A few years ago I participated in a mentorship program with one of the world’s experts on leadership, John C. Maxwell.
I learned a valuable technique from John for making progress toward my goals and enhancing my sense of purpose.
John taught us that every time you have a learning experience or reach a benchmark toward a goal, you should “ACT,” in other words…
- Determine how to APPLY what you’ve learned to your daily lifestyle.
- Decide what behaviors need to CHANGE to make progress toward goals.
- Make a positive impact on others around you by TEACHing what you’ve learned.
Based on John’s advice, I’ve got in the habit of writing the letters “A,” “C” and “T” in the margins of notes when I attend a lecture and using this technique at the end of a month or quarter to evaluate my progress toward my goals.
Many of us embark on the new year with the goal of improving our health habits. The holiday season inevitably can have a negative impact on our eating, exercise and sleep resulting in added stress and weight gain. Come January 1, we all make goals to change for the better. Typically our circumstances provide a better opportunity to do so too with fewer social obligations, no more end-of-year deadlines, and the holiday cookies and fruit cake disappearing from our view.
February 1st is almost here, so how are you doing with your healthier habits? If you’re coming to the end of this month already feeling like bad habits are creeping back in, take a break now and apply John’s technique. It will help you from taking one step forward and two steps back with your health and wellness goals…or any goal.
Here’s what I’m ACTing on:
A better sleep technique I learned from a family member: Turn off all electronics at least 2 hours before heading to bed.
The winter months are emotionally tough months for me. Being busy at work can keep my mind from slipping into depression, but I’m also making a plan at the beginning of each week to include activities that fuel my sense of purpose.
This simple act of avoiding stores drugstores that have sweets near the register and at the end of aisles has helped keep me from bringing sugar into the house.
Print a month-at-a-glance calendar at the beginning of every month and plan out your exercise activities – what you will do and what hour of the day you will do it – one week in advance. Draw an “X” through the day when you’ve completed your workout. This fuels your energy to keep going because you can see your progress. My goal is to see at least 20-22 “Xs” at the end of every month.