the healthy habits 12-week workbook

We all want to focus on our health, but it can be one of the first things we let go when life gets busy. As we begin the holiday season, let's give ourselves the gift of health - the gift of foods that nourish our body and the gift of movement and exercise. Not because we dislike our bodies, but because we love them!

I want to share our new Healthy Habits 12-week Workbook as a motivator and guide through this journey. It will be available at a discount Cyber Monday, but today I want to share all the details you'll find inside.

And I have some really exciting news for all who pick up a workbook on Cyber Monday. On Tuesday, November 28th, we'll be diving into the workbook together! I've teamed up with a wonderful coach, Courtney Rotten, who will help guide us through our Prep Week and then keep us motivated through out the 12-weeks. It's going to be great, and I hope you'll join us!

five tips to start your new healthy habits strong

It's about that time of year where we all begin to think of our new year's resolutions. On the top of my list every year is to take better care of myself, to fuel my body with nutritious meals,  move more and maybe loose a few pounds.

But this year I'm feeling motivated and am going to get a jump start on those goals by starting in December! December is a great time of year to start new healthy habits because you can set expectations for yourself that will help you to avoid indulging in too many of those holiday goodies. Plus, once January 1st rolls around you feel as if you are ahead of the curve and already going strong.

Whether you plan to join me in December, or plan to wait till the new year, I have you covered with five tips to starting your new Healthy Habits strong. And beginning Cyber Monday you can pick up our NEW! Healthy Habits 12-week Workbook to help keep you motivated and accountable along your journey. I'll be starting my Prep Week on November 28th and diving in to the 12-weeks on December 4th. I hope you'll join me!

So pick up your pencil and press play below.

Creating Goals You Feel Connected To

It's fairly easy to take ten minutes, sit down with a pen and paper, and create a list of life goals. A great big list of those exciting Bucket List adventures, those glitzy and glamorous possessions, and of course that sense of status you hope to acquire during your lifetime.

This is how many of us travel through life. Sitting down on a whim, brainstorming what experiences and things we want in our lives, and putting that list somewhere out there in the future to work towards. But many times. we find that our goals either become dreams or mundane tasks that we now feel obligated to pursue to say we've done it. On January 1st we set a goal of losing the weight, but by the time February 1st rolls around we've either given up or are doing the work out of obligation rather than energy. Setting goals in this way doesn't work because deep down we want more. In order to feel truly connected to your goals, they need to be born out of the feelings rather than the things you desire out of life.

None of this means you can't have a goal of losing weight, buying a boat, or traveling to far off lands. This exercise is simply a way of ensuring that those are goals you truly want, that they haven't been subconsciously added to your list by outside forces or that they are 'lingering goals' - goals that have always been on your list so you might as well add them to this year's list. Through this exercise it is my hope that you will create a list of goals that are bornn out of your actual desires in life.

So, in our creation of goals, let's switch things up and begin our list with the feelings and emotions we want to enhance in our lives. Today's worksheet will help you lay this all out.

If you are following along with this series, you may be wondering why I am having you re-write your goals week after week. It's deep, scientific, and above my pay grade. But the bottom line is that writing matters - putting pen to paper matters. It creates an emotional connection to your work that simply brainstorming or even typing doesn't give you. So, print the page and write out your list!

If you completed the activity from our last post, you'll start off with the list of your Top Emotions from the bottom of your last worksheet. If you haven't completed our previous activities, take a few minutes to do that now. It will be super helpful, I promise!

Take each feeling on its own. First, you'll find ways you can infuse that feeling into your daily or weekly routine. What small actions or changes in your routine can you do to bring a small burst of that energy into your day? Then take that feeling or emotion and name a few short-term goals - goals that take a few weeks to a few months to achieve. Knowing that you are pursuing these goals because of the emotion and energy it brings you can be game changing. You'll grow that emotion into the journey of achieving that goal rather than hoping that it's sitting there waiting for you at the end. Lastly, what long-term goals do you have that match the feelings you've listed?

Some of your short-term and long-term goals may be found on your list of goals from previous worksheets. Again, we aren't trying to create an entirely new list of goals to pursue. We are simply trying to ensure that the actions we fill our lives with, the pursuits we spend our lives chasing, are fulfilling the emotional needs we have.

Looking at your new list of goals now, do you feel more connected to them? Do you feel that pursuing your goals can now change your life in a deeper way?

As new goals come up in life - as you see your house a mess and mentally add "afford a weekly housekeeper" to your list of goals - you now k now to take the time to ask yourself why? What deeper emotional need is this new "want" trying to fill? Does this goal, project, task bring me closer to growing one of these feelings in my life?

Why do we want what we want?

Our list of goals in life, whether carefully crafted and written out in detail or simply floating around in our heads, tell us something about what we really want out of life. When you take a good look at that list, achieving a goal, attaining a possession or status, is less about acquiring that thing and more about the feeling - the emotion - we are are yearning for.

You may read this and have an initial reaction of "Hey, wait a second. This trickster is going to try and talk me out of wanting that boat because it's materialistic and not what life is really all about." Don't worry - you can keep the boat on your list and hopefully have weekends filled with sunshine, lake breezes and cool cocktails! This isn't about taking materialistic goals off of your list at all, it's just about taking a good look at your list and figuring out what each goal, each achievement you are seeking, is really all about.

Let's say you have a big house on a corner lot on your goal list. You may even know which house it is. You may drive by it every Sunday afternoon. Just seeing it gives you peace and an inner motivation to take on the work week ahead of you! What you may not realize is that you don't really want that house on the corner lot. That house may signify security when you are feeling unstable. It may signify status when you are feeling less than. It may signify pride of achievement when you are feeling weary from lack of progress. There are deeper emotions at play here and in order to really connect with our goals, we must find out what we are truly searching for and better understand what we actually want out of life.

