Updated: Feb 20
3 habits in 30 minutes that will change your life
Are you stuck in a daily routine that you are not happy with? Feel like you are stuck in a rut? Sick and tired or being sick and tired. The lifestyle you have now wasn’t created overnight. The accumulation of weight since your ideal goal probably took quite a while to add up. Most of us find ourselves feeling this way at some point in our lives. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be that way. 3 simple steps you can do today that will absolutely transform your position and attitude of life. These three simple steps if done consistently will change everything thing as you know it. These steps are simple, they are not necessarily easy. And they will take time to develop. I know it sounds ridiculous and all the self-help guru’s claim the same song and dance ready to sell you a coaching package. While I am here to help, I’m NOT here to sell you anything. Everything I am about to share with you can be found for free with just a small amount of effort and research. But if you don’t want to do that, just follow these next few chapters and I will walk you through it. These are the steps that I implemented into my life a while ago and the effects have literally changed who I am and my direction in life. They are what put my here today in front of this computer typing a lifestyle renovation blog.
Ok, so here we go. The idea is to simply create time for yourself. I know, I know, it sounds crazy. Just stick with me. 30 minutes of me time. Everyday, no matter what. I STRONGLY encourage this me time is first thing in the morning (hopefully before anyone else is awake). You have 3 simple daily goals to accomplish and they can be done within these 30 mins. They are Pray, Sweat, Read. Hang in there. I promise its worth it.
The Set Up – Find your happy place
First things first. The whole idea around the 30 minute morning me time is exactly that. It is time for you it is a time for you to have just for yourself. It is your selfish time. So in the beginning, what ever that looks like to you, then do it. But first find the right space/place. It can be any where you are comfortable ( just not the bed, so you don’t fall back asleep). A great place can be your closet. When I first started doing this, I took a big pile of clothes in the closet and made a big bean bag like chair that I settled into and really enjoyed the experience. I also like to bring a beverage. A cool glass of water, tea or coffee….. Again whatever is your pleasure and whatever you enjoy. The key to a good “me spot” is that it be comfortable, and away from everyone else so that you can use your voice and not disturb. It is also a place where you will not be disturbed by all the outside distractions (that is why it is good to do this early before anyone else is awake). So now you are up, you have your warm beverage and you and in your comfortable spot in a comfortable but somewhat upright position. Let’s begin.
Pray – Or not really
You don’t not need to be a religious person to complete this task. If you don’t believe in a God, no problem. If you are religious and fi you already say a specific (or memorized prayer) this is not that. This is a simple two step process. It is the simply purposeful reflection. Take the first 2 minutes or so and come up with 10 specific things you are thankful for. You don’t have to believe in a higher power to be grateful for the things you have in this life. The goal is to come up with a different 10 things every day. Of course you are thankful for your family and friends. Shelter and food. But what else. Go deeper. The exercise is to think. To think of things you take for granted. Thankful for the park they opened near my house. Thankful for the birds chirping as the sun comes up on my morning run. Thankful for the much needed rain that cooled the summer heat wave. And here’s food for thought. Spend the last minute or so being thankful for your challenges and difficulties. Sounds a bit off I know but think it through. These challenges help us grow. Rise to the occasion. We are typically better off at the conclusion of these challenges. Can one be thankful for cancer? Thankful for UC or Crones disease? My wife got to meet the Governor’s wife at a transfusion center while she was getting an infusion for her UC. They had a great conversation that never would have happened had they not been both dealing with a tragic set of circumstances. Don’t get me wrong, you would never want a disease to meet someone famous but to have relatable circumstances as others brings us all closer together. When we learn to develop this type of mentality, the world becomes a little smaller. People a little less stranger. Tasks become a little easier. Obstacles seem a little more manageable . Now that you have been thankful, its time to ask. I don’t know much about the Bible but there is one scripture I like. Mark 3:32. “Ask.” “Ask and you will receive.” Pretty straight forward right? But what to ask for? Ask for it all. Why not? What’s the worst that could happen? Every morning, ask for what you want. Ask for the help you need. Ask for the strength to see it through. Ask for experiences. Don’t ask for a lighter load. Ask for broader shoulders. Ask for the opportunities. But be careful what you wish for. Be careful for what you ask? Because while it will be presented to you it often shows up disguised as hard work. It shows up in ways we are not prepared for but must adapt to. We take advantage of what is given. What is presented.
