Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Running on auto pilot? Look at your habits.

This morning I woke up, the birds were singing, my house was still asleep.  Well, except for Penny kitty who was trying to convince me she needed a snack before breakfast. She lives for food- funny girl.
I grabbed my running shoes, camera and out I went.  I do this sometimes but not as much as my mind, body and spirit would like.  Why is that?  Why do we spend time on things that don't give us energy instead of things that do?  What do we fill our days with and why?

According to Tom Corley in his book Change your habits, change your life"An average of 40 percent of all daily human activities are habits... Habits include both physical and mental behaviors.  These daily habits unconsciously control our lives... the blueprint of our life and the lives of our children are determined by daily habits.  That's how important habits are.  If you want to change your life you must change your daily habits."

40% of our days are on auto pilot! No wonder!  Our habits could be anything: What we eat,  how we handle stress, if we exercise, how we clean our houses, and even how and if you play...  the list is long and rich.
Do you/we even know what our habits are?  It is unlikely, most of our habits are unconscious actions- habitual actions.  Tom goes on to say most of our habits are formed when we are kids.  Our habit are our normal- our family normal.

Habits are what makes us drive the same route everyday- they save our brain work and conserve our brain's fuel for more important things.  Fortunately and unfortunately once an action is a habit we have to deliberately, consciously and persistently take another action in order to shift a habit.  

This is why goals are so important.  They give our brains a place to set our sites on and then create intentional actions to create a path to get there.  If we are persistent, consistent and wise in our goal actions these actions will become habits that will keep us on our desired paths.

What does that have to do with me getting out of bed and putting my shoes on? What does it have to do with time clutter? This morning I walked and I pondered my own habits and wondered do they serve or deplete? By going off road this morning, I took a step towards shifting a habit.  A new way of moving, it felt good.

There are times in our lives when being on auto pilot saves our sanity.  Putting one foot in front of the other and letting our habits, chores and daily requirements give us a familiar rhythm and direction when it is too painful or exhausting to think.  

  And yet there are times, like this morning when you have the energy and desire to go off road and explore your life on a new path.  Letting that spark of curiosity override your habit of normal.  This is where we differ from robots, we become fully present and alive.  Engaged.  This is the space you'll want to cultivate.

If you need to be on auto pilot right now, then put one foot in front of the other, breathe and keep moving.  But if you are wishing for another path.  Go off road today.  Chart a new path.  Put your spirit in 4 wheel drive and hit the gas.  Set a vision and go.

Wishing you happy, inspired and nourished habits
    Denise Frakes
        Coach for you and your home

A few of my favorite things:
    Tom's book on habits is a eye opener.  If you would like to read it- click here to go directly to Amazon and order Change your habits, change your life by Tom Corley Thanks for supporting my writing and inspired thoughts.  Life is too short to let our unconscious habits run the show.

Try This:  Pay attention to how you spend your time.  How do you feel?  What are you craving?  Time to play, sunshine, writing, naps?  Best place to start is in curiosity. Want to change your life?  Change your habits.