If we can attach an emotion to our goal and focus on how to bring that emotion into our lives, a funny thing can happen - our list of goals may grow or even shift. We learn that there are a number of different ways to bring that emotion into our lives, and it can happen fast than we had planned for.

I read a quote a few years back that said, "You are responsible for the energy you bring into this room". It is so true! We cannot wait for outside forces to make us happy, to feel successful, to feel optimistic or energetic. We need to bring that energy into the room with us. So, if you have a goal of buying a boat so that you can have more adventure and freedom in your life - you can keep that boat on your list. I mean, who wouldn't want a boat, right? But don't wait for the boat. Find ways to add adventure and freedom into your life right now. Wake up on Saturday, put on your sneakers, pack a lunch and a bottle of water, and go for a hike. You can infuse the emotion you are seeking into your life TODAY.

We will never achieve happiness if we put it on the other side of achievement.

In today's worksheet, you'll rewrite your too big and too small goals and attach the emotion you are seeking by reaching that goal. If you haven't read last week's post on this, start with that post. For each goal, you may find that more than one emotion comes up, and that's okay. You also may find that a single emotion is feeding many goals. Once your list is complete, pull out your top 2-4 emotions you are seeking to heighten in your life. These will be used in next week's homework!

Listening to your heart

Welcome to Building the Life You Want, our weekly series for August & September. Each week we'll be covering a new step to help you uncover what it is you really want to focus on, what type of life you want to build for yourself. If you are wanting to follow along with the series, I'd suggest giving yourself 30 minutes a week to read through the post and complete the worksheet. A new post will be available every Tuesday.

I'm excited to see where we can go when we set intentional, mindful goals for our life!

Day One: Have you ever really defined what you want out of life?

Many of us are toggling between at least two type of days.

Option One: The day goes by filled with task after task until the day is done and we chalk it up to just another one of those days.

Option Two: We get a wave of inspiration, become energized by the possibility of what the future could hold - if only we did THIS THING! But, we let that energy fade because we are either too scared to make that dream a reality or we let that list of tasks take over once again.

Unfortunately, neither of these options help us move forward and build the life we want.

I did this for years. Yes....years. I talked a big game - oh yeah, I had DREAMS! And usually I could tell you items 1-100 that I needed to do to make those dreams a reality. But, suiting up and getting myself out onto that playing field - that was another story.

I was scared.

I was scared that I'd get in over my head. Sure, I know how to do items 1-5, but that number 6 ... whew, people will surely realize that I'm not meant to be there by that point.

I was scared that because I had so many dreams that I wouldn't choose the right one. What if I get into it and it's not what I really want?

I was scared that the dream was better than the reality. As long as I kept it out there - out at some future date - it couldn't hurt me. I could make my dream as BIG as I could make it and I couldn't fail at something I was planning on doing.

I had friends and family cheering me on. People loved that I LOVED to dream and they just knew that I'd make it happen, one day.

And that was a happy place to be in - until it wasn't.

I don't think I'm alone in this. I believe many of us grew up with big dreams. We'd sit around our dorm rooms in college talking about what we'd become - someday. And we believed it. Oh yes, our someday would come - after we achieve this and get this thing done. Then we'd have time to focus on ourselves and make our dreams a reality.

Then our lives become focused on those little things, on getting ourselves settled in life. Or, those wonderful little beings called children entered our lives and the idea that it was NOW time to focus on ourselves and OUR dreams - was laughable.

We have important, grown-up things to take care of now.

All of this puts us in a place where we might not know what we really want out of life. Those dreams that we made unattainable, for the fun of it or to keep us safe from ever having to actually pursue them - they aren't really want we want out of life. Few of us can stand firmly in proclaiming that what we really want out of life is a beach house for the summer, a housekeeper, nanny and chef, a lake house for those cozy fall weekends, a mountain cabin for adventurous winters, to travel to far reaching parts of the globe, and of course to support various charities.

We've created a dream life for ourselves that is just that - a dream.

So what is it that we tell ourselves we want? We create a realistic, achievable vision for what we want out of life that's so small or responsible that it's boring.

We aren't motivated by saying we want to save for our kids college, pay off our mortgage and have enough tucked away to splurge ever once in awhile. Few people wake up with vigor and energy ready to pay off that student loan.

And nowhere in either of these definitions of what we want out of life can you find anything about what your life actually feels like.

We are stuck between dreaming too big or too small.

You dream too big and you risk it remaining a dream, never to be pursued. You dream too small and yes, you may check off those boxes, but are you living a fulfilled life?

Luckily these too big & too small dreams can give us hints as to what we are really looking for out of life!

Today's worksheet will help you brainstorm around both visions you have for your life. Both the dream life that is so big it may just remain a dream and that responsible grown-up vision for your life where you achieve everything you are supposed to achieve.

When you complete these sections, complete them with the achievements or things you've always dreamed of rather than anything you think you should be dreaming about. What I mean here is that our society has a tendency to tell us what success should look like - you know those images of the rich and famous sipping champagne on a yacht off the coast of France. If that is a media-created dream and not a dream you have in your heart, don't include it. I want YOUR big dreams.

At the bottom of the worksheet you'll find a section to write what you want your life to feel like. This is an extremely important part of goal setting that we often overlook. Imagine yourself waking up and going through your Ideal Day and all the feelings you want associated with the different pieces of your day. Use emotional words like peaceful, energized, intrigued, fulfilled, proud, inquisitive, adventurous, challenged, soul-filled, connected. Make sure you can define these words for yourself. If you include "fulfilled", in what way? What does that mean to you?

We'll continue our Build the Life You Want series next week with Why do we want what we want?