Committing to Your (future) Self

Photo by  rawpixel  on  Unsplash

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

For years it has been my intention to write regular blog posts. But I've always had more excuses or reasons why "I'll start next week instead," than motivation to do it. I tried to start a few years ago when a colleague of mine was in the midst of her own goal to write a blog post every week for a full year. I thought that sounded great, until reality hit me.

Commit to 52 blog posts? Be held publicly accountable for that goal? No way. Too scary! I can't do it, I don't have that much to say!

By now, if I had set that goal and accomplished it, I'd have that sense of achieving something that feels too big to take on. I've always connected with No Meat Athlete Matt Frazier's belief that a goal needs to be big enough to feel unrealistic in order to really inspire and provide the endurance needed to achieve it.

So I'm committing now to writing a blog post per week for the next year. Eek!.. And yay!

Another approach that has been really helpful lately came from a friend:

What does future me need present me to do in order to make her life easier? I ask myself this whenever I recognize I'm putting off something I know is good for me to do. My 38 year old self wants my 36 year old self to commit to a weekly blog posting now, the same as current me wishes past me had already.

Whenever you find yourself thinking, "I'll do it tomorrow or next week," ask yourself how that affects "future you." I love this idea because it applies both to big goals and sticking to new daily habits. 

For example: How does skipping your daily physical therapy exercises affect you next month or 6 months from now when you've made little or no progress? Sure today you get to use that 20 minutes for something else, but is that really what future you needs?

Try this exercise: picture yourself in the future, maybe just 6 months or perhaps a few years out. How does your future body feel? Are you still having the same chronic pains or have they been healed because of the self-care you started doing now? Are you still feeling stuck in the same ways or are you thriving because of decisions you made now?

Go ahead, try it: Close your eyes, take a few centering breaths and connect with your future self. 

After spending some time thinking about it, hopefully you will have at least one answer to this question: What does your future self need you to do right now in order to make their life better?