In the words of Aristotle, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” So why is it that we are always trying to derail the habits that we know are good for us?
Weekends, cheat days, this occasion and that occasion. We are constantly coming up with reasons why we are allowed to skip our workout, drink in excess, or eat whatever we lay our eyes on. Now don’t get me wrong, I do not believe in a strict regime with no room for treats. What I do believe in is everything in moderation.
The first step in becoming healthy starts with our mindset. If we are always counting down the days, minutes, hours until our next “cheat” then are we really making our health a priority? As many of you know, I recently traveled to Italy. Not once was I pouty thinking, “Oh my gosh – I’m in this amazing place and all I should eat is salad” but I also didn’t think, “WOW! Italy! A once in a lifetime adventure so refill my Chianti and bring me another cannoli.” Because I have made my life a habit of everything in moderation, I was able to enjoy all the amazing food experiences without regret and without feeling deprived.
There is an article entitled 12 Weekend Habits of Highly Successful People, in which we hear about some of the habits of Ben Franklin, Richard Branson, Robert Iger (the CEO of Disney), Oprah and others, It’s very cool to see how they view their habits in relationship to the success they have achieved. The article addresses everything from weekend sleep patterns, multi-tasking, planning, exercise, and JOMO (the joy of missing out).
Our weekends are so important. Our minds and bodies need rejuvenation – no doubt about it. However, we can rejuvenate without sleeping until noon, partying too hard on Friday night, throwing mindful eating out the window, and ignoring the need that our body has to move, move, move! A big part of the rejuvenation process is not throwing yourself so off course during the weekend that you struggle when Monday rolls around.
When we use our weekends to over-indulge or to curl up in a cocoon for 72 hours, we are taking our entire body system and putting it on a roller coaster. Go, go, go, stop, stop, stop. Up and down. Here and there. It simply isn’t healthy. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy your weekends. Of course you can!
Sleep in if that is what you enjoy doing (just don’t sleep in until 2pm). Go out for cocktails with your friends on Saturday night (just don’t do it Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night). Skip the gym (just choose something else to do in place of gym time like going for a nice hike with your pup, taking a long walk on the beach, try out a new yoga class you’ve been wanting to try.)
Remember, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.”
Wishing you an excellent weekend. I would love to hear how you spent yours.