Read – Or at least Get the Information
I know, again this sounds a little to basic. A little too easy. And yet very few people do it consistently. I loved to read, I grew up reading. I actually considered it a hobby for a good part of my life. But as an adult, it is hard. It is hard to stay focused, often having to reread the same paragraph 3 and 4 times trying to get back in the groove. And some books are challenging. Some reading takes immense concentration. Try grasping Dostoyevsky while your toddler is using the bedroom wall for their art canvas. But we must seek the information. This morning routine and evening routine (when I’m lucky) are the only times I get to actually read books. So I try to be sure to include scripture with that reading. I do at least a chapter but even 1 verse I think is a great way to start your day. Even if you are not religious. Even if you are of a different religion. Its ok to take a peak at what all the hype is about. It is ok to read the Torah, Book of Mormon, the Koran or Hindu Vedas. There are valuable lessons that can be learned from all of these ancient texts. And there are no right or wrong ways to do this. It is just for you. My second wife had a habit for a brief period of just letting the bible fall open in her lap. And she would read that page. Inevitably she would find an answer to a problem or a platitude for a difficulty she was struggling with. You don’t have to be Jewish to take away a valuable piece of insight from the Torah that might relate to your current situation. You don’t have to get baptize to take away valuable standards from the Articles of Faith of Latter Day Saints as a way to live your life. There is a reason these books are still around today. There are so many principles in these books that can still be applied today. Probably more than ever. And if not, no harm no foul. At least you can show off to your religious friends.
So now that you have read a brief spiritual thought for the day, take the next 10 mins or so to read something beneficial to you. Something that will make you smarter. But only something that interests you. But preferable not fiction. This is not the time to get lost in your favorite murder/mystery. This is not the time to get hung up on a romance novel. This is your personal knowledge development time. Learning time. But learning what you actually want to know more about. Whether it be generic personal development like Think and Grow Rich” or “7 Habits” It can/should also be specific to what compels you. What /how you want to grow your business. Whether its “crushing it” to learn how to take advantage of social media for both your personal and professional brand, or “The Music Lesson” by Victor Wooten for a career in that field. The point is to enjoy it. To learn, improve and grow in the areas that interest you. By learning more about what you like and are good at, you will be open to more possibilities and experiences in that field. One step closer to doing something that you are passionate or at least interested in. And isn’t that better that what your doing now? It will also help you define your role in that area, what’s your focus. What aspects are you good at or enjoy. Reading accomplishes all these things.
Another great way to increase your knowledge is through audio books and podcasts. These are great time savers. We can acquire a wealth of knowledge in our spare time (driving, exercising, standing in line) but that should never take the place of our morning reading time. Actually a great exercise I adopted was going back to read a book I had listened to and enjoyed. I seem to always get more out of it the when reading that info after having heard it. The evening reading time is a great time for fiction or fantasy or easy reading. This is a great way to unwind as an alternative to TV.
Sweat – Or at least get the blood flowing.
Last but certainly not least is sweating. This is such a vital part of our overall health and state of being. Exercise has virtually no down side and the upside is pretty much endless. Lower cholesterol, blood pressure, heart disease, etc. etc. We all know the drill. But this can be hard. It can seem daunting or tedious. But once you develop the habit, it will absolutely transform your life a year from now. It is the one habit that should always take precedent. There are so many ways to do this and whatever activity speaks to you, go for it. Enjoy what your doing. Whether a brisk walk in the park, and quick squat/ push up combination set. There is no excuse for not getting your heart rate up at least once a day. If you have never really exercised before, Johnson and Johnson has a great started fitness app to get you going called 7 minute workout. And if you are already in a groove, keep it up. Pick a race or set a goal to step up your progress. The only caveat to this is on Sunday. I personally choose to use Sunday as a day of rest. While its pretty obvious I still read and pray, I don’t not compete, race or train. IF I am having a really bad day, I will go on a n easy run walk to clear my head. And Sunday is the best day for taking a walk or stroll as a family or group dynamic , but not for the purpose of sweating.
That’s it. I know it doesn’t seem like much, but give it a try. It may not be quite as easy as it seems. When I first started this I was surprised at how much I struggled at different periods. Some times I would rock and roll through a week no problem, other times I hardly made a dent at all. Vacations, disruptions and schedule conflicts all create challenges but everyday started this way results in gain and improvements or at least more clarity and focus. They are small and seemingly insignificant actions, but over time they build momentum and real change begins to manifest itself around you. Using these 3 simple techniques will help you be more aware of these changes and how to best take advantage of them. I write mine down on my bathroom mirror with a dry erase marker. I add a check for each goal achieved each day per week. This gives me a great at a glance peak as to how well I am doing as the week goes by. Weeks that are full tend to be a lot better and more productive than those that don’t. Give it a try and let me know how it goes. Thanks for reading and have an EXTRAordinary week!