I hope you’re enjoying this great summer. I have been having fun at the beach with my grandson who is now a year old. Wow, babies change so much in one year.
Since I am taking a Level 3 Tapping class and Food Photography class in August, I am doing the Summer Cleanse a little later this year.
The dates for the Summer Cleanse – Revitalize Your Small Intestine will be Mon – Fri August 21-25.
The markets will be overflowing with vegetables and it will be a great time to come back into balance. I invite you to join us for this refreshing end of summer recharge.
Summer is a time of celebration. In today’s blog I explain how celebration can be used to increase your motivation.
Wouldn’t it be nice if you felt motivated to eat healthy foods, exercise regularly and meditate? Of course we all want that but unfortunately we don’t always feel inspired and will power only goes so far. It’s hard to stay motivated if we rely on willpower alone.
In order to create new healthy habits we have to rewire our brain.
What do I mean by that? In our brain we have neural pathways for the thoughts, feeling, beliefs and behaviors we do regularly. Like a well-worn path in the woods, these paths in our brain are easy to travel down. There is momentum and it’s easy for us to keep doing what we have always done. But the good news is they are not “set in stone.”
One of the most extraordinary discoveries of the 20th Century was neuroplasticity. It says the brain has the ability to reorganize itself by forming new neural connections throughout our life.
Neuroplasticity is a fancy way of saying that our brains can change.
If we want to create a new behavior or change a belief we have to open up a new neural pathway to create a new habit. Initially it takes some concentration but once we have traveled down that path a few times new neurons connect to one another, forming pathways that relay new information. You literally change your brain making the new belief or behavior easy and long lasting.
Celebrating progress, small or big, retrains your brain and keeps you motivated.
Do You Celebrate Progress?
There are 3 common ways we respond when making progress:
Say nothing: ignoring our progress
Criticize ourselves: I could have done it better or why didn’t I do it sooner?
Tell ourselves it’s not enough: there’s so much more to do or I won’t be able to stay with it.
There is no reinforcement for taking steps toward our goal. We are in a “could have done it better” society. We are also taught not to “toot our own horn”. The problem with thinking I could have been better is, it’s always true. We can always be better but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t celebrate along the way. For many of us there is an energy of I didn’t do enough and I don’t deserve yet. When I do better I’ll celebrate…
We have a police state in our brain that’s like a mean little league coach with a child who has trouble hitting the ball. The child finally hits the ball and the coach says, “its about time”.
When we train our brain to celebrate progress it is easier to make lasting changes and it’s way more fun along the way. If we praise ourselves every time we do something good, big or small, (example: meditate, yoga, eat consciously, go to bed early) we get a major boost in our motivation. We create new neural pathways of PLEASURE for taking care of ourselves.
How To Practice Celebrating Progress
If you want to make healthy changes in your lifestyle it’s important to notice where you’re coming from. If you’re coming from a place of hating your body and you want to make changes because you hate where you are right now, that’s not healthy and not sustainable. It’s better to come from a place of I’m doing this to honor and support myself. Make changes because you want to love and nurture yourself.
- If you want to take yourself out for a walk 3 days a week do it because you love doing it the way you would love taking your dog for a walk.
- The first day, after the walk, celebrate saying “I am awesome, I did it, I am a rock star,” do a happy dance. Feel the energy of having done it and notice what happens. Don’t listen to the voice that says “yeah but you only did it once” or some other reason to not celebrate.
- The next time you go for a walk celebrate, even if it’s a week later.
Soon you’ll be excited to walk because of the good feelings your brain has connected to it.
- If you want to eat 5 cups a vegetables a day. First eat them because you love taking care of your body and giving it a chance to feel good. Feel how much you want to support your cells,.
- Choose the vegetables you enjoy the most and make them taste good. Click over to my blog for recipes.
- Every time you eat any amount of vegetables celebrate, tell yourself how great you are for doing it. Shower yourself with love.
Before long you’ll crave vegetables for the energy they give you and the loving feelings associated with them.
- If you want to have a daily meditation practice, choose to do it because you like the idea of connecting to the divine intelligence within. Do it to feel more peaceful and aligned in your life.
- After your first meditation session celebrate. Tell yourself you are an amazing person for taking the time to connect with your divine self. Feel the love your inner being has for you.
- Next time you meditate even if it ‘s a few days later celebrate again, allow the love you have for yourself to really sink into your body.
In a very short time you’ll be inspired to meditate to experience the peaceful connection to your divine self.
In conclusion…Start celebrating your progress. Keep celebrating every time you make any progress at all. Each time you will create new neural pathways of pleasure for your healthy behavior. You’ll find it easier and more fun to make changes. Celebrating been very helpful for my clients and me. Let me know how it goes for you.
“The motivation is in my heart to work toward my goals and my dreams.” – Nonito Donaire