Creating routine is crucial to our overall mind, body and spiritual health. When we implement a daily yoga routine or self-care practice, we are acknowledging the importance of taking time for ourselves.
Through my own experience of setting goals and tapering off in the middle, I have learned a few tricks to helping me get back on the horse, and I thought I’d share a few of them with you in hopes that I can assist you in keeping with your new years resolutions and creating habits that stick.
Why does winter make it so hard?
Especially around this time of the year, many of us are setting new goals for ourselves and looking to improve or begin a routine. I myself have been tapping into my yoga practice and making an effort to practice for 15 minutes or more each morning. I’ve also been making an effort to exercise at least 3 evenings a week. If I’m being honest, given the season, this has a bit of a challenge.
When we honor the fact that the environment truly does have an effect on our energy, we can feel better knowing that we are doing the best we can.
In Ayurveda, winter is considered to have the characteristics of Kapha. Kapha is one of the 3 doshas and is governed by earth and water. While the upside of this dosha is structure and longevity, the downside is lethargy and sluggishness. This, along with all of the holiday foods and cravings for a blanket and Netflix has not helped when it comes to motivating myself to get off of my butt and on to the mat. I try to keep this in mind and give myself a break.
Practice praise over pity.
There is always that tiny voice in our head that is either pushing us forward or holding us back. We can call this voice the ego. A lot of times when we hear the term ego, it’s accompanied by negative connotations. Our ego does have the ability to send us negative messages. I call this negative self-talk, and sometimes it can really bring us down. However, our ego can also do the opposite If we train it properly. When we use those voices inside of our head for good, they can be our biggest motivators. This is where the practice of praise over pity comes in to play.
When we practice praising ourselves for our efforts instead of beating ourselves up, it can make a world of difference.
Negative self-talk can be bitter. It is unfortunate, but at times we can be more cruel to ourselves than we are to anyone else we know. Try to flip that self-talk to something sweet. When we are good to ourselves, we feel it in every cell of our body. Our words are where the real transformation begins. The next time you fall off track, try telling yourself that you are human and it happens and that you can always try again. Positivity is key to a long-lasting routine.
One day at a time.
Many times when we set out to do something, we have big plans in mind. We tell ourselves that we are going to work out every day for 3 months or go cold turkey and completely cut out carbs.
It’s is important to have big goals, and as far as dreaming up the reality you want, the sky is truly the limit! However, when it comes to achieving these goals, it’s best to go one step at a time. When starting a new work out routine, instead of aiming for every day of the week, try for 3 days a week. After that just set out to do the minimum and work your way up. 15 minutes of a workout or yoga practice is better than nothing at all. Over time you’ll start to notice how east that 15 minutes it, and you’ll want to kick it up a notch. If you miss a day, take it back to praise over pity and honor yourself for the fact that you will do it tomorrow!
When we go slow and put one foot in front of the other, we’ll be amazed at how far you get.
It’s great to log your progress. I personally like to make a note on my calendar when I’ve done my 15 minutes of yoga in the morning or my 1 hour of dance in the evening. It feels great to look back at the end of the week and see how many marks I have on the calendar.
Sometimes, it’s even nice to log the emotional and physical progress. For example, if you start off a 30-day yoga challenge and log how you were feeling on day one all the way up to day 30 and then look back, it can be really inspirational to see the transformation that has taken place.
Celebrate while you’re doing your work out or yoga routine. Even celebrate after! Get excited! It’s amazing when we set out to achieve a goal and we succeed. When we step into a place of happiness and gratitude for ourselves and what we are capable of, it fuels us with the power to do even more.
Be your own cheerleader every step of the way.
Sometimes, your celebration can involve a cheat day on your eating routine as a reward or it can be as simple as letting out a shout of excitement at the end of every sun salutation! Get creative and be expressive. You are creating the life you want to live and that definitely deserves a round of applause!
Use the Buddy System.
Sometimes, having a partner to help you along the way can make a huge difference as well. If you can get your friends to join you, you are even more likely to succeed and it’s fun to have someone to share your progress with.
Maybe your goals can be met in a yoga studio, or at a group class. Set up a schedule with one of your friends and plan to meet at your local yoga studio for a class 1-3 times a week. If you prefer to be in the comfort of your own home, you can always take turns on who’s house you will work out at.
If you can’t find someone to work out with, consider hiring a private yoga teacher that will come to your home and motivate you to practice. While it can sometimes cost a bit more than a yoga class, you will be getting one on one time and yoga routines that are personalized based on what transformations you want to see take place. Either route you decide to take, teamwork makes the dream work, so let’s support each other!
You can do this!
So, there you have it, a few of my own personal tips on how to stick to a routine. If you have any tips you like to use, I’m always looking for more to add to my repertoire and I would love to hear from you!
Love and moonlight!
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