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How to make Pilates a habit.
When we think about starting a new exercise routine we sometimes make goals that will hopefully motivate us to succeed.
Invairable we start well but fail quickly.
During this weeks Pilates for Busy People Weekly show I talk to Jacqui about how to create a habit starting with 3 main points to think about before you even start exercising!
I am a business mindset coach. A lot of my work is around helping business owners to figure out what it is that’s going on in their heads. That translates into so we tend to behave in line with our beliefs, so that kind of what goes on in their heads translates to better results.
So when people want to change the results that they’re getting, it’s kind of unpacking and doing that work to help people figure out what they need to change in terms of their thought patterns, and in order to change their behaviours, and then get the different results that they need. There is a lot of crossover making it perfect for people and exercise and how they feel about it and what they want to achieve.
We hear about creating a habit that it takes 90 days or 30 days, whatever to create a habit but what is you take on this?
I think in terms of the timeframe and the research on timeframes there’s loads of myths around that. The research would say, there is no one definitive answer. It will be different for different people in different circumstances. I guess that’s kind of the first myth.
There are lots of ways of creating a habit we have picked out 3 that we think will be useful.
Jacqui says “There are so many things that you can do to help yourself with creating good habits. I am honing in on some of the ones that I guess for me, they feel important because think they’re talked about less often
Firstly, to really get clear on your why you want to create a habit.
If you’re thinking about exercise, and specifically about regular Pilates practice, There is probably a reason that that has become your choice of exercise. It might be about strength, it might be about flexibility it might be to support you with other you know, fitness or injury prevention”.
Jacqui goes on to say “There are loads of different reasons. I think it’s really key that before you start to create a new habit, you really dig into, what is that going to do for me? What’s the purpose behind me creating this habit? Because it’s very easy to say, Oh, it’s only 10 minutes a day”
So, you just need to get on and do it?
“Motivation doesn’t tend to work like that. And you won’t kind of spring out of bed and feel ready and motivated to do it every single day. So when you are really clear about what it will do for you what the purpose is of building this habit, then you can start to visualize how that will look. And that difference at the end.”
Do you think this is a because that we talked about goal setting and exercise?
Jacqui explains “It’s a similar sort of thing, but I always know that this is an area that people don’t delve into enough. They don’t know if they’ve achieved it.
I kind of think if you don’t know why you’re doing it, why are you doing it?
When I talk to clients about goal setting, and we talk about flipping it on its head. The way that people often approach goal setting is they think about the result first. They think about I’m going to do 10 minutes a day? They don’t necessarily then do the work that on the what they’re trying to achieve, or the why it matters.
If you do that work first, then you’re what you’re going to do has a purpose to it.
Then a specific goal that you will be able to measure your progress against – won’t just practicing for 10 minutes every day.
She then goes on to say “If somebody wants to do it because of injury prevention, so they’ve had injuries previously, and they want to do it for that reason. If they’re not clear on right, okay, well, that’s my real reason for doing it. Then they start to practice and then they get out of the habit. And it just, you know, they have three, four days if they haven’t done it, and then it gets harder to get back to and there’s not a reason to fit it back into their life to get back on the wagon. So, so the questions you’d ask first of all other Why?
So those are the ones you ask yourself first before you even start thinking about your 10 minutes, because it will shape why you want to do it and what you’re aiming to achieve.
For example, the choice of what practice you do will be specific practices that you will do more regularly, depending upon what you’re aiming to achieve as a goal. Instead of just being – I’ll go on and I’ll just click on the first video or I’ll go into the beginners section, or the intermediate section, people will then be able to choose things that are moving them towards what they want to achieve.”
The second habit idea
Is to understand your own personal motive and triggers
Jacqui explains that people can be motivated towards something that they want to get to, or away from something that they want to get away from. So it’s the pleasure praying principle. And you might want to get towards a good situation, or you might want to get away from a bad situation.
For most the obvious thing is, to be motivated about getting towards something that wants to achieve other being stronger, more flexible,
But other people, it may be more about what they want to get away from. So that might be, you know, I feel really old when I stand up from the chair and I’ve been sitting for a while. And I’m fed up of feeling this way.
That might be that they don’t have necessarily a huge goal in terms of that I want to be able to do this or achieve this. Their goal may be phrased more in the way of talking about what they don’t want to experience.
Jacqui a bit of a word geek explains the definition of motivation:-
The word motivation tells a different story. Motive if you think about motive for the crime, it’s the reason that somebody committed the crime. And the suffix ation is an action suffix. So literally, your origin of the word motivation is a reason to take action. That might be positive, but equally, it might be the avoidance of something negative. As an individual which of those applies to you when it comes to your abilities practice will make it easier to have that habit.
So, if you set a goal towards your motivation it will make it worthwhile doing this particular 10 minute practice
What helps us then keep a good habit?
The third thing I would say is look at what makes it easy for you to do your practice.
Jacqui describes something that works for her “My example is when I’m working, I know that if I don’t have a glass of water on my desk, I will drink. But I don’t set myself a goal or you know, try to create a habit of drinking X amount of water. The easiest thing is to always have a glass of water on my desk. I fill it in the morning, and I drink it. Then when it gets to the bottom, I refill it. So, there’s always water there. And naturally, I drink more water.”
“It’s, and I guess probably the advice or give is think back to when you have created a similar habit. So that might be a different exercise habit, or it might have been a time when you were practicing regularly. What was it in that situation that worked well for you then, and use that to figure out what will make it easier for you to then create and sustain that habit now?
These are just three simple points there, that we’ve just gone through.
Obvious but ones we don’t think about enough! There are lots of other reasons to help create a habit.
If you try and create lots of different changes in your life at one time, and then you’re trying to create lots of different habits, and it will take a lot longer So, if focus just on one and let it embedd, then it is likely to be sooner rather than later.
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