Have you ever made a resolution – new year’s or otherwise – that you kept for a long period of time? Even better, one that you thought could be a permanent change?
For me, there has been one this year and it’s been health related: giving up caffeine.
I set out at the beginning of the year to give up caffeine, and eliminate any caffeinated drinks from my diet. These drinks were primarily diet sodas, but sometimes coffee or tea. I just didn’t feel right, and thought that cutting out caffeine could help out.
What happened? Well, I stopped drinking caffeine entirely this year. Stopped cold turkey, in fact. No sodas, and only decaf coffee on occasion (with tiny amounts of caffeine technically, but essentially caffeine free).
The health benefits were noticeable. I just felt better overall, as there were less ups and downs in energy levels throughout the day. Given my caffeine consumption before, this change was noticeable. Plus, I slept better through the night without any caffeine in my bloodstream. In short, my giving up caffeine had been a real success.
Just today, I broke the streak. After just over 5 months without any caffeine, I broke down and had a large, 32oz diet soda today.
Here’s my rationalization of the breaking point: I have had a couple of nights of poor sleep due to allergies/sinus issues that flared up, and I am exhausted. Plus, I was solo taking care of one of my kiddos earlier. I needed to be alert and plus I was in the car really thirsty on a hot day. Being tired, I just didn’t have the willpower – so I caved and decided to swing by a drive-thru and pick up a Diet Coke.
Certainly, this is no big deal in the big picutre. I mean, plenty of poeple guzzle tons of coffee or sodas daily as a part of their normal lives….I was one of those people, and it’s unfortunately quite not uncommon I think! However, I did set a goal for myself and after 100% success for this year I just now caved. This streak is over, and that’s what’s on my mind here….as I’m now a bit wired and feeling much more alert than earlier
Anyway, it got me thinking that sometimes we make missteps in our lives, whether small health/diet ones like this, or bigger ones. This can include the realm of personal finance, where people may blow their budget for a month, splurge on something, or carry a credit card balance after committing to not do so. Whatever the case, we’re human and don’t always follow our plans exactly to the letter.
However, many such mistakes are correctable. We can work to recongnize the mistake, diagnose what caused the slip up, and determine what we can do to move past it. And then, just move forward and learn from the experience. Whether it’s a small thing like this or a bigger issue, sometimes you just learn from a slip up and move ahead.
My Question for You:
When have you ever “fallen off the wagon”, so to speak, only to get back on track with a goal or behavior you’ve set out to make habit? Any example can be shared.
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