Waiting tables has introduced me to all kinds of people. One couple that I served at Church and State restaurant stand out in particular. Once as he looked at her, he said to me that, “they believe in the power of positive change”. I can only imagine what that meant to them: an obviously in love, slightly older couple. He with frizzy salt and pepper hair and large, chunky framed glasses. She was tall, with very short hair and had beautiful ebony dark skin and sparkling eyes. This memorable couple were a pleasure to be around. Obviously successful, they were into food and took control of their own experience in a very positive way.
They believed in the power of positive change.
Yes, they say old habits die hard. They can linger long past their welcome and are oh so easy to fall back into.
I know I am not the only one in the world who would sometimes just rather not. Rather not cook (and I love to cook) or grocery shop (I REALLY love to grocery shop) and rather not do anything to do with my yoga mat. Somedays I’d rather not take my supplements (read about my routine here) and I would sure rather not write anything. There are plenty of times when I’d rather not do my admin or workout or shower or brush my crazy hair.
I have some old habits. Some deep dark secret habits. Some lazy habits and some habits that I had just before I knew better, or maybe it was before I really cared. My old habits are things that used to give me some degree of comfort, or distraction or relief from fear and anxiety.
Old habits are how resistance has manifested in my life. These are the habits I know I want to change, need to change, should change and work on changing most days. At the most extreme, my old habits get in my way. They hold me back, distract me from my goals and create drama in my lives.
Power of Positive Habits
By building positive habits into my routine, I have created powerful change in my life.
The benefits of a physical practice coupled with a nutrient dense diet show themselves quickly. A diet filled with traditional foods can work with a physical practice to quickly boost energy levels. Dietary modifications can relieve anxiety inducing health issues.
I know that when I worry about anything to do with my health, or even when I feel less then my best, overall I experience more anxiety in my life and struggle to cope with any unexpected challenges.
Positive changes in our lives, such as committing to losing or gaining a healthy amount or weight, reducing toxins in our diet and immediate environment, improving our quality of sleep and cultivating a physical practice are simple steps to more effectively administrate and live our lives.
Replacing Old Habits
For me, what works is crowding out and replacing old habits, foods, routines and even jobs that no longer serve me. Ending toxic relationships are a sure way to usher in positive change, and the same theory can help untangle yourself from an unhealthy situation. Positive change is personal and will vary from person to person, but adopting new routines, people and habits into your lives you can refocus energy into what truly matters to you.
Crowding Out the Crackers
I used to be obsessed with Triscuits. As far as it goes Triscuits used to be one of the worst things I used to eat. All day, I would graze on Triscuits instead of eating the nutritious foods my body needed.
At the time I was teaching spin classes and just beginning to feel the exhaustion that accompanies over-training. ON the outside, I looked fit but on the inside my body was in bad shape. Constantly dizzy, I had to take naps, my period stopped and my mom thought I had an eating disorder. In retrospect, I firmly believe it is truly unhealthy to do that much cardio. However, my diet had to change fast.
What helped me get off the wheat crack was adding in the traditional foods that I still eat today. Broth based soups, traditionally prepared grains and legumes, fermented foods and lots of high quality fats. I eliminated all sources of trans-fat, all industrial vegetable oils, genetically modified foods, most conventional products and feedlot, commercially produced animal products. I essentially kicked the Triscuit’s to the curb.
I would have never gotten rid of the Triscuits if I hadn’t read the ingredients and realized that very little of what I was forcing my body to digest, provided actual value. It became my theory that most of the foods I chose to avoid, waste rather than provide, my energy. By adding more foods into my diet that enhanced my energy levels and were easily digestible made avoiding the foods I used to eat by now viewed as old habits easy.
By eating other foods, Triscuits were crowded out of my diet and pushed out of my life.
Belief in the Power of Positive Change
A bad attitude will kill positive change dead in it’s tracks. Resistance to change, positive or otherwise is part of the human experience. For many, the devil we know sure can beat any devil we don’t. It can also be hard and scary to admit to yourself that you deserve, desire or demand better.
A willingness to believe, an ability to profess your commitment to that belief can be an important first step in allowing positive changes to take place in your own life.
Reinforce Belief to Overcome Resistance
The cultivation of positive habits can work to further reinforce belief, as you begin to experience the benefits that accompany the changes you work to make. A lack of belief that you can reach your goals, can stop you from ever starting.
Overcoming resistance by identifying old habits and cultivating new, positive habits is where change begins.
Believe in your own power for positive change and start setting your own goals today. I would love to hear about them.