Guest Post: Spring Cleaning on the Inside

By Emily on 03/24/2009
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Picture 2Today’s post comes courtesy of one of our favorite new blogs, The Tippy Toe Diet.The author, Cammy, learned that becoming healthy and losing weight comes with slow, gradual lifestyle changes. Here, she talks about the importance of checking in with yourself to reassess your life and your priorities.

Yesterday I continued with early spring cleaning by moving all the hard-to-get-to canned goods from my pantry to a bookshelf I put in the laundry room (more about that later in the week). As I was working, I was thinking ahead to more spring cleaning projects in the days ahead, and it occurred to me that my house isn’t necessarily the only aspect of my life that could use a good scrubbing. What better time than spring to where I am in my life and sweep out any cobwebs or dust balls that might be cluttering things up. In the event you might benefit from the same, read on:

Spring Cleaning on the Inside
Think about your life (health, fitness, relationships, career, finance, etc.). Where are you now? Where do you want to be? Why aren’t you there? Don’t beat yourself up over it; just ponder the matter and see if any of these nasties have crept into your life:

Excuses: We’re probably all guilty of making excuses for ourselves when we’re trying to justify something we should or shouldn’t have done. Surely, it’s not just me. (Antidote: When you catch yourself making an excuse for something, ask, “Is this really true, or am I just making myself feel better?”)

Rationalizations: Did you know that another way to spell “rationalize” is “rational lies”? These are the thoughts and words we use to give ourselves permission to do something we know is wrong. (Antidote: Unrelenting honesty with yourself. YOU know the truth about your efforts.)

Unfair Limitations: Many, perhaps even most, of the limitations we face are self-imposed. Why we would do this to ourselves, I don’t know, but we do. (Antidote: Ask yourself, “If I didn’t have xxx in my way, what would be by next step? Then figure out how you can do it–or some form of it–anyway.)

Regrets and Resentments: Writer Malachy McCourt once said, “Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.” Holding on to past haunts and hurts prevents us from moving forward. (Antidote: Forgive yourself and any others involved, and focus on the future. At minimum, let it go.)

Procrastination: “Someday” thinking is fun for thinking about the lottery. For managing our lives, it doesn’t work so well. (Antidote: See Makeover Monday: Getting It Done.)

RightThisMinute Thinking: We all want to see results fast. Whether it’s successful weight loss, financial security, starting a family, or any host of other desires, many of us have a tendency to want to get it done rightthisveryminute. We should be applauded for our energy, but doing things too quickly can cause us to do them in a way that’s unhealthy, inefficient, or ineffective. (Antidote: Patience. Focus on progress, not the goal line. Unless, you’re looking at the goal line, of course, and then it’s eyes on the prize time!)

These evil little habits have a way of creeping into our lives and derailing our progress. Join me this spring in spending a little time with a mental broom and dustpan, eliminating this clutter from our lives. Note that I didn’t say we’d eliminate it for good. Old habits die hard, as the saying goes, and I’m sure we’ll all face these pesky demons again at some time in the future. We’re savvy enough to know that and strong enough to defeat them.

Photo by takomabibelot via flickr.

One Response (Add Yours)

  • CwComment says:

    When I’m having a down day eventually I realize I’ve overlooked a lot my recent accomplishments and things I have to look forward to. Thinking about life in little pieces, using the power of small really helps. Taking a few minutes at the end of the day to record 5 positive things from that day provides a wonderful way to look back when you feel like losing hope.

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