How do you get comfortable with being uncomfortable???

Okay, I get it. NO one likes to change.  Actually, we all have a physical reaction when something changes, good or bad.  We’ve all heard about the effects of stress on our bodies and the damage it can do?  Well what causes stress… CHANGE!  So any common sensed individual would be screaming right now, so WHY WOULD I WANT TO CHANGE?  Because some changes, while they may be difficult for us to go through in the moment will BENEFIT our overall health, both physical and emotional, long-term.  Sometimes we have to step back and think of the bigger picture…

What have you been wanting to change in your life?  There must be something!?  I am always a body in motion.  I am growing, learning and changing every single day.  Some may beg to differ that I will change in my personality, ahem ahem my father (who I live with!) lol, but for the most part, I am willing to adapt!  😛 Do you want to change your body?  Eat better? Give up smoking? Save more money? Get out of debt?  Well… you’re going to have to change something to get to that goal, because right now WHAT YOU’RE DOING ISN’T WORKING.  I don’t mean to CAPS yell at you.  Well, I guess I do, but it’s just so you can understand!  You really have to look internally and think about what the cause is.  Why isn’t what you’re doing to work toward your goal working?  Obviously something isn’t working!  We can all come up with excuses, “Well so and so brought in a cake last Friday, and I had to eat some or they would be offended” or “My friends wanted to go shopping, and I couldn’t just go and not buy something”.  There is always an excuse so that we don’t have to change.  It’s our “scapegoat”.  What we need to stop doing is looking at others and start looking at ourselves.  Because, for the most part, that’s where the stem of the problem is.  And if you aren’t willing to change your habit or behavior, then things will NEVER change, and could even get worse.  For example, bad eating habits… you keep eating poorly or making excuses, you’re going to continue to gain weight or, even worse, could develop a health condition.  If you don’t stop spending money, you’re just going to go further and further into debt.

We have to get a little uncomfortable to get what we want!

 

Now, I do a lot of personal development.  I listen to a lot of podcasts talking about this idea of change, and that we need to change.  We should work  to create new habits, etc.  Some of them get me so fired up, but then they don’t follow through on giving me the tools to do so!  I still love them though.  They’re like the cheerleaders to the tools that I’ve collected in other places!  I’m going to share some tips that have collected and that have worked for me.  They may not work for you… but I know I’m a pretty tough cookie to crack, so if they work for me, they might be worth a shot in giving them a try.  These are pretty amendable, so they could be transitioned for different situations.

·         You have to more than one goal.  I’ve said this before.  You can’t jump a staircase, or a mile.  You have to take it ONE STEP at a time.  What does one step entail?  It’s basic, I know.  It’s putting one foot in front of the other.  But each of those steps is a goal to get you to the end point.  I try to think of it like a staircase.  I start with my main goal.  And then I look at it in pieces, what is it going to take to get me to that goal?  I then think of a mid-point and then work my way out from there.  I take as many steps as I need to succeed.  It’s going to be individual for each of you.  As an example…. My dog needs to lose weight.  Here’s his step chart!

 

o   Lose 15 lbs Weight (2-3 months)

     §  Go for 2 10 minutes walks twice a day (week 4)

·              Cut back dog food by ½ cup (Week 3)

                      o   Go on a 10 minute walk twice a day (Week 2)

                              §  Cut back dog food ¼ cup in morning (week 2)

·                                        Walk fumble to the end of the driveway 3 x day (Week 1)

                                                    o   Cut back dog food ¼ cup in the evening (week 1)

As you can see… I created a step chart, and then I added a timeline for each item! I also set realistic timelines.  I have never had a dog lose weight before, let alone a 200 lb creature.  So… I set my goal time a little extended.  I knew how to manage his food, and I know his walk schedule and that we had to increase his resistance for walks.  Change was uncomfortable for him.  He hates walks.  He was starving and asking for more food.  BUT, I didn’t give into him begging.  It was uncomfortable for him because he was hungry and his schedule was messed up.  It was uncomfortable for me because A. I had to change my schedule to walk him, (as well as my dad) and B. we had to say “no” to him when he was begging.  I kept thinking that I wanted a dog that was going to be around longer… and then it hit me.  My goal wasn’t for him to lose 15 lbs.  It’s bigger than that, it’s for him to be around longer and enjoy his doggy life.

