goals

Altruistic August….It’s cool to be kind

Namaste everyone.

Namaste to you and all your mates.

I love that word. I think if you put it on the end of any sentence it can excuse whatever words just preceded it.  Like “hey, I’m enjoying your new black and white Supre jumper today. How many magpies had to throw up on that in production I wonder…namaste”, all would be well between the people involved in that friendly exchange.

I don’t actually know the exact translation of namaste, but I know it has to do with meditation….which is a good segue to May to Julys goal to meditate more.  I extended it to July, because I’m super keen on the benefits of meditation, and hadn’t done so much of it in May. July went better, and I did fit in at least 2 x 15 minute sessions per week but still, not as much as I’d liked. This one’s a work in progress for me, and one I am going to continue on.

But with August came a new goal to try. My goal for August is centred around altruism. “Atruistic August” if you will. Altruism is a bit of a fancy word. It’s probably my hardest goal month to roll off the tongue, but aside from Fun Feb, it might just be my favourite. For one, it was fun to research. Above and beyond wikipediaing the definition of altruism, I came across some people doing some impressive stuff in the world and great ways to be more altruistic.

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Meditation May……be I should give this another go-around

If this lil guy can do it....

It’s almost the end of June and I regret to say that my goal for May was not achieved. Though I’m not too regretful, because it’s really normal not to achieve all your goals straight up, and one goal a month for a year was a bit ambitious, wasn’t it?

For May, the goal was to start meditating regularly.  Just a bit, say 15 minutes 3 times per week. I started off well for the first week then dwindled from there.

There are oodles of benefits to regular meditation. It can help reduce stress, increase physical health, manage chronic pain, make you sleep better and feel happier. The science behind what it does to the brain is also really impressive, and discussed in more detail below.

So if it’s so good for me……

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New Years Revolution

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I love Kikki K.

There. I said it.

Kristina Karlsson is a genius and she makes many a girl like me very happy. I love kikki k so much that I could easily spend every day of my life browsing the shelves of a kikki k store, imagining the perfect home office in my perfect future swedish inspired house with its perfect streamlined bright decor, packed with pretty post-it notes, fun to-do lists and an endless supply of kikki k pens.

My latest kikki k “investment” included a “Happiness Journal” in a bright, cheery yellow, with ever so delicate gold lettering. What actually drew me to the Happiness Journal is that it’s prompted me to take a new approach to New Years Resolutions this year.

This year, instead of setting a ridiculous resolution I’ll never keep (climb Mt Everest, find a cure for diabetes, bring roller blading back – Drew Barrymore and the Mighty Ducks are equally responsible for that pipe dream), I’ll set 12 little ones! One a month. And they’ll be slightly more realistic.

Predictably, January is an exercise resolution. And I’m keeping it achievable. I had a little hiatus from exercise at the end of last year….most of last year….and it’s time to get back on the wagon. Shamefully uncreative, I’m calling it Gym January (the start of each word sounds the same, get it)? I’m going to the gym twice a week in my lunch break.  Obviously most days of the week is most ideal, but nothing is the least ideal. Like we say in the world of health coaching, anything is better than nothing. I’ll be doubling the amount of exercise I did last year! I’ll leave the benefits of exercise to another post, but I’ll assure you that my exercise goal is not all in the name of vanity (though it is a bit).

Over two weeks in and I’m on target. I’ve even managed a few extra days of exercise each week. That’s the benefit of starting with a small, achievable goal. You’ll find that you’ll meet it plus some extra. Things start to gel and it flows over into other parts of your life. Of course there will be challenges, and times you’re less motivated, but starting with one small step is always the best place to start.

So what are my other 11 resolutions? The list is yet to be finalised but a few candidates are Sleep September, Money March and Meditation May (see what I did again there, the letters are the same at the start of each word, that’s word art). I won’t be in my pi’s for the whole of September, but focusing on a regular sleep routine. I’m chucking finance in there. And a little meditation – I’m talking 5 minutes a day – has oodles of proven health benefits. Volunteer work is going to be in there somewhere to, but no months start with V, so I’m a bit stumped, but I’ll get there. And I’m definitely up for suggestions – of the word art or resolution variety.

As to how it all plays out, I’ll keep you posted….on cute little post-it notes with swedish forest life on them….

Goal setting 101 – The “SMART” approach 1) Be Specific – Vague goals such as “I’m going to exercise more” won’t work. What will you do? How will you do it? When will you start? 2) Make it Measurable – Include a quantity of “how much” or “how many”, such as I will walk twice per week for 30 minutes 3) Set small, achievable, Action-oriented goals – Set goals you have control over and can change.Focus on a behaviours or an action rather than thoughts and feelings 4) Be Realistic  – No point aiming to run the half-marathon every day if for the past 6 months you’ve been hosting Will & Grace marathons on the couch 5) Have a Time Frame – Give yourself a period of time or a target date to work on your goal. A week to a month is usually a good starting point

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