Imagining the Day Before You Live It!

July 26, 2013 in Uncategorized

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-image-imagination-image17766376

 

Something I used to do a lot

That helped me immensely

Was imagining the day before I lived it

I might be sitting there unmotivated

Depressed

Worried about my ability to follow through with my goals

And feeling generally defeated

When I’d do this exercise

I’d just ask myself this question

 

“What would your day look like if you lived it the way you wanted?”

 

I’d give myself permission to say “I’m not able to do these things”

This is just me fantasizing the way someone does

When they wonder what they would do if they won the lottery

I’d say…

“Ok let’s just imagine for a second what your day WOULD look like at the end if you did the things you wanted to do”

 

I did this today actually

And this was my answer

 

“I would have drank protein shakes every 3 hours and eaten a low carb dinner”

“I would have worked out”

That was my answer

So then I ask myself a second question

 

“How would you FEEL if your day went this way”

“If at the end of the day you looked back having accomplished these goals—what would you feel like?”

 

 

And the answer is:

ECSTATIC

That’s truly how I would feel

I try to sit with that feeling for awhile

Entertaining the possibility of what it would feel like to get through the whole day

Having accomplished that

Knowing I DID IT

And I experience that feeling for a time

I just imagine it, feel it, and let it soak in

It’s so much better than the feeling of dread

Defeat

Disappointment

And then I begin to think to myself

That this is much different from imagining what I’d do if I won the lottery

Because while my odds on that are not very good

THIS is a game I can win

THIS is a gamble I have much better odds with

And maybe….just maybe…I could get to that accomplished feeling at the end of the day

And wouldn’t it be AMAZING?!!

But getting from point A to point B is not always easy

How do I make it happen when I feel unmotivated?

And that’s when I ask the 3rd question

 

“What would be the first step you’d have to take to make this happen?”

 

And again….I give myself permission to NOT actually do any of it

This is just self-talk

THAT’S ALL

NO PRESSURE

But I imagine for a moment

What would I have to do to get myself to work out?

And the answer is

 

“First I’d have to get out of bed and put on my workout clothes”

So I ask myself

“Could I do this first step?”

Because working out doesn’t start when you hit the treadmill

It starts with you getting up

That’s step one

Finding your workout clothes

That’s step two

And that’s when I ask myself the fourth question

 

“Could you do step one? Maybe even step two?”

 

And that’s not so overwhelming

If I give myself permission to just do the first two steps

So I do

I get up

I walk to the closet

I grab my workout clothes

I put them on

And now I walk to the living room and put on my tennis shoes

I give myself credit for that

Because after all….this is just a game I’m playing

But something usually happens once I’m dressed

I begin to think

Maybe….just maybe…..I could do one more step

Because after all I’m tapping into the feeling of what it would be like

To end my day in victory

So I decide to ask myself about the next step

“Could I start walking to the mailbox?”

And I know that YES….I can do that!

So I do

And maybe the next one after that?

When I’m really stuck in a rut, it is hard

There are days all I can get to is the tennis shoes and nothing else

But I still got out of bed, right?

And that’s progress

But most of the time by the time I get to the mailbox

I’m ready to do more

And then I’m out walking and I’m no longer just IMAGINING

I’m making it happen

And the excitement kicks in at making my dream day a reality

I do the same thing with my food

I want Doritos

But I ask myself

 

“Could you drink your protein shake FIRST?”

 

I mean even if I eat the junk that follows

At least I was willing to drink the protein shake first, RIGHT?

This is how my mind works

It gets overwhelmed when I try to take on big goals all at once

Especially when I’m off track, unmotivated or in a funk!

So I break it down to do-able steps

Being very careful to give myself credit every bit of the way

Because even just being willing to do this visualization exercise

Is more than I used to do at 417 pounds

We have to positively reinforce any behavior we are willing to do

That moves us in the right direction

I’ve found that once I drink the protein shake

I’m usually pretty full and no longer wanting the junk food

It doesn’t always happen this way

But most of the time it does

Because once again I tap into that feeling of victory

Of recognizing that I was willing to TRY

To take a step in the right direction

And I begin to be fueled by the hope that my day could go well

I used to do this all the time

In the beginning

And I’m going to go back and start doing it again

Because it helps to get me moving

And once I string together enough good days in a row

The routines and habits begin building back up

And the interesting thing about that

Is routines and habits become automatic after awhile

Like driving your car

You don’t have to tell yourself how to put the key in the ignition

You just do it

That’s what happens the more you take action

Whatever action that is

Whether it’s reaching for the cupcakes

Or your tennis shoes

Sometimes we just have to be willing to take baby steps

Because baby steps lead to big  things

One step at a time

We’ll get there!

So imagine your life

Before you live it

And by the end of the day

You may have just lived the life of your dreams!

alicequote

 

lifelive

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Marc July 26, 2013 at 12:57 pm

Baby steps work. Good post!
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Elaine July 26, 2013 at 2:08 pm

Again, I say Thank You!

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Heather C. July 26, 2013 at 2:20 pm

It even helps to start the night before by putting out the clothes you want to work out in, getting your food and water ready, telling yourself you’re getting up to work out, etc. I find that if i don’t do this key step, I am in a panic in the morning. I have enough anxiety- I don’t need to add to it by being unprepared and/or setting up myself for failure. Nice post of using the mind in a positive way.

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LHA July 27, 2013 at 12:29 am

Oh, what a wonderful post! This is just genius….imagining and taking one small step at a time. So often I am ready to give up because of feeling overwhelmed with the huge task ahead of me. Your description is totally motivational to me and I intend to put it into effect tonight as I daydream what my day can be tomorrow. I will be interested to see how far I get, but as you have pointed out even getting part of the day you imagine accomplished is better than just sitting here overwhelmed and making no progress at all.

By the way, the pillow picture at the end of your post contains the last part of one of my favorite quotes. I have a framed copy of it in a prominent place in my house: “Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you’ve imagined.” Henry David Thoreau wrote this over 100 years ago and it is just the most awesome statement and directive I can imagine. May we all do something toward that today!!

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Taryl July 27, 2013 at 12:32 am

I’m right there with you. Visualizing success and just taking steps to do it helps so much when I’m struggling. One foot in front of the other, one choice at a time. No pressure, just rinse/repeat. And then before I know it, I’m not struggling so badly anymore. It just takes consistency and a refusal to ever give up.
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Shay July 27, 2013 at 3:05 am

I found myself doing a variation of this thinking a few months ago, and I loved that I realized what made me happy. Yes, it is hard to get out of bed at 5AM to put in a killer workout because that’s the only time I have to do it, but it is SO worth how I feel the rest of the day–strong and fit! I think about how great I’ll feel the rest of the day having it done, and that’s what motivates me to pop that killer DVD in first thing in the morning. One hour of pain is so worth 23 hours of feeling awesome!!
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Losing The Rolls July 27, 2013 at 5:43 am

Wow, I like this idea. Changing or eliminating my bad habits and making better ones may require me to do it in small baby steps. I think if try the imagining my day the night before, it may give me a plan or an idea of a plan of what to do the next day. This would help with avoiding temptations and hopefully get me moving. Great tip Holly.
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Amanda July 28, 2013 at 12:30 am

Genius! I love this post, thanks Holly! 🙂

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allison July 28, 2013 at 12:37 am

Holly;
What a great role model you are! So inspiring, thank you for sharing your story with us. I added a post about you on my blog… you inspire me. I will be an avid follower
Thank you!
Allison @ gotsleeved.wordpress.com

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Dana July 30, 2013 at 4:02 pm

WOW…..

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