I don’t know about you but by the 1st of Jan my liver and kidneys are at a pretty low point and screaming out for some TLC. This gives us an excellent opportunity to reflect on how we might best support them in 2019!
Discomfort and conflict are often the best breeding grounds for significant transformation. Getting to a real low can create the necessary environment and motivation needed to make significant and impactful changes in our lives.
If you’ve been thinking about making some dietary changes this January, it’s important to remember that it doesn’t happen overnight. Preparing yourself for the time and careful attention true transformation needs is essential to ensuring your success when making lifestyle changes.
Here’s my 5 top tips for how to ensure you stick to loving your liver (or any other part of your anatomy or well-being!) this January.
Be realistic and visualise
You will only achieve goals that you want to achieve. Committing to eternal abstinence from alcohol when you like a little drink of a weekend is not realistic and you’ll eventually fall off the wagon in a blaze of flaming sambuca glory.
Think about how you would like your life to be different as a result of the changes you want to make. What will be the benefits to your wellbeing and that of those around you? What would stay the same? Get really clear on why you are doing this so that you can see where you want to be and are revving your engine to get started.
Have a plan for failure
What is likely to steer you off target? Be OK with this happening and have a plan for what you will do to bounce back. Build the mistakes in to the plan – don’t let them throw you off course. They are part of your journey not a blocker to your journey. Making a slow incremental change can allow you to buffer for failure – if you’re drinking 5 nights a week and want to get to 1 night a week, perhaps start with drinking one less drink a night before moving to only drinking four nights. Leave the night that you know you’ll be most tempted as your drinking night. And have a plan for what you’ll do the day after a slip up.
Use all the resource open to you
Tell people you are making a change. Declaring your intent to change is a powerful thing on its own but don’t under estimate the hidden resources in those around you. Ask your friends and family to help you change your routines and habits. See which of them would be happy with a walk in the park and a café for coffee instead of footy and the pub for a burger, for example.
Learn from others who have made changes. Ask them how they did it, what they came up against and what they have learned on their journeys – you don’t have to have all the answers and learning from other’s mistakes can be a great way to hack the process.
Celebrate EVERY success
Ensure there are milestones in your plan and make sure you celebrate them. Most of us find it very natural to flog ourselves when we fall off the wagon but don’t recognise our own achievements. Be clear on how you will measure your success and ensure this is based on your measurement, not from comparison with others or from what others tell you is success.
When you do make changes, no matter how small, think about what you would say to a friend that had achieved what you have. A pat on the back and a bit of self-love and compassion goes a long way to helping you make lasting habitual change.
Only you can make this change. Change only comes from first, identifying that a change needs to happen. And I strongly suspect that because you are reading this, you have smashed that one. Well done you!
Secondly, we must take responsibility and own the work that needs to be done to get there. No one else will do this for you. Commit to timelines of when you will start, finish and achieve each milestone to help you keep momentum.
And finally, ask yourself, how committed am I to this on a scale of 1-10? If you are 7 or under, I would strongly suggest you go back to the start and have a really good think about what is driving you to do this and what it is you really want out of it.
Congratulations on having taken the first step by reading this article. Schedule some time for yourself this week, maybe half an hour curled up somewhere warm, to really think about each of these areas and get a robust plan ready for when you want to start.
You’ll thank yourself later, as will your liver.
Thanks to Tracy James for this article. Tracy is a Life and Team & Leadership Coach from Berkshire. She helps people deal with their stuff and get what they want personally and in their career or business, while running team and leadership development programmes in SMEs. Tracy believes that we all have what I takes to achieve the change we are looking for in our life or business and loves helping people unlock that potential. She does this with her signature brave, quirky and bubbly fun style in 121 sessions, group workshops and trainings and team formats.
For a free 30-minute session, contact Tracy at:
+44 7738 686694.