by Jenifer Truitt, Executive Director Ziglar Family
Let me start with this:
If you can relate at all, raise your hand! 🙋🏼♀️ 🤣
So, here we are again… the new school year is underway, and we’re full of the same sort of inspiration and motivation that we have on January 1st.
Not only are we making a little bit more of an effort on those packed lunches and family dinners, but many of us are taking advantage of the whole “kids are back in school” thing to start back up with our fitness routines!
However, as with our true “New Year’s Resolutions,” these “School Year Resolutions” are likely to be short-lived if we don’t approach them the right way.
In my experience, the best way to achieve long-term success with any goal is to start with manageable, bite-sized pieces, and just ‘eat that elephant’ one bite at a time.
For example, maybe instead of holding myself to a standard of packing healthy, well-balanced, delicious, beautifully-crafted boxed lunches every day, I commit to making sure there is at least one piece of fruit and a vegetable in each lunch. That, for me, is far more likely to happen!
Thinking about this topic reminded me of the fantastic advice that fitness and health guru Larry North shared with the Ziglar Family community back in May for our latest 7-Day Family Challenge. (If you missed it, you can still check it out here and catch Larry, plus six other fantastic experts, sharing their best advice for families!)
Here is a bit of what Larry taught about how to take small steps in the right direction to make some healthy, positive, long-lasting changes:
First, here’s what I’d like you to do, either as an individual or as a family: all I want you to do is add a healthy meal.
Just incorporate one healthy meal for now, whatever you think that healthy meals should be, whatever you think it is.
If for you that’s a salad, or it’s a yogurt, or it’s turkey sandwich… great!
I just want you to attempt to raise your consciousness to making a better choice for your body.
Next, I want you to just go for a walk. Take five minutes, 10 minutes, whatever you feel is important… just move your body. Make it a point to go and do something physical, but light, fun and easy.
Then I do want you to do a muscle building activity, whether it’s a pushup, whether it’s several pushups, whether it’s lifting weights, whether it’s doing some lunges just in the privacy of your own home… you don’t have to own any special exercise equipment or any special clothing. Just do something simple that’s going to work your muscles.
You don’t have to be perfect, because it’s not about perfection. It’s about progress, and believe me, if you start implementing little tidbits of good, healthy behaviors, you’re going to see changes in your body and health.
While Larry’s advice is in the fitness and health arena, you can see how the same principle can easily apply to many of the challenges we face when the school year starts up. For example:
Instead of committing to 5 nights of running to extracurricular activities each week, choose only one or two that will have you out just a couple of times per week.
Instead of insisting on sitting down for an hour of homework each night immediately after school, allow 30-minutes to one hour for a ‘decompression’ block, and then commit to a few 15-minute segments of work (or whatever is age appropriate) over the course of the evening.
Instead of expecting to keep your entire house cleaned and picked up by the end of every day, choose one room per day to focus on, and have everyone chip in.
The bottom line, here, is that instead of making grand plans for sweeping behavioral changes at the outset of the new school year, you’d be much better off focusing on taking small, positive steps every day toward healthier and more productive habits.
You can do it! Have a GREAT school year!
What are some of your tips and strategies for a successful school year schedule? Share them below!