5 MINUTE READ: The SELF-CARE way to beating your c**ppy habits!
I love wine. Many of you will know that. But before becoming a single Mum and certainly when I was pregnant last year, I did not drink wine in the week. So the week day wine drinking I have been doing (for years) is what I call a C**P HABIT!
C**ppy habits are things like daily evening wine drinking, morning willy nilly lattes, the 4pm chocolate snacking, hitting snooze instead of exercising, spending hours on social media and I believe they are the exact opposite of self-care. Of course doing these things some of the time, are absolutely fine, in fact I whole heartedly recommend that! But there is a big difference between occasionally and consistently.
But I believe that there are millions of women around the world who are so close to their goals, yet SO far… Just because of their little cr**py habits.
Habits are something we learn, we get used to and we go auto-pilot on after time. But with some awareness, the right approach and a little dedication, they can be unlearnt, changed, replaced and even forgotten over time. So it is in fact good news!
When I became a single Mum to my twins in 2009 when they were 13 months old and went through a messy divorce, I used wine to help me cope with a huge, unexpected life change. Wine became an emotional prop and something I essentially taught myself that I ‘needed’ to have in the evenings to get through my crazy days. Everyone has their own drug of choice in situations like this, yours might be chocolate or biscuits or carbohydrates or over eating in general, for me, it’s wine! But this emotional drink choice, over time, became a habit- something I did, just because, without even thinking about it… and I got used to it. I focused on the escapism it gave me, rather than what it might be doing to my body and in some ways deliberately carried on doing it because I liked the way it made me feel. A health scare in 2010, forced me to address this habitual ‘need/treat/reward’ and over time I learnt to reduce my wine intake. I created a Wine Management program as a result and helped women manage their wine, not the wine them.
But since having my daughter last year, and being a single working Mum of 3 children and adjusting to having a baby (and not taking any real maternity leave as I was back working when she was four days old!), after I stopped breast feeding the wine started creeping back in. The struggles I was experiencing became triggers and then my subconscious was literally telling me ‘ wine will help… you need wine!’. (And actually the wine, most definitely helped on many occasions!). But as I adjusted to being a single Mum of 3 and got used to the broken sleep and the work-life-kids juggle became easier, my week day wine drinking had become what I call a ‘C**P habit’.
Before Christmas, I had a few weeks where I didn’t drink and many of my clients followed too, soooo many of them felt amazing and more and more women I knew were moving away from these unnecessary wine habits and feeling amazing as a result. In the new year, the wine was creeping back in again, starting with one glass every night, which then became two and occasionally three or four on a bad day. But in February, I had a bit if epiphany. I was starting to think about turning 40 in April, what I wanted for myself over the next decade (and also my impending holiday to Jamaica and bikini!) and I decided that you know what, enough was enough. I read a book called ‘Unf**k your habitat’ – all about organizing your home better and keeping on top of a tidy / clean home, and the strap line was ‘ You’re better than your mess’.
BOOM! This strapline hit me so hard and I thought about my cr***y wine habit and thought ‘Janey, you’re better than your c***y wine habit!’. With a huge work project on, thinking about my bikini I want to look fit and strong in next month, a big move for me on the cards and really wanting a clear, confident head in my business, that was it.
But it was in a different way, and with a different approach, using different motivational and mindset strategies than I had done before. And when I shared these with my current 28 day online bootcampers and BEST clients, they loved it. So I’m sharing with you now via this blog now in the hope it inspires more women to beat their cr***y wine habits (or any other habits they might have too!).
- I started to think seriously about becoming a non-week day wine drinker – (just how I used to be all those years ago before becoming a single parent!) and really thought about what that would look like. I started to think about stepping into the identity of someone who doesn’t drink wine in the week. Just as a smoker has to take the identity of being a non-smoker. And of course stepping away from the identity of someone that drinks wine in the week. I considered what my week would look like as a non-week day wine drinker, what I would do instead in the evenings and most importantly, what I would gain from this over what I would lose.
- I asked myself the ultimate SELF-CARE bootcamp question – ‘Is what you’re doing taking you towards a place of success and self-care or pulling it away from you?’ This really has been a big game changer for me because when you have a cr**py habit, it cannot be an act of self-care. As I said above, sometimes drinking wine, eating chocolate, whatever your habit is can 100% be an act of self-care but not if done so often AND as an emotional prop to something that is causing you stress / upset / struggle. The habit you’ve formed actually makes a bad situation worse and keeps you stuck there. So I had a good honest chat with myself and took the cr**py wine habit from under the carpet and faced up to it!
