Breaking Through That Plateau
Here's my issue.... I love to feel fine. Check that. My brain loves to feel fine. I think that the issues I have with running into a plateau with my habits and then falling back down the hill that I was climbing goes back to our primal instincts.
Our brain is designed to protect us from stress. It will give us the thoughts that it thinks we need to avoid conflict. This is great except for the fact that the brain senses change as stress. So this means that when we try to change our habits, even when it is a positive change, our brain detects it as stress and desperately tries to get us to remain the same. This is the self-sabotage that people experience. I'm sure you have experienced moments when you are actively telling your self to take some action and then without knowing what happened, you are pulling into Taco Bell and pounding burritos. Ok well that what I did yesterday anyway.
I feel myself acting this way at the beginning of trying to make change and then again when I hit that plateau. I think it's easy to understand why it is hard in the beginning. Our brain is hardwired to be used to the negative habit and we have to rewire it and prepare it to be less stressful when it perceives the new positive habit.
But I have felt that I've gotten through that point and am clipping along and then at some point I just lose it. I think this goes back to what Jeff Olson talks about in the Slight Edge. It really is as simple as just keep doing what you've been doing. After reflecting on myself I have seen that I began with a great morning routing of waking up early, hydrating, praying, meditating, and setting my intentions through visualization. These habits propelled me in changing my diet and working out. But I think what happened was, I kept those morning habits alive long enough to get me into a good routine with my exercise and eating to a point where I felt comfortable. I think once I got comfortable in those habits, I told myself, "I'm good, I've got this." So I let go of my morning routine (the thing that got me to a good place) and after a while my eating and working out reverted right back to my old ways. I stopped doing the things that got me there, so I slid back down the hill. Seems so simple but it's something I've never thought about. Makes sense to me.
So now, here I am back at the bottom of the hill, restarting my morning rituals to restart the good habits I want to create, but this time I will keep doing what I'm doing to keep getting what I've got!