Imagine your life is perfect in every respect; what would it look like?- Brian Tracy
Research has reinforced what we already know- that images have the amazing capacity to help us learn and help us remember.... hence the expression, 'A picture is worth a thousand words.'
You only have to look at the family photos in your albums. As you look at each old and loved snapshot, I'm sure you'll remember both the occasion it was taken and where. The photo might even trigger memories of certain smells and sounds associated with that time and place.
Yes.. images can be very powerful. But, how does this help you and your motivation for an ongoing habit or the attainment of a particular goal?
Pictures speak a thousand words and while this is so true you can also use it to your advantage when it comes to motivation.
If you have a goal such as weight loss, do you ever look in the mirror and feel disappointed by what you see? This often gives you enough motivation to start a new diet but it may not be enough to keep you on track for months at a time.
This is where using a picture or vision board becomes extremely handy. By having a visual story board you can track your progress by looking backwards.
When it comes to motivation you tend to always be focused on the end goal. While this is good it can also be a factor for losing your motivation. If your goal was to lose 100 pounds and you have only lost 30 you may feel as though things aren’t working any more. You start to feel like giving up.
Focus on your accomplishments and successes
When this happens you want to look backwards instead of forward. This way you can now focus on your accomplishments and successes. This is the perfect strategy for long term goals that could require a year or more of motivation and focus.
As your body changes you can’t always remember what you looked like 2 or 3 months ago. If you have images then you do have a reminder of this. This is why creating your own story board of your motivational journey is so important.
You can create your own visual story board in many different ways.
1. Create a physical picture board
You can actually have a physical story board in your home where you can add photos each week or month. But if you're not a hands-on crafty person, ditch the scissors and glue and check out these other options.
2. Ditch the scissors and glue and create a digital vision board
Samantha Bell (Brand It Girl) says, 'A vision board is a tool that you can use to help clarify, concentrate and maintain focus on specific life goals.' She goes on to describe and show you how to create a digital vision board that can then be used for your computer wallpaper or printed framed and displayed on the wall.
PicMonkey is another option for creating a digital vision board. PicMonkey provides step by step instructions and inspiration... worth checking out. Remember, that there are no rules or formulas for creating your vision board. It's all about personal goals and personal style.
3. Create your picture board online
Uploading your photos, quotes and content to an online picture board is another way create your vision board. One of the best places to do this is on Pinterest. You can create a weight loss, exercise board or any board dedicated to your new goal. You can choose whether you'd like to keep your board 'secret', or 'public' if you'd like the incentive that others' encouragement would add.
Here's a quick overview of creating a Pinterest board
Add pictures on a regular basis to build motivation.
When you begin your vision board and particularly if you create a Pinterest vision board, you can add your starting photos and then add photos on a regular basis. Once you start doing this you will no doubt enjoy adding photos each week. Plus you can share them with your friends and family as well.
Include pictures of your healthy choice meals or meal plans that have worked for you. If your goal is a daily walking habit, take photos of your favourite walking track. If your goal is daily writing, include images of where you like to write and your journal or tablet. Add inspirational quotes.
As soon as you feel as though you are losing your motivation you can easily refer back to your board and take a good look at how far you have come. Even upload photos about how you are feeling at that moment so if it happens again you can see how you dealt with it.
Try it and see if it doesn’t help you stay on track.
And... I have no doubt that you'll also enjoy creating your ongoing vision board.
Exercise and fun. Two words that, for most people, will never go hand in hand.
The fact of the matter is that, as adults, the majority of us do not get our 150 minutes of cardio and two days of strength training every week. This sounds like an impossible task. We are just too busy now, the household chores take priority, the kids need their meals, and by the time everything is done, we are absolutely exhausted and need to get our rest in before it all begins again tomorrow!
And to top it off, we don’t eat as well as we did 30 or 40 years ago. The pull of ready meals and takeaways beats the effort of making a meal from scratch. We just cannot cope with the amount of pressure being put upon us every day.
What is the solution? Making exercise fun! And here’s how you do it…
Play That Funky Music…
Doing any type of exercise, whether you are finally getting to the gym, or dancing at home, is fully enhanced by the addition of music. For the parents that are unable to get out of the house, put a song on that really gets the kids up and moving, and join in with them! Scientifically, they say that the type of music that you enjoy will really affect your workout for the better. So, if you like heavy metal, the speed of that type of music will get your heart pumping faster than Mozart’s Requiem! Disco music, with its steady beats and upbeat rhythms, is far likelier to induce positive exercise than feeling like you can’t go on. Dancing is one of the best forms of cardio, and you only have to look at the ballroom dancers on TV to see how fit they are!
Let’s Go Outside…
There are many benefits to going walking with the family. Not only does walking along different gradients of land help to burn calories more efficiently, but the experience of being outdoors is a more positive one than running idly on the treadmill for 40 minutes and has been proven to release tension and stress. And by doing it before your evening meal, you are working up an appetite as well as improving your digestion.
If being at one with nature isn’t your speed, there are many activities that you can participate in as a family. By scheduling family time, you are not only getting in the desired exercise, but you are bonding over the experience. That doesn’t mean to say that you need to play an overly competitive sport.
There are many other fun activities that you can take part in, such as swimming or, for the uninitiated, Bubble Football -Holleyweb provide zorb-like football suits you can wear and get playing. If the exercise is fun, it won’t even feel like exercise!
There are so many things you can do to inject fun into your exercise routines, and if you enjoy it, you will always want to come back to it.
Life as a grandma.. it's no 'quiet, restful days in the rocking-chair'. It's filled with activity, excitement and lots of family fun. Please share it with me.