Procrastination, rumination, repetition! What? Aristotle called procrastination, akrasia, the state of delaying – of acting against our better judgement. You know, ‘I’ll start healthy eating Monday’, except oops, at 2 pm on Monday I’m eating a choc-chip muffin. ‘Oh well, I’ll try again next Monday.’ (What’s it with Mondays?)
In our humanness, we’re pretty good starters – less good at keeping going when we don’t want to, and often poor at finishing and reaching our goal. Also, we tend to value immediate rewards more highly than future rewards: we like to indulge ourselves; we turn excuses into reasons; we ‘ruminate’. Rumination is a form of thinking that often focuses on the negative. Around 80 per cent of our thoughts are negative and on a repeating loop. Put all that together and it’s easy to see why one bad day becomes two!
Life is complex and challenging, and to top that off we live in a pandemic – isolated, restricted and managed! Sometimes we’re making bad choices knowing there will be consequences but doing it anyway. Sometimes we’re not choosing anything, with the pandemic as an excuse for our apathy. Sometimes we’re stuck waiting: for things to get better, the pandemic to be over, for normal life to return.
Today’s quote is not about saying we need to be relentlessly positive and proactive, but rather that every single day we get another opportunity to do better – to change what isn’t working, to learn something new, and to move forward. We create our own life and success, but it’s a lot about mindset, resilience and perseverance rather than external circumstances. It’s about our ability to create momentum and to keep going until we finish what we started.
Here’s a strategy we share with coaching clients. Choose three ‘non-negotiables’ that will serve you each day. Regardless of what’s happening in your world, do these things. Here’s a simple example:
Non-negotiable 1: I’ll walk a minimum of 5 km a day at least six days a week. No excuses. It doesn’t matter if it’s hot, cold or raining; whether I feel like doing it; or how busy I am; that 5 km will be walked today!
What three non-negotiables can you put in place to serve your better tomorrow?
– The Coach Place Global
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