Healthy Options 9.9.21

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Decisive moments and the two-minute rule

I have come to realise that I start each day with a ritual.  The alarm goes off at 6am and I immediately get up and put on my cycling kit. This has become an automatic choice or habit which has a huge influence on what follows, and in many cases dictates whether I have a good or bad day.

Most days the act of getting up immediately and putting on my cycle kit leads to a cycle ride, return home for a shower, and pick up a healthy breakfast before cycling to the ferry and travel across to Oban.  The outcome that I perceive as a great start to the day is the cycle ride and a feeling that I have got my training in nice and early before I go to work.

However, the decisive moment is the wake up and immediate donning of the cycle kit.  We all face decisive moments during our day when a specific choice can deliver an outsized impact.  This impact can be positive or destructive and strongly influence what happens for minutes or hours to come.  It’s easier to just continue with whatever you are doing which is why we keep watching a rubbish film and perhaps keep snacking even though we’re full.

This fact can be used to our advantage when starting a new health kick by implementing the two-minute rule.  This may appear over simplistic but by starting with just the first two minutes of your new habit we make the habit much easier to develop.

If you hope to start attending the gym regularly but are concerned about your ability to keep it up, start by making a two-minute visit on a regular basis and master the art of ‘turning up’. This is much easier than trying to start with a one-hour session and once you start doing the right thing it’s easier to keep going and start lengthening your sessions at a comfortable pace.

By mastering the art of turning up you are basically casting votes for your new identity and becoming the sort of person who doesn’t miss a workout.  It goes without saying, the sort of person who doesn’t miss workouts is setting a stable foundation for significant improvements to their health and wellbeing.

For the full message go to the free resource section on our website and click on Decisive moments and the two-minute rule.

Emma Grant, project manager and fundraiser, Healthy Options.