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  • Writer's pictureChantal

Follow Up Friday - Old Habits Die Hard

Updated: Feb 13, 2019

So when I chose focussing on getting a minimum of 7 hours of sleep a night for my Weekly ONE Thing, I knew it sounded very easy, but also that it would be a challenge for me. However, I didn't realize it would be as much of a challenge as it was. My first night, I knew what time I needed to be in bed, based on what time I had to get up the next day. I managed that okay. But what I didn't anticipate, was that my body might not immediately adjust to my plan, and it took me some time to fall asleep. Apparently my body was used to going to bed late and didn't agree to fall asleep the minute my head hit the pillow. So I fell short of my sleep goal that first night by about 30 minutes. Not bad. I felt pretty good with that amount of sleep. I found it was easier to get up in the morning, I was more energetic for my run the next day and I was more productive, overall.

The second day I got even more than 7 hours of sleep and I felt great. But I did notice that even though I could have gone to bed even earlier than I needed to, I kept finding things to do - fold another load of laundry, remember something I had wanted to check out online, spend more time on doing stretches before bed. It was almost like I wanted to sabotage my goal because I was so used to going to bed later. Because I was focusing on that ONE thing - sleep- I had a lot more awareness on my engrained habits.

I already knew on Day 3 , that I might not meet my goal because friends had come in from out of town and we were going to celebrate one of their birthdays, by going out to dinner that night. I knew it might be a late night because it was a special occasion to all be together. I also knew that I had to be up extra early the next morning to get my daughter to her 7am basketball practice. And my anticipations did not prove wrong. We had a fun celebration night and I did not get to bed until after 12:30am. So on the one hand, I failed to meet my goal, but on the other hand, I realized that it was a conscious choice that I was okay with. One of my highest values in life is relationships. So the value in having that special evening with my friends, trumped my desire to focus on my health goal. It also highlighted to me that when I say "Yes" to one thing in my life, I am forced to say "No" to something else (something my wise coach once said to me). It also made me aware that I love having many experiences in life and often choose to say "Yes" to every opportunity that sounds interesting or fun. When I do that, sometimes it means saying "No" to other things like, self-care, peacefulness, or sleep.

So even though I didn't have 100% success with my goal this week, I did have some great realizations. I am going to continue this focus on sleep for the remainder of this week and will continue to keep that focus, because I see value in it. And I also realize that I might not always meet that goal because there are times where other values will trump my sleep goal. But when I don't meet that goal, it will be a conscious choice.

I won't always write so much feedback and would rather hear from you on your experiences. I learned a lot this week and I hope you did too. I am excited to continue with this and look forward to a new Weekly ONE Thing starting on Monday!

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