Finding Your Right Tool

Posted by on March 5, 2010 in habits | 0 comments

Most people have goals and most people have trouble doing all the things necessary to reach those goals. I’ve been experiementing with different techniques for a few years now, and this week realized a couple of tools are really helping.

A Fun, Gadget-Type Tool

Like many others, I struggle to get enough exercise. My job is sedentary and my waistline shows it. For several years I’ve been trying all sorts of things to move more. A couple of weeks ago I bought a pair of Nike+ shoes. I was hesitant about buying them because they were a little out of my price range but I found a nike promo code online and managed to make a saving. This made my purchase a lot more affordable!

If you haven’t seen them, these shoes have a spot for a sensor (which you must buy separately, of course) that communicates data about your workout to your ipod. When you sync your ipod, the data goes to the Nike+ website and you can track it there. Yes, graphs. Awesome!

Having the shoes and the sensor encourages me to take a walk/jog everyday at lunch and to track the results. It’s fun. I listen to music, check my pace and find myself wanting to sing out loud. These shoes were the right tool – at least for now. I’m enjoying them much more than a gym membership. Down the line I may go for a Fitbit after reading a review from Mobile Mob about them, but right now these shoes are perfect for me.

A Serious, but also Silly Tool

Positive self talk just seems silly. Like Stuart Smiley. Who wants to be like that? Not me. Yet, I have found that writing myself little encouragements throughout the day is a huge help. It goes something like this:

Think about how much you’ve gotten done today. Count the good stuff, don’t beat yourself up over the bad. Victory! A nutritious, healthy lunch. You didn’t eat a hamburger: good job!

And so on. You get the idea – it’s very stream-of-consciousness type stuff. I don’t share this stuff with anyone (before now, anyway), but it really does help me get through that long part of the afternoon at work when all I really want is to take a nap. It’s also very useful for days when I’m a little down.

Those are two tools I’ve been using to stay motivated lately. Do you do anything that might seem a little silly but that helps you get your stuff done?

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