If you've been a patient at the clinic, you know that regardless of what type of issue we're helping people with, we ALWAYS make sure we're helping people with their mindset around stress and self-care.
Whether a patient comes in with thyroid issues, menopausal symptoms, depression, anxiety, fatigue, PCOS, or (what we're most famous for) infertility...
The way out of their situation always requires CHANGE.
And, that's not just a change in what they're eating, or the supplements they're taking or not taking. They are also being called up to change how they're thinking about and responding to the stresses and challenges of life.
It's December 2022 as I write this, and what I like to do every year at this time of year is:
- Reflect on the past year: Did I make progress on the intentions I set for the year? Will I complete some (or maybe even all) of my projects I set out to do?
- Start thinking about the year ahead: What will be my themes for 2023? What do I want to improve, change, grow, or even shrink (yes, sometimes downsizing is important too!)?
You may not think this has anything at all to do with "wellness", but I assure you, it is actually the FOUNDATION of it.
Nothing leads to burnout, disappointment, frustration, and just overall lack of happiness than not having a clear goal or direction.
Conversely, when we can wake up every day knowing we've got something meaningful to work on, we have a much greater chance of being happy and strong on a day-in, day-out basis.
So, if you haven't done what I'm about to teach you, I want to challenge you to give it a try and prove for yourself (or prove me wrong!) that it is not only helpful, but CRUCIAL to living a purposeful life rooted in being happy AND healthy.
In fact, what I'll tell you is this:
A focused, clear, and calm mind that has a goal will ALWAYS lead to a more balanced, more responsive, more resilient hormonal system and state.
Not only that, but your immune system, the metabolism, and the nervous system will thank you too. 🙂
So, let's get started. All you have to do is follow these FIVE simple steps. Ready?
Let's do it.
Step ONE: Take a moment to think about ONE thing you'd like to finish / accomplish before the end of this year.
It might be something as mundane as "re-organize the pantry" or "clean out the garage". Or, it could be something a little more esoteric like "establish a daily yoga practice" or "read that book I've been wanting to read".
Whatever it is, make note of it by writing it down or putting it in a google doc or something. Just so it's documented.
Step TWO: Specify WHY that thing is important for you.
This is so so important. The science around motivation clearly shows that having a clear sense of WHY we're doing something dramatically increases the chances that we'll stick to it and finish it.
And... while we often think we just "know" why we have decided to work on a certain thing, in reality we often haven't given it much thought at all. Hence, the chances of finishing are minimal.
Example: Jane knew she was overweight and always wanted to lose 30 lbs. She kept trying a bunch of different diets, making some progress, but then slipping back into her old habits. Then, at a recent physical Jane found out she is pre-diabetic. Her grandmother had full-blown diabetes and she saw firsthand how challenging and difficult that was for her.
NOW Jane has a clear why: "I want to avoid becoming diabetic and going thru what grandma went thru."
Obviously for some of the examples above, like cleaning out the garage, we're not going to have such a life-altering "why". Still, we need one if we want to be almost certain to do it.
Maybe cleaning out the garage will mean you can finally park your car in there. Or, maybe it's going to feel good to get rid of all that junk you're tired of looking at. Or, maybe you have a bunch of things in the garage that are useful you can donate to a cause you believe in.
Whatever your why, state it clearly and note it next to the goal.
Step THREE: Itemize It
Simply put, this is where we list out all the little things we need to do to complete the thing we want to complete.
For example, "Establish a daily yoga practice" might be itemized like this:
- Block off the time.
- Order the yoga mat off Amazon.
- Find that yoga video I liked again on YouTube.
- Let fam know I'll be doing yoga during that time so they don't interrupt me.
Simple, right? Trust me, you'll be able to think of these steps, whatever your goal is.
Step FOUR: Schedule It
"Duh!" is probably what you're thinking, but this is the step that is probably most overlooked or incorrectly done.
When I say "schedule" it, I mean literally put it on your calendar and block off the time so you can SEE it there.
For the yoga practice goal above, the schedule could be something like:
- December 1st at 2pm (today): Figure out the times I can do yoga every day and block them off on my calendar.
- December 2nd at 10am (tomorrow): Go on amazon and order the yoga mat.
- December 3rd at 10am - 11am (Saturday): Spend some time looking for the yoga video (assuming we'll find it lol)
- December 4th at dinner (Sunday): Let fam know about my yoga time and my desire for no interruptions.
Two things to point out here:
- "Schedule it" means give it a real slot on an actual day. That's why I included actual dates and times above.
- Scheduling like this forces you to think about how much time it will take, so you don't overcommit.
- You'll sometimes finish stuff really fast. That's OK, you can always go ahead and do the next thing real quick. Feels good to be "ahead of schedule".
This is kind of basic in a way, but the point is to start off learning how to do it with some easy stuff.
Step FIVE: Knock It Out
The easiest step actually... Just follow your schedule and get it done.
This is where we run into the little "D" word, "Discipline". One reason I'd prefer you start small is to help you get some easy wins. You'll feel really good checking those things off your list, and it will encourage you to keep doing this process.
Naturally, over time, you'll start to apply it to bigger, more ambitious goals which might be stuff like that big trip you're dying to take or learning a new language or starting up a new income-generating side-hustle or really whatever is important to you (remember the "why"?).
My PROMISE To You
Here's what I can promise you. Follow these steps, get that thing done, and
- You will feel a sense of accomplishment and release.
- You'll want more of that.
- The more of that you get, the less stressed, overwhelmed, and tired you'll be.
- When you're less stressed, overwhelmed, and tired it's because:
- Your adrenal glands are stronger.
- Your nervous system is more resilient.
- Your metabolism is more balanced.
- Your overall health is much, much better.
And THAT is how all this ties in with our work at The Axelrad Clinic.
Because, our mission isn't "fixing people". It's helping people gain strength and reclaim the power to heal themselves and live happy, purposeful lives.