Appreciate the life you are living and achieve more through EnerG coach, Ellen Goldman. Your questions on balance, motivation and your lifestyle are answered through these simple tips and solutions. Get more out of your life with the help of Identity.
Ellen Goldman EnerG Coaching
Question: It’s the holiday season and I do not know how to manage my eating habits. I cook the junk for the holidays and I eat it, too. How do I say no? I know mental strength is weak during the holidays. Any suggestions?
Answer: First and foremost, begin to change your inner talk. Telling yourself, “I do not know how to manage my eating habits. I know mental strength is weak during the holidays,” already sets you up for failure. You expect to have trouble, therefore you do. If you do a good job of managing your eating habits at other times of the year, there’s no reason why you can’t use that strength during the holiday season. Remind yourself, “I do a great job of managing my foods the rest of the year, so despite the increase in treats accessible during this season, I have the determination to continue eating healthy.” By empowering your thoughts, you’ll empower your actions.
Secondly, follow the same smart guidelines you do everyday. Don’t skip meals. Eat often and eat light. Choose a combination of healthy grains, veggies, fruits and lean protein. Keep up your exercise routine, even if you need to cut back on the duration of your sessions if pressed for time. Don’t show up at parties hungry. As far as cooking “junk” for the holidays, why not try lightening up some of your traditional recipes, or try out some new healthier ones. I am sure your guests will appreciate new choices at the buffet table. If you do cook or bake some indulgent treats, either do so in advance if they can be frozen, or prepare them right before your events so you won’t be staring at the goodies for days on end. Begin to visualize how great you will feel when the season is over when you are still feeling healthy and on track with your wellness goals. The more you imagine and picture yourself doing great at this time of year, the more that reality will come true. Happy holidays!
Question: I am currently single again after a few years, now I do not know what to do with my time. I feel like I have so much free time.
Answer: Transitioning from being a couple to being a single can often be quite difficult. Even if you are OK with the breakup, you may be feeling lost as to who you are without a partner by your side. However, despite the fact that change is often scary and hard, it also offers opportunities that can be exciting and growth producing. Begin to ask yourself some questions, such as, “What did I like to do as a child that I’ve forgotten about now that grown up responsibilities have come into my life?” Did you draw, do jigsaw puzzles, or ice skate? “What activities do I look forward to when on vacation, that I never seem to do at home?” Try visiting a museum. Pretend you are a tourist and visits the sights in your town, or take a walking tour. “What have I always said I would like to do if I had the time?” Want to learn to play piano or paint? Write the novel you’ve had in your mind for years? Did you ever dream about cooking vegetarian recipes or baking bread? How about taking a class in one of these activities. You will learn a new skill and possibly make some new friends.
One more idea; nothing feels better than volunteering and giving of yourself to others. You can visit nursing homes and brighten the lives of many lonely individuals. Perhaps becoming a Big Sister to a child who doesn’t have a mom would feel rewarding and certainly fill some of your lonely hours. If you love animals, the shelters are always looking for help. Use your imagination, bravely try out some new things, and soon you’ll be doing things that make you happy, without worrying about anyone else. You may even find that alone time is not so bad after all. Then when you least expect it, someone new will enter your world.
Question: What are some tips to improve my mental fitness that will help me get through the physical fitness?
Answer: When you refer to “mental fitness” what you are really asking about is how to increase motivation. Motivation is the energy, the jet fuel that drives us, to do things we may not want to in the moment because we value the outcome. Examine your reasons for participating in a fitness routine, until you find why you want to exercise, versus all the reasons why you should exercise. In order for motivation to be sustained, you have to feel not only that you are doing this because it is something you want (intrinsically motivated) but also that we are competent at what it is we are doing. So, if you have reasons to exercise that are meaningful to you, not because your mother, boyfriend or doctor thinks you should, there is a better chance that you’ll stick to a fitness program. And, if you find an activity that you are comfortable with and feel that you do well, that will help too. If you feel awkward and uncomfortable in a spinning class, but love the feel of being on a bike outside, obviously you’ll be more motivated to take to the road. So the formula for improving your mental fitness to get through your physical fitness is tune into what’s driving you (your big reason why) and find things that you are good at, and you enjoy doing. Experiment with lots of possibilities until you find the mode of exercise that you can look forward to and compels you to get through your workouts.
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