Excuses, habits and an unkempt house

By Marina Perry-Kuhn

I was walking down stairs last night as I went to bed and had a thought as I passed a pile of toys and a towel on the floor.

I now, after years of living in units and small post war houses with no cupboard space, live in a large modern home. Sure, its no mansion but big enough. I remember all too often in the past proclaiming that when I had a house that offered a place for everything, it would be so easy to be clean and have a tidy home.

It was this thought that brought a smile to my face. I now have more cupboard space in my wardrobe than my last house had in its entirety yet, there is still stuff lying around everywhere. Why? Because I didn’t change my habits. There might be space for everything but if I’m not doing the work to put it there, no prizes for guessing my house stays a mess.

I see this same thing happen with clients.

Firstly there are those clients who are postponing rehabbing their less then favourable habits till something else in their life is better, larger, sorted, easier… etc. You know who you are. Come on, we all know someone who says, ” yeah I’m going to get back into my exercise once I sort the house out, unpack the boxes, get the kids settled in school”. It doesn’t actually matter what condition you choose to insert, as they are all the same thing, a delaying tactic you use to try to give credibility to your procrastination.

And secondly, once that ‘essential’ thing is sorted, we tend to see no changes with respect to the other priority… because lets be brutally honest, it hasn’t become a priority yet. And the thing is until it does honestly become a priority you won’t make the necessary habit changes that are required to elicit the results we say we want.

If I don’t begin forcing myself to hang up all the girls (and my) towels and clothes and pack away their toys everyday, it can’t become a automatic habit that longer term will render my house spick and span. Likewise, it you don’t begin fitting in exercise within your week (forcibly wedging it in initially if necessary) how can it become habit. Without it becoming habit, how can it positively impact your life in the way you know it can and say you want it to.

It isn’t easier for others to fit their exercise in I can tell you. It’s just that they’ve allowed it to be a priority that’s risen to the top of the pile. A good friend of mine( and fellow lean mumma) recently commented that exercise is a not-negotiable for her. Plainly, she’s created a habit, reinforced it and can now rely on that habit to remain in tack regardless of what life throws her way.

So consider what is truly important to you. If its your health and fitness then remember, until it becomes a genuine priority that you decide and then enact habits around its will always remain a future-paced, one-day, ideal-life daydream, because….

Nothing changes, if nothing changes.

Obviously my health and fitness is of greater importance to me than a spotless home. That’s my choice with regards to my priorities. That may not be yours. But while I work on training and coaching myself into the world’s greatest puter-awayer, consider this. I can outsource my house cleaning and still reap the rewards of that task being completed, but I can’t send someone out to do my run, my pilates or my resistance session and gain the many benefits. Just saying :-)