy on that girl! Wow, beautiful!” And we will be like, “That’s right?! I worked hard to get this happy, thank you very much.”
Taking care of yourself can be defined in many ways. In this habit I am talking about your physical health mostly. I will get into other definitions of self-care in future habits. For now, let’s focus on the basics…
I am not a nutritionist or personnel trainer, nor do I play one on TV. With that disclaimer, I have figured out what works well for my body and I bet you have an idea of what works for yours too.*
*If you aren’t sure, click on each of the 5 topics above for a link to some basics guidelines.
Once we have figured out our self-care goals, we need to take the steps to integrate those goals into each day. But, how?
Going from knowing what to do, to actually making a habit of doing it is the key. Habits are awesome, because once you have developed one, you start to repeat it on auto-pilot. It no longer takes the same level of conscious effort to perform the task that it once did. This frees up your limited will power/energy for other interesting stuff, like setting goals and working toward your big beautiful dreams. If you are interested in learning more about building happy habits, definitely check out The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor.
The key to building a routine is making it easy and repeating it over and over again. Some experts say 21 days, is the amount of time it takes to build a habit, some say it can be done faster. Let’s just pledge to follow our morning and night routines for a month and see how it goes, shall we?
Around the 3 week mark (or even sooner) you will start to notice that you barely refer to your written routine anymore. You can go through the motions of it without having to overthink. A great example of this is learning to drive a car or ride a bike. Something that initially took so much mental energy to learn, becomes second nature.
Just as we talked about in the Edited Year Post, life is a constant editing process. You can expect setbacks that take you back to Step 1, either because you fell out of the habit or because your goals or schedule changed. But, that is totally ok, right? This is a framework for getting back on track quickly and keeping your body as healthy as possible so that you have the energy and foundation to build your other happy habits.
I want to remind you, beautiful, that we are all doing the best we can. People get injured or sick, and that’s okay, when that happens we slow down, rearrange our expectations, start over and keep on going. Life is not black and white. If you mess up, you can start over. If you can only eat healthy some days, but can’t get your exercise in or sleep enough, that is still ok. Better than okay, that is AWESOME. Doing just one of these things, is better than giving up because you couldn’t do everything. Don’t let perfectionism convince you otherwise!
How is your daily routine going? What do you want to add more of? Less of? Send me a picture of your morning/night routines! Let me know if you are stuck with something or getting in your own way. Come on, Let’s do this 😉