If You Fail to Plan, You Plan to Fail: 13 Tips To Creating A balanced Lifestyle
The best plan of action on paper doesn’t mean shit if you can’t translate it into your life. One of the keys to building and developing a balanced lifestyle approach is to actual base the system off you. The lifestyle you desire, the goals you want to obtain, your health, your history, your priorities, your family, your beliefs, your career, the demands/challenges of your every day and ultimately your emotional attachment with food/substance. The best plan of action is the one that takes all of these variables into account to create a consistent, sustainable & effective system for you.
First & foremost we must create a short term and long term vision for exactly what you are after and where you want to be. Without having a destination or vision it is very hard to create a road map or plan of action to make those visions a reality. When we create a plan of action we must delve into your current lifestyle to audit and identify the habits and cycles that you’re operating through on daily, monthly and yearly basis. Awakening you and bringing awareness is the first step to conquering bad habits, addictions or triggers that are going to pull you away from what you desire. When you have a goal, a goal your truly want to accomplish you have to be willing make inherent sacrifices…we know where we want to go, now we have to remove or control the things that will ultimately deter you from finding balance and obtaining the life you desire. Here are some tips on how to take control of your life:
- Be willing to reflect, unbiased on your current situation and lifestyle. If you’re not willing to take ownership in what you’re doing then the conversation starts and ends here.
- If you’re unhappy with yourself, forgive yourself first and be ready to work and learn. If you don’t believe in yourself then expect to fail, no one is going to do this for you. You have to do the work, so wrap your head around that.
- Focus on finding rhythm in the areas that are easy to control. Your body loves rhythm and consistency, especially with your sleep wake cycles. Its important to structure bed times and wake times to maximize your focus, energy, recovery and perspective. These aren’t set in stone, but having structure is key to balancing your lifestyle. If sleep is out of whack, then most likely your day will follow suit, but on the reverse if you balance your sleep, then most likely your day will follow suit.
- Be consistent with getting enough sleep. An average sleep cycles last 90 minutes and we need about 4-5 cycles per day to function at optimal levels. Look at your whole week when trying to achieve maximal sleep cycles, you’re trying to get 35 cycles per week. If you can’t achieve those at night, then look at adding daytime naps. Power naps as short as 20 minutes and up to 90 minutes can be counted as a sleep cycle.
- Design a morning routine to ignite your day. Focus on natural triggers to start your day rather then reaching for coffee first thing. Exposure to light is the key to shutting down melatonin production and allow your natural ability to wake up come in to effect. Light, movement, hydrations and for you brave souls, cold water therapy are all great ways to light up your day.
- Take a look at the demands of your day to create a plan of action for hydration, supplementation and nutrition. If you’re sitting a desk most of the day and your brain is the utmost importance then make sure your nutrition aligns with cognitive function & focus, so focusing on foods that prime the brain would be better suited; protein + fat. If your day is very physically demanding then the focus would be on rejuvenation and recovery along with foods that prime and focus; a more balanced approach or iso caloric; protein, carbohydrates & fats.
- Make a schedule for exercise & training. Having a work out planned in the morning, afternoon or evening will give purpose to your nutrition. When I start with new clients for nutrition or training I always make sure they are eating correctly before & after work outs. Usually when they see the benefits from the nutrition, translate into there training it spawns better nutrition at other points of the day.
- Train with intensity & purpose, understand that heavy breathing and sweating doesn’t always constitute to the results you want. High intensity work outs have there place, but if you’re already high stressed then your training shouldn’t add more stress, its should coexist with your day and provide destressing and make you feel better. Structured weight training should be the base of your training plan, then sprinkle in H.I.I.T & outdoor fun activities for cardio.
- Training should not only be focused on building muscle and burning fat, but also on creating structural balance and bringing us out of the compensation patterns we develop in our every day life. As we age our ability to fight gravity decrease and we get pulled downward towards the earth, its super important that we are constantly working on proper position and posture to create healthy and everlasting bodies.
- Your nutrition, hydration & supplementation should be focusing on internal health over your external physique. Your beautiful physique should be a by product of your immune health and internal functions. Focus on digestion gut health, PH balance and reducing systematic inflammation, if you balance these it will be much easier to build muscle & burn fat.
- Create Pillars to propel and accelerate you towards your goals. If I know I like to have a bigger dinner and something sweet after then instead of fighting and resisting that urge (which eventually you will cave) I would suggest planning a good health meal and dessert that fits into your plan of action and keeps you feeling satisfied mentally.
- Focus on small goals that attribute to our big overall goal. Chip away at small goals daily, all of these small battles will help you to take down that big vision and goal. You’ll reach forks in the road multiple times through the day, make sure the choice you make aligns with the goals and visions you have for yourself.
- Create milestones and reward yourself for achieving them, but then get back on track. Navy seals training is some of the hardest and most grueling on the planet. These guys new what they were getting into and instead of looking at the daunting task at hand, they shifted there perspective to the small reward. They would have to jog 10 miles in full gear to dinner, but they knew they could eat and have a beer, and that was there focus on that small reward, not the fact they had to get geared up and make the 10 mile journey home there bunker.