Now, I know this is a silly example.  But it’s easy to understand for the steps.  Does it?  Please let me know

·         YOU HAVE TO step out of your comfort zone.  One of my goals is to meet new people, and make some new friends.  I have to step out of my comfort zone and put myself out there to do this.  I’m not going to attract friends while sitting at my desk, or in my house on the weekends.  I have to constantly talk to strangers.  I KNOW this is something we are told not to do as children.  However, I know my Turbo Fire and Les Mills moves!  I can bring it if I need to! 😛 I also know who I shouldn’t just go up to and strike a conversation with! Lol.  I have also stepped out of my wheelhouse and have gone to a few meetups from meetup.com.  To me, this is the equivalent of blind dating for friends.  It is NOT easy! And it’s hard to do on your own, but I did it!!  And I will continue to attend them!  It’s a great way to meet new people!

·         Visualize.  We can all set action statements.  My goal is… However, I think it’s important to give a reason why.  And I think it’s important to rephrase into as much of a positive statement as possible.  When I succeed, I will… For example…. When I lose weight, I will be able to play with my children outside.  Put a reward to it!  Aren’t we all more apt to do something if there is a reward attached?  Pavlov’s Dog 101!

·           Make a competition for yourself!  Join an accountability group.  Do something that will hold you accountable daily.  This can be as simple as going to the dollar store and getting gold star stickers and putting a sticker on every day that you do some type of fitness!  You will enjoy putting that gold star on that calendar!  Or post your photos on IG.  It will be like a daily goal for you.  I can eat clean because I need to post my meals on Instagram!

·         Don’t stop learning.  Educate yourself as much as you can about behaviors, or things related to your goal.  I have podcasts galore on my iphone and I buy self-help audiobooks and listen to them when I’m driving to and from work.  Most audiobooks come with the book section as well for you to track your notes!

·         Try to surround yourself with people that won’t sabotage your success.  For example, if you’re trying to quit smoking, you won’t stand outside with your normal crowd for 10 minute breaks.  That would be like hanging a mouse in front of a cat!  You want to surround yourself with ‘Like-minded’ individuals.  Join a new club, or a book group!  Or join a walking or running group.  Most running shoe stores actually have running groups that you can join!

·         Manage your surroundings!  Don’t buy unhealthy food.  If it’s in your cabinet, it’s only going to whisper your name.  Eat me, Eiren.  Eat me, Eiren.  It’s like Alice and Wonderland in your cupboards.  I try not to buy anything with sugar.  If I want something, I have to go out and buy it.  And more than likely in that entire process, is the bar of chocolate REALLY that worth it for the gas it’s going to cost for me to go purchase it?  Sometimes yes, but most times no.

·         Set reminders on your phone.  You can even get creative and visual with this one!  For example.  I snack while I make dinner.  Well, most nights I make dinner at the same time.  I can always set up reminders to show myself photos of my “sweaty selfies” or that bikini that I’ve been eyeing to buy.  Those reminders will trigger me to STOP and think about my habit!

·         Invest in your goal.  For example, if you are trying to lose weight.  Give yourself a reward (this goes back to the reward concept) for every day that you ate 100% clean.  This may not be every day because, heck, I eat healthy and I’m not “clean” everyday!  So say for every day you put $5 in a jar.  Well, at the end of the year I bet you’ll have a nice little jar all set up for something to treat yourself to.  Or perhaps enough to go away for the night and celebrate that new little body you’ve been working hard for!

·         Know your triggers.  This is a hard one because you have to put some thought into it.  I’ve heard people say that they mindlessly eat when they watch tv.  Well, instead of eating while watching tv, pick up a new habit.  Learn to knit.  Or brush the dog.  Or get up and jump rope or do some pushups when you get that “food urge”.  Most of us don’t drink enough water through the day, so I turned my mindless eating habit into drinking water.  I’ll get up and go to the kitchen, but instead of filling a bowl, I refill my water bottle.

Always remember that you are more likely to succeed if you plan for your “future” self.  These may seem like a lot of steps and a lot of work to do upfront.  However, if you don’t make time and change, then you’ll never change!  And if you don’t change… you don’t succeed.

What’s the worst that can happen?  At least if you TRY, then you are setting the wheels into motion and YOU ARE ALREADY CHANGING AND GROWING.  You aren’t standing still any longer!!