- I considered what I wanted for myself for the next decade – Milestone birthdays can be great for being reflective. My thirties have been great in many ways, I’ve had three amazing children, travelled to some great places, retrained and created a new business, helped thousands of women and lots more. But I had twins, got out of a toxic marriage, went through a stressful divorce, the recession kicked in and my business nearly went under and having been a single parent to my twins for eight years this October, and having my daughter by myself last year, you can imagine the relentless daily grind that goes with that. But all this is character building, has made me stronger and I’ve come out the other side with no regrets with a smile on my face. But my forties are about me and success. They are about self-care, ease, style and grace. And I’ve been setting the intention for someone who’s ready to receive some really great things coming her way! I started to think about what does the ‘Janey who wants a great decade do on a daily basis’ and I realized that a cr***y wine was not part of it. Nice wine, some of the time, OF COURSE! But in a different, more positive way. Also as per point two, if you’re using a habit to cope with something, you’re not changing the something. Then you’re staying stuck and I believe you’re attracting staying stuck. So Janey in her thirties struggled a bit but Janey in her forties won’t! (More of stepping into that new identity again, right?). I also asked myself where I’d be turning 50 if I carried on will my cr**py habit. And that was a strong pull towards creating long lasting changes.
- I made a decision. My decision was that from now on, I was not going to drink wine in the week Sunday to Thursday and would allow myself to drink a couple of glasses on Thursday evenings (if I wanted it) as I don’t work Fridays and a couple of glasses at the weekend (if I wanted it). This would be in the 6 to 7 week blocks I work term time, giving myself permission to drink a little more in the holidays if I was more social – NOT just to drink at home just because.
- I changed the language I was using – around my c***y habit. How many of you use the word ‘my wine’ or ‘my coffee’ when you talk about a habit involving something that you love? I mentioned this when teaching a bootcamp at Fit for a Princess a few weeks ago and SO many of them resonated with this! ‘MY…’ something, implies you own it, or are obsessed with it. I stopped referring to ‘my wine’ and I stopped using the language that I had previously like ‘ manage my wine’ and avoid words like ‘shouldn’t have drunk that’ , ‘must cut back’ type stuff. Also (and this is actually very important), I stopped talking about wine! And started talking more of the success, clarity, new me, the gains, the benefits, the new habits, anything but the damn wine! And trust me this really helps when wanting to break a habit.
- I set to it but was flexible – I initially said I wouldn’t drink for 6 weeks. But after 3 weeks of not drinking, I felt like the cr**py habit was completely broken. I was enjoying not being a week day wine drinker. But I still liked the idea of having the odd glass so I allowed myself to have a couple of glasses on a Thursday night. And the same if I wanted to, a couple of glasses on a Saturday lunch / evening. I did that in week four and in week five, only had one glass on the Thursday night and nothing on the Saturday (and it was even my daughter’s birthday – a previous ‘must-drink’ social event). I had cups of tea instead and actually it was way more enjoyable as a result. I’m now in week six and the thought of drinking daily wine is so far removed from where I am, it’s frightening how easy it’s been and how different I am in such a short space of time.
- I started it on a Thursday – I ‘gave up’ or actually language I prefer to use is ‘set to’ my cr**py habit on a Thursday, rather than a Monday. I locked in to a booze-free weekend, kept myself busy so by Monday I was already feeling the rewards of not having any booze. I always think Monday is the worse day to adjust any habits or reset yourself and I do believe doing this made the outset so much easier for me. I also at the same time upped my training massively, so was focusing on strength. Whist this was physical strength, getting into the ‘strong not weak’ mentality was very empowering. I saw the choices I was making as empowering, not about will power. And the immediate changes to my body has a result spurred me on no end.
- I realized there was in fact some unconscious dis-connect / dis-ease in my life – In February I made the decision to move from Kent to Devon. I’m moving there at the end of May to a beautiful place by the sea (Sidmouth)with my children and have found a lovely house a few minutes walk from the seafront. I’ve got my twins into a great school and absolutely love the town. As I spent a week there for half term and felt truly at home, authentically happy, with a real spring in my step, I came to the conclusion that whilst I’ve had some lovely times in Kent in the last 5 years, I’ve never been truly, deeply happy there. Sometimes, with the perspective of hindsight you can look back and see that whilst you can use a positive mindset to make the most out of any situation, sometimes you aren’t really at ease with where you are. What are you tolerating in your life that with a little nudge or plot twist could create something completely different for yourself – something absolutely wonderful that sits really well in your soul – AND reduces the need for those cr**py habits?!. Is it a move, a different job, getting out of a relationship etc?
My new SELF-CARE bootcamp is about helping women achieve great body and mind results with a nourishing not punishing approach. As well as seven hours of online fitness videos with five great trainers and a wholesome nutrition plan, it also includes lots of tips, strategies, webinars and resources around emotional eating, self-sabotage, habits, consistency and guilt. And of course, it helps women move away from a place of self-destruct towards a place of self-care.
Ladies, you’re better than your c**p!
So if you struggle with this, come and let me help you and be part of the SELF-CARE revolution!
We start on 24th April and there are still a few earlybird places left. Come and join us and leave your cr***y habits behind you and get the easiest results you’ve ever achieved in your whole life!
BOOK YOUR PLACE HERE!