Thursday, October 8, 2015

Have You Ever Dialed a Wrong Number?

Have you ever dialed a wrong number? Of course you have. If you can remember the old home phone you had, when you redialed the number correctly, your fingers could feel where you made the mistake. Your fingers have muscle memory.

If you play the piano or an instrument the same holds true. If you play a measure wrong, when you play it correctly, your fingers can feel where the mistake was. Your fingers have muscle memory.

Our minds, physical bodies and emotions work this way too. When we do the same things every day, our minds, bodies and emotions want to repeat what they did yesterday.

What if you are trying to make lifestyle changes to benefit your health? Can you wake up on Monday morning and say to yourself, "I am changing everything today?" Have you tried it? If we try to change too many things at once, this massive effort to change everything at once wreaks havoc on our life and all the muscle memory that our body is trying to hold on to. Our mind, bodies and emotions want to go where they were before. They want to react the way they did the last time.

If this is the case, how can we successfully change? It is up to you to reprogram your muscle memory:

  1. You need to make a decision to give yourself time: 3 months, 6 months a year. 
  2. You need to change slowly, choosing 1 to 2 things at a time to work on.
  3. You need to be patient with yourself: mind, body and emotions.
  4. You need to keep repeating NEW good habits so that they replace the old muscle memory.
  5. You need to make a commitment to yourself for the amount of time you have decided on.
  6. You need to allow yourself some steps backwards and you need to forgive yourself when it happens.
  7. You need to know why you want to make these changes and they better be solid reasons or the changes won't last. 
You can do anything for 4 weeks, but can you actually change for good? I believe you can.

The next time you dial a wrong number, think of a habit you want to change and start reprogramming it with a good habit.

Good luck and as always, let me know how you are doing.

Denise Lovat
Certified Health Coach, AADP