I really love dominos, I like those videos that show really complex domino things happening!
I smile at the playfulness and design and that humans spend all that time setting up a domino chain reaction just to let it rip for a few seconds of joy!
Here is one that was set up and done in my home state, Michigan!
I would like to connect habits to those dominos. Or invite you to think of them as a links in the chain reaction of your day. This thing leads to another thing leads to another thing…
I have a powerful example to share!
A domino pattern I had to unlink was eating too late in the day.
I get up EARLS!
Usually 5:30 a.m., and my partner is more of a blossoms-in-the-afternoon person, as well as works some funky shifts. I would often wait to they got home from work to start dinner, or just completely forget to start dinner when I was own my own.
I would wait too long to START DINNER.
This was the key domino.
So, what’s the big deal about a later dinner.
A lot for me, it was having big effects that bled into the next day even.
Starting dinner too late meant:
I had less planning, chopping, cooking food energy, so I was more frustrated as I made said dinner.
Frequently, I was so tired by the time food was on the table, and so grumpy that I didn’t do dishes.
I would overeat just because all of the above made me a bit anxious, a trigger for not being able to pay as good attention to my fullness.
all this felt globally uncomfortable and food makes me feel comfortable so I had fatigue+anxiety playing a DUAL role in my overeating during later dinners.
I would wake up to a tornado-kitchen.
Tornado-kitchen would bite a second time, when I would be grumps yet AGAIN, because now to eat a healthy breakfast I had to hose down the kitchen before I started, or I would just double down and make a bigger mess.
That is a real yucky domino topple.
Can you see the chain of events?
Can you see how overeating, or having difficulty getting to sleep, or making a healthy breakfast is not about you not being motivated, or your will power.
It is more likely:
getting to know your flow
observing the cause and effect of earlier choices in the day
So, after noticing and naming what was going on realized I had to domino different.
I had to do it all earlier. So simple but I had to make some significant changes.
Did I have the emotion and excitement to fuel this change?
You bet I did.
I had a huge emotional stake in this change because it would improve my quality of sleep and life big time!
My partner was on board with earlier dinner and totally okay with me not waiting up or delaying dinner on funky shift days. And so I got to problem solving.
I stopped work earlier. I really love my business…and ideas…and yet, that is not my whole life!
Got started making dinner on time, between 5:00 and 5:30 so food in body by 6:00-ish.
I had to make sure my scheduled lunch time work out happened, the 4pm-6pm zone had become a back-up catch-all for workouts that didn’t go off on time or got prioritized by another habit, pushing meal prep back to 7pm and later.
I had to make sure food was in the house
I had places to order food if I knew that I did need to be somewhere during normal food making time
I shared with my family and friends that earlier dinner is better when it works (knowing that I would have to be flexible for other peoples schedules too!)
This shift led to a CASCADE of improvements!
Now that this domino starts earlier:
I go to bed less stressed with a cleaner kitchen
I can have some down time before bed
The next day I am not mentally cussing out last night Beth for the messy kitchen
I can recognize fullness because I don’t feel anxious
My partner can eat with or later, no qualms and they are just happy I am happy
To discover this, I had to notice what was going on, communicate to my human partner what I needed, and change things. I shared it with my family and friends too.
There was a lot of burps and fits as I grew this new habit.
And even in light of this realization, every night doesn’t go down perfectly, but perfect is not the goal.
I am aiming real hard for “most of the time” with all my goals and habits.
And breaking the chain and growing a new habit CREATES BRAIN BALM, ultimately reducing the anxiety of what I do when, leading to better kitchen habits, better sleep, and less grumpiness.
What do you think of habits being a chain reaction?
Can you see a positive domino in your day? Or one you would want to shine up?
Do you like the idea offing part of a group and having some one on one attention to play with movement, menu and mindset, problem solving domino stuff, I am doing a ten week program called Strong and Supported!
It slowly stirs these components together. Also, it’s great time to build the habits you would like to take into 2020!
Call me, I want to work with exactly you!