15 minutes to change
When looking out at a NEW YEAR ahead, it can be exciting for people to set HUGE goals and life-changing resolutions, yet, in my office this week, the theme has been the power of small changes.
Upon reflection over the past year, my clients and I have noticed that the biggest, most powerful changes, have come from the little steps taken consistently each day. By incorporating 15 minute daily activities that promote movement in a postive direction, people begin noticing a shift in the qualiy of their lives, and their general well-being.
Planning 15 mintues activities is less intimidating than making big committments to things we may not be able to stick with. Everyone can find 15 minute time slots in a day to foster change and positivity. Instead of looking at the big picture of everything, I ask the people I work with to choose 15 minute blocks of time that eventually become positive habits and lead to desired change.
If you’re working on organizing your house, stop waiting for a full day or week, to really get at it all. Start by setting 15 minutes aside once a day or even once a week to do one little thing that helps with the bigger project at hand. In 15 minutes you can probably go through a box that needs sorting, orgazine a drawer, put some stuff in a container and label it, throw out expired products, purge a few items of old clothes from your closet. The list goes on and on of what you could do with 15 minutes of time devoted to getting more organized. 15 minutes isn’t exhausting or overwhelming. 15 minutes is a small blip of time, but when you do that enough times, the job will eventually be complete.
Want to get healthier? Instead of going on a huge diet and trying to go the gym for three hours a week, why not try easing your way into a lifestyle change by incorporating as many 15 minute activities as you can in a week. 15 minutes set aside for making a healthy food choice list, 15 mintues of food prep, 15 mintues of arm weights, a 15 minute walk, 15 minutes of stretching. When you have a larger window of time, try 15 minutes of activity, 15 minutes break, and then 15 minutes more exercise. You can work your 15 minute block any way that work for you.
To improve mind and spirit, use 15 minute blocks for meditation, reading, learning, affirmations, gratitude etc. What would 15 minutes of focused quality time playing a game with your kids feel like? 15 minutes of just sitting outside and being still. 15 minutes of deep breaths? What could you do if you woke up 15 minutes earlier each day?
Anything you do consistently for 15 minutes will eventually lead to healthier habits, and when good habits are formed you are less likely to return to old, unhealthy ways of doing things.
Look at your day from morning through night. Be intentional about booking 15 mintue time slots to work on whatever you want to work on. It’s hard to see the value of a single brick when you’re building a house, but every single brick set into place ensures that the dream house is one more step closer to completion.
Stop waiting for more time, or the perfect time; just start today with 15 minutes of focused attention on whatever you hope to achieve. Do this long enough, and you will soon find yourself reflecting on how far you’ve come while actually enjoying the ride you’ve been on.