The New Year is around the corner and if you are looking to have a successful year, I want to encourage you to build and strengthen your mindset. As a fitness coach, I spend lots of time in the gym helping people work on their physical strength. But the longer I have been in this industry, the more focused I am on guiding people to improve their self-worth and confidence. Lacking in these areas will force people to give up on their goals and aspirations. I am surprised at how many people set limits on themselves and do not believe in their own abilities. Creating a confident mindset and believing in yourself are such key components to accomplishing your goals. But just like strengthening your physical body needs exercise, building a strong mindset will take daily work also.
Here are a few practical mindset conditioning strategies to start with:
· Start with 5-20 minutes of daily reading. Topic ideas: Mindset, fitness, nutrition, self-development, inspirational/motivational, autobiographies, sports performance, leadership, spiritual. Getting your mind right each day by reading positive and inspirational books or articles is key to creating optimism in your life.
· Meditate 3-5 times a week for 5-10 minutes. Simply sit in a quiet place (or listen to calming music), and focus on deep inhales, followed by a pause, then a deep exhale, followed by another pause. This practice will deflate anxiety and stress and assist in self-awareness.
· Exercise 3-6 times a week for 30-60 minutes. This could be as simple as daily walking or as intense as training for an Ironman triathlon. Know that fitness will tremendously strengthen your mind. Exercise helps release the brain chemicals dopamine, serotonin and endorphins. These chemicals activate happiness. In other words, after a workout, you feel more confident and mentally stronger. If you are training for a specific event, you do not need to overcook your body. Find the minimum dosage required to get the result you are looking for. Overtraining leads you away from your goals. The key to your fitness goals is to be consistent. Fitness and exercise does not have to be everything you think about, but you do need to implement it into your life.
· Eat a nutrient dense breakfast every morning. Get a good mix of your important macro-nutrients: protein, fat and carbohydrates. From there, make healthy decisions most of the day. Eating a nutrient dense diet supplies the body its vital minerals and vitamins. The more nutrients you consume, the better you will mentally and physically feel. Food choices: Eggs, yogurt, any fruit, dark greens and other vegetables, avocado, natural peanut butter, whole grain toast, potatoes and beans. Limit processed sugars, simple carbohydrates, and fatty foods.