As adults, we are ultimately responsible for the decisions we make, the foods we eat, the activities in which we engage and our continued personal growth. So, how does one self-motivate?
First, take time to reflect. Are you taking care of yourself physically? Socially? Emotionally? If not, why not? Was it one defining moment such as an injury or a divorce, or was it a slow progression not easily explained?
Once you have that somewhat sorted, the question then becomes why haven’t you returned to a more healthy lifestyle? Too little time? Too little money? Lack of a supportive friend or partner? Too many excuses?
Now, pick one thing to focus on. That’s right, just one. You don’t need to join an exercise class and a book club and take up gardening to improve your well-being. In fact, you’re likely to be worn out by the end of the first week if you make too many changes at once! Instead, let’s say you choose to join an exercise class. By doing so, you not only improve your physical well-being, but also become part of a social group, both of which can improve your emotional health. What if you decide to take a class you’ve always wanted to take? You will fuel your cognitive and creative abilities, increase your social interactions and, at least to some degree, increase your level of activity. Volunteering will boost your physical activity, cognitive stimulation and social and emotional connections as well. Just pick one thing to change and enjoy the ripple effect that one change makes.
What if you have physical, cognitive or financial limitations? Can you still continue to grow? Of course! There are challenges you may face that others do not, but there ways to overcome those challenges. We’ll discuss them next week.