With February already upon us, how are you doing with all those promises you made to yourself at the start of the year or maybe you haven't actually got going yet ... well the good news is ... it's always a good day to start a healthy lifestyle!
So, if you are planning to start exercising, drink more water, cut out coffee or limit your alcohol, give yourself a fighting chance to stay on track by maintaining a record. The most obvious benefit to doing this is that may start to notice patterns and triggers that throw you off track, and you can therefore come up with ways to tackle them.
Once you decide to start journaling, paper or computer, it's up to you! I’m pretty old school and still prefer to write things down using paper and pen - I find it gives me time to reflect and is quite therapeutic. However, I know many of my friends prefer to use a computer and that's fine too - whatever works for you!
The idea, however, is that you use the information to help you improve each day! So whilst its not healthy to become obsessive when you keep your log, it is important to include information which is going to help you discover the triggers which throw you off track so you can come up with strategies to avoid them. Awareness gives you choice and control - it's powerful!
Keeping a log will also help you to stay motivated and accountable, and provides a clear picture of your progress. It will remind you to celebrate all the little victories along the way, so that you begin to fall in love with the journey and not always focussing on the destination. This is important because all too often, the little victories are forgotten or dismissed, but keep in mind, you get more of what you focus on ....
Journalling also provides a loose reminder of what you’ve been doing in your life and if you read over your records, which is the point of journalling, you will gain valuable insights which you can utilise to your advantage. You can identify things which you should be grateful for, which you may have missed, things which you should celebrate, which you may not have and areas which you can improve on, in a constructive way.
Reflecting is an important part of growth and being conscious of what you are doing is key to making lasting lifestyle changes because it is the small, daily choices that eventually add up to the massive results you can achieve (or not).