Make Focus, Follow Through, and Discipline Your Friends!
By Dr. Michelle Kmiec, Founder OHH
Maintaining focus and follow through are necessary to ensure that you’re staying on your life path and that you aren’t allowing life’s distractions to lead you too far off your course. This is something that you must keep in mind at all times.
Of course, life is not going to flow perfectly day after day, and there will be constant obstacles and challenges for you to overcome. However, this is actually a wonderful thing! It allows you room to grow, and growth comes only when you are challenged.
The difference between you before you began your quest of rediscovering your authentic self, and you at present, is that now you have more awareness of who you really are and why you think and feel the way you do. You are aware of old pitfalls and unproductive life choices and you are able to recognize when you are veering away from your path and are now able to steer yourself back onto the course that gives you the most life and energy.
Now that your desire is to live more authentically, it is vital that you pay attention to your focal points as you move in a positive direction. The way in which you follow through using the tools you’ve learned from articles and Podcasts such as Are Your Assumptions Making You Sick? , How Your Perceptions, Expectations, and Judgments Directly Affect Your Health! , and Rediscover Your Authentic Self To Feel Alive! (to name a few) will mean the difference between 100% success and reverting back to old unhealthy patterns.
But there is something we haven’t talked much about. The one crucial element that is of great benefit if you make it your closest companion. Do you know what I am talking about? Here’s a hint. It’s something we all know that we must incorporate into our daily lives, but find extremely difficult to maintain. Yet when we can uphold it, it brings organization and clarity to life, as well as a sense of serenity in everything we do. Have you figured it out yet?
When we incorporate discipline into our lives anything becomes attainable. We can achieve all our goals whether career or personal, as well as achieve and maintain an optimal state of health and overall sense of well-being. Almost everything in life requires discipline, even the simple act of meditating every day.
To the surprise of many, even the things we enjoy doing require discipline. However, we may not recognize this because we don’t usually consider that discipline plays a role even in activities that we consider fun.
Discipline can even turn activities that once were a chore into ones that you look forward to! For example, when working toward improving your health, you may not be excited at first about making healthy food choices, beginning a new exercise routine, or beginning a meditation practice. But as you remain consistent and disciplined you will realize your daily achievements and start to enjoy them! This is the key to maintaining focus and ensuring follow through.
Athletes, for example, look forward to the feeling derived from an intense workout and recognize that the energies exerted will push them closer to their goals.
This was true for me when I was sick. When I recognized that I needed to make some major life changes, it also became apparent that in order to maintain a state of optimal health, I would need to incorporate tools to ensure that I would never revert back to a disease state. Although it has been many years since I experienced symptoms of the neurological autoimmune condition I was diagnosed with, MS, the same reality remains true today.
When life hits me hard with a curveball, it would be easy to just throw my arms up in the air and give up. However, doing so would mean that I allowed that curveball to disrupt not just one aspect of my life, but also the entirety of my life! This is unacceptable, being that any curveball that life throws at you is always of a temporary nature.
Even when we lose someone close to our heart, whether it’s the end of a relationship or even death, it feels as though your heart will always be broken. I promise though, this is also a temporary feeling.
Like many people, I have experienced loss and understand the grief attached to it. There’s just no sugar-coating it, it’s extremely difficult and the pain can be intense. But there are two things you can always count on:
- The pain is temporary.
- You are never alone.
We all experience pain at some point in our life, and during these times it is extremely important that you continue to maintain a certain level of focus and discipline.
But just as we experience dark periods in our life, we also experience amazing ones! The ability to navigate between them is the key to a balanced and enriched life!
Choosing Focus, Follow Through, and Discipline For Optimal Health
To improve in any area of health, whether physical, nutritional or emotional, consistency is key. And for the sake of simplicity, let’s use something physical as an example.
When it comes to physical fitness we are talking about consistency of practice (discipline) in order to build endurance and confidence. It’s important to focus on an activity or exercise that excites you, something that you love to do, something that you not only enjoy but also find engaging and stimulating as well. For obvious reasons, this will help with follow through.
For me, hands down, that exercise is dancing! Though when I first started dancing as a fitness exercise, it didn’t come as easily as many might believe. Many of the movements challenged me athletically and required a great deal of practice to perfect. But I loved dancing so much that I wanted to “get it”, and not give up just because it was difficult at first.
So what did I do?
I began looking at some of my daily activities as an opportunity to practice various dance moves. Hip rolls became my tooth brushing companion, and washing dishes became an exercise of rhythmic krumping. As the saying goes, “If there is a will, there is a way.” And I was determined to master the art of the dance workout!
After a while, all of that extra practice and focus paid off. Not to mention all the practice was so much fun! Haha! Especially for those watching me throughout the entire process!
Not only did I enjoy my new dance workout and all of the newly learned moves, but soon after I began teaching them to others in group fitness classes and to this day I find extreme joy in this activity! Thank goodness I didn’t give up!!
Remember, it’s your body and your health, so why not make it fun to maintain by indulging in some creative play when practicing your favorite exercise moves!
Now it’s time for you to pick a new physical activity, something totally different than what you are doing now and see what can happen with extra practice and focus.
Pick a specific skill within one of your favorite physical activities that you would like to improve.
Let me give you some of my examples that I have used throughout the years to help give you some ideas:
- The hip roll in your Zumba class
- The kipping pull-up in your Crossfit class
- The hill on your jogging path
- The martial arts form in your karate class
- The hook punch in your kickboxing class
- The headstand in your yoga class
- Your endurance when walking a mile
- Your overall strength when climbing the stairs
For at least the next 30 days, focus your attention, both visually and physically, on the particular skill that you’d like to significantly improve.
Ask for help if necessary, perhaps friends, family members or instructors at your favorite gym for support and encouragement.
Practice, practice, practice and allow yourself the time to feel the movements, to feel the improvement and most of all…enjoy the journey! In other words, no frustration allowed!
Here are some questions to consider as you begin:
- What are some creative ways that you can practice your skill outside of the arena of your chosen activity?
- Which stretches and strength building exercises can you do to help you meet your goals?
- Who can help you in your quest to master this skill?
I guarantee you that if you apply those action words:
- Follow Through
…you will achieve your goal whatever it is!