“Was tomorrow when we were going to do the TRX class?” I texted.
We had discussed going to the 5 am class two or three weekly earlier, but it seemed promising that we hadn’t discussed it since then. Because now, I didn’t want to go anymore and I was hoping that she forgot.
But, she hadn’t forgotten and we were still going. I went to bed earlier than usual and reluctantly set my alarm for 4 am the next day.
My alarm sounded and my body protested. It didn’t want to get out of bed, let alone go to an exercise class. Yet before I knew it, the class was over and I was walking to my car with my entire day ahead of me. I felt accomplished and had more energy than any other day that week.
The experience gave me insight into two of the most powerful things we can do to make sure we stick to our choices.
If the Thursday before was the first time we had discussed getting up for a 5 am class, there is very little chance that we would have goneT. Our past selves had been firmly committed to the class, which made it that much harder to skip. It is like waiting to think about dinner until you are already starved. You’re much less likely to make an informed decision when your stomach is growling.
By Thursday, I was tired and had a lot of other things I could have decided to do instead. Planning ahead takes out the emotion. We can make the decision before we are influenced by day to day tasks or how tired/unmotivated we feel.
I doubt I would have gone to the class if I wasn’t planning on going with a friend. I had skipped the two Friday mornings prior, but this time my actions would affect someone else. I didn’t want my flakiness to discourage her from going to the class. I knew I had to hold up my end.
Accountability to someone or something else is one of the greatest ways to stick to our choices. We feel an innate need to show up for those close to us. If we involve the accountability of others, we are more likely to follow through when excuses and emotions get the best of us.
If there is a habit you want to form or something you want to follow through with, decide early and find someone or something to hold you accountable [or post it :)] .