• The Hopefulist

The #2 rule of the Hopefulist

What is the #1 rule of 'The Hopefulist'? That's right! Don't ever call yourself bad names. So, the second rule is....don't break promises to yourself. It's something we've all done and some of us do it on the regular. We need to stop. It's one of the main reasons we fail to achieve our goals!

I read a story once about a woman who had decided she wasn't going to break promises to herself. She had on her to-do list a half hour workout on her elliptical trainer but she ended up staying at a dinner with her friends much later than planned. So there she was at 11 pm doing her workout. Wow, right? Admittedly I likely wouldn't have done it at that point. But she made a promise to herself and she refused to break it. That's commitment, that's dedication, that's discipline!

Why are we so likely to keep promises to everyone else in our lives but we brush ourselves off so easily? Why do we think we don't have to keep our word to ourselves? It likely goes back to something in our childhood. The model we had for ourselves or the sense of worth we had at the time. But when you know better, you do better. Right? We know that we are worth it. We know that we can do anything we put our minds to. We know that we are badass. Now, we just have to believe it!

In order to transition to the type of person who doesn't break promises to herself is to ease into it and start slowly. Do you have to-do lists for the day? Don't put anything on it that you don't think you may not get done. I have a bad habit of writing down all these things and I'm happy if I get to most of them. NO...that is not the right way. Don't write it down unless you KNOW you can get it done. Why? Because the more you blow off you own list the more you don't believe in your ability to get it done. You end up making a list of things that is a maybe list. This is why we don't believe ourselves when we try to take on a new habit or reach for a new goal.

Get really clear with yourself. Be realistic and don't take on too much. What are the things that absolutely have to get done today? Write them down. What are the other things you would like to get done? Only write it down if you are absolutely sure you can get it done. Once you start crossing everything off your list everyday you will realize you can do what you say and that will give you confidence to keep striving for more. And here's a little secret. You can do more than is on your list. That is called "bonus territory"! And how great will you feel when you are doing even more than you require of yourself. But let's not get ahead of ourselves. Let's work on just get everything done on your list.

It's trial and error right now so don't be too hard on yourself. If you are lessening the amount on your list and still not getting it all done then you are still putting too much on it. I know what you're saying...but I need to get it all done. But you already aren't so figure out a way to get things done when they have to be but not so you set yourself up to fail. We tend to require so much of ourselves, too much and then bash ourselves for not being able to do it. Read your typical to-do list. Is this something you would expect your kids or best friend to do? Is not, then your list is too long. Be patient. Take on a little at a time. Once you realize you can keep your word to yourself you become unstoppable! And that is an amazing feeling.

I know you can do this. Start slow. Don't take on too much. See how much you can actually do before piling more on. And treat yourself with grace while learning this new process. It won't happen overnight. Be consistent and strict. It will all come together. And soon you will realize if you say you will get it done, you know you will.

Happy hump day! Scale back on that to-do list. Remember, write down only what you know you can get to. And move on from there. Now go on out there and be badass. I'm always here, cheering you on!

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