I hope this rambling , long post made some sense!

Oxo

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What are some changes that you have struggled with before?

What are some tips that have worked for you to create new habits and grow?

What are some of your favorite personal development books that have helped you?

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You have to really BELIEVE to make it happen!

I have amazingly wonderful news!!!

i got the job

You have NO idea how excited, relieved, excited, happy, excited, nervous, excited (can you tell i’m excited!) about getting this job.  It’s a chance to work for a fabulous non profit in Portland.  I will be able to use my skills AND learn way more along the way.  🙂

This has been a LONG road.  I didn’t expect it to take this long.  My first idea of “starting my life” came around in August.  Well really, put into motion in August.  It’s almost the end of the year.  I’ve been out of work since September.  Thank you for savings account!!  The odd thing was that I thought I could just go out and get a waitressing job?!?? Um no.  Not one place called me back after filling out applications.  I guess it’s not that easy to get a part time job!

BUT, after that being said, i also have an amazingly supportive father and living situation.  I DO NOT, by any means, encourage that anyone go out, quit your job and start your life.  Yes, I am going to struggle some with $$ for a while because of this major life change, but I have zero regret.  I have been able to remember what it is like to live and, more importantly, feel again.

After my mom died, i wasn’t, per say, an ice queen.  I was nice on the outside, but I wasn’t happy.  I became immune to my emotions.  Since leaving my last job, I have been able to grieve, smile, enjoy, laugh, cry…  Things I had not done in 2 1/2 years.  If you are in a situation where you know you are 100% not meant to be and unfulfilled, then I do encourage you to re-evaluate your life, and go about making changes in a thoughtful manner.  My experience is that life is WAY too short.  Heck, I am only (almost) 30 years old and I have experienced WAY more than most people in their middle age!  You cannot live your life afraid, or closed off.  I am speaking from experience.  For the last two years, I have been almost like a hermit crab.  I am ready to leave my shell behind and start a new life!  Yes I won’t have my suit of armor to protect me… but that’s okay!

This is going to be an amazing journey so….

Lets get started….

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A wish and a prayer…

Have you ever made a decision 100% on a wish and a prayer?  I start my new life tomorrow.  The UNEMPLOYED one!! I am officially done with my last job.  While I loved what I did and the amazing volunteers I got to work with on a daily basis, I wasn’t happy.  We spend a third of our life at our jobs.  Why should we spend 1/3 of our life being unhappy?  So, I decided to make the change.

I also have decided to not only leave my employment in this economy (currently slamming head against wall for stupidity), but I have also decided to make a life change.  I have lived most of my adult life caring for others, or living somewhere to “be there” for another person.  I moved here right after my mom died to live with my dad.  I would not change a thing.  I think our relationship has only grown and he has become my best friend, a role my mother held for a very long time.  However, we need to grow and I think we have become each others ‘crutch”.  So, I have decided to move.  On my own.  Something I have never done!  I lived with my sister for 5 years on Cape Cod, but we lived in our parents home.  We paid them, but that’s not the same as going off on your own and paying rent, utilities, etc.  Well, I guess I kind of did that on the Cape, but it’s different when it’s your parents! There is a safety net.  No more net.  I’ve been applying to jobs for 6 months, but got no bites.  What Non-profit is going to call a girl for an interview when she lives 4.5 hours away, and has 4 weeks notice to give?  I did A LOT  of soul searching, and that’s when I came to the conclusion it was time to give my notice.

Do you believe in signs?  As SOON as I gave my notice, I got a call about an interview.  I didn’t get the job, but still.  And then there were 3 other opportunities that were met my exact skill set after that.  Things also remarkably fell into place for my dad.  He’s had a really tough 2.5 years since my mom died.  And things seem to be taking a turn for the better for him too.  It was weird, it was like she was playing my cheerleader from heaven.  A role that she used to play when she was here on earth.

So here I am, unemployed, and now I wait!  Waiting to hear back from some bites I have out there.  BUT, I have all the faith that everything happens for a reason, and it will all work itself out! I just have to play my role in life, and it will happen!  Whatever “it” is, I don’t know, but I do trust “it’s” going to be pretty amazing!

I’m just a little bird, with wings spread out far, I just have to learn how to fly with them now!

Have you ever taken a leap of faith and done something completely out of your comfort zone?