I’ve struggled with two things throughout my adult life: My weight and my money.
I always seem to hover at about 10 to 20 pounds overweight. I’ve struggled to stay out of debt, get out of debt, and save money.
And I’ve noticed that there’s something I do every time I strive to make a fresh start.
I’ll finish off a candy bar and decide that I’m going to eat better starting next Monday. If my budget gets a little out of control, I’ll tell myself that I will start fresh next month. If I don’t get any exercise, I’ll tell myself that I will try to go for a walk on the weekend. If I eat dinner out, I’ll tell myself that I won’t go out the following week.
At the time, it feels like I am making a plan. It feels like I’m in control. But all I’m really doing is putting things off and making excuses. It’s easier to put off making big changes for another day than it is to get started on them right away. It’s easier to allow more bad behavior than it is to take the steps to stop it.
The truth is that there is nothing magical about a new month, or a new week, or the next afternoon. And it is all too easy to find new excuses when those arbitrary timelines arrive.
If we want to change something in our lives, we have to work on making small incremental steps toward positive change each and every day. We can’t wait for the stars to align and the situation to be just right because that’s not how life works. We’re rarely ever presented with perfect conditions.
It’s okay to make mistakes, to eat the doughnut or buy the new blouse. It’s not okay to continue to make mistakes and expect that change will occur tomorrow, a week, or a month from now, simply because that’s what you’ve told yourself.
A healthier lifestyle begins with the very next bite of food you put in your mouth. Better relationships begin with the next words that come out of your mouth. Better financial management begins with the very next time you spend money. Not in a week, not in January, not next month.
Every decision you make has the power to effect change. The question becomes, “What will you decide?”
Do you continue to make excuses for why your life is not the way you want it to be? Or do you start making small changes with the very next decision you make?
I don’t know about you, but I think a fresh start begins now.