by Michael Plank
Especially if you’ve worked with Coach Jess on nutrition, you know how much we’re into a habits-based approach to change. What does that mean? Habits are powerful. Habits are mindless. Habits are things you do without thinking; even if you’re tired, even if you’re hungry, even if you’re busy. Brushing your teeth is a habit. Checking social media when your alarm goes off in the morning is a habit. Drinking coffee is a habit. They’re automatic.
Most of us want health and wellness to be like that. We want to live a life where eating a balanced meal is a habit, going to the gym is a habit, being hydrated is a habit. We want a life where we can do all the things we need to do to take care of our bodies and minds and have it not feel like work.
That life IS possible! (And we can help you do it). But the best way to start is to start small. Way smaller than you think.
We start habit coaching by working on low-hanging fruit; stuff that you know would be almost mindlessly easy, you just don’t do it yet. Want to be better hydrated? Can you drink 8oz of water between cups of coffee? No? What about 4oz? What about 2oz? What’s the least amount where you know you’ll be successful? Do you want to be more flexible? Can you stretch for 5 minutes after each class you attend? No? What about 2 minutes? What about 1?
This teeny-tiny, step-by-step approach works. BUT, we almost always get pushback. Because does 2 extra ounces of water each day really matter? Does 30 seconds of stretching twice a week really make a difference?
Yes. It does. Not at first… I’ll give you that… but it builds. We’ve seen it. And I bet you’ve seen it too.
Imagine that you’re in a room and there’s a giant block of ice in front of you; it’s huge, 3 feet square. The room is cold – really cold – let’s say it’s 26 degrees. Let’s say you’ve got a button you can push once every 10 minutes, and each time you push it, it will raise the room temperature by one degree. You push it and it goes to 27. You push it again and it goes to 28. You push it every 10 minutes for an hour and nothing happens to that giant ice block. But then you push it one more time and the temperature goes from 32 degrees up to 33 degrees.
You know what’s going to happen to that ice block now, right? You remember science class? Those little teeny-tiny step-by-step incremental changes to the temperature do make a difference. Because now that we’ve hit 33 degrees, as big as it is, as heavy, and solid as it is… as insignificant as one tiny degree is…
Now… that ice is going to melt.