I started my new job yesterday. It was exciting but like any other first day, it started slow. But even in my first day, I did things I’ve never done before! Like…attending a casting call for a video my new company is producing. Almost the first thing we did when we got to the agency was order lunch. I was presented with a giant menu. And I could order anything! (I could get used to this!).
As I skimmed the menu, my eyes were drawn to the baked mac and cheese and the buffalo chicken wrap – two of my all time favorite foods. I had decided on the buffalo chicken wrap before changing my mind in the eleventh hour and ordering a salad when one of the assistants came to take our order. When the food came, I was happy with my last-minute change. The kale, quinoa and brussels sprout salad with chicken was delicious, and it was all around a healthier decision than either of the two options I had previously considered.
When I got home last night, I went for a run. 3.24 miles along the river. And aside from stopping at crosswalks, I didn’t stop to walk once! I felt inspired to do my best… because of the smart decision I had made earlier in the day for lunch.
It got me thinking about the impact that a positive choice can have going forward. With each positive choice we make, we build momentum and each decision influences the next one, and the one after that, and so on. It’s like a decision domino effect.
I think it’s actually easier to see this domino effect with poor decisions. Take food as an example. For me, when I eat something not so great, like fast food burritos, I’m much more prone to choose another fast food choice later on, like pizza, and then a fast food burger. And fries (I may or may not be referencing my life last weekend). But it also applies to getting a good nights sleep, exercising, and basically anything else. After all, repetition is how habits are formed.
So how do we take advantage of this power and keep up the momentum for good things?
1. Remember that you have a choice.
A few weeks ago I reverted back to what I used to do in college: I drank whatever everyone around me was drinking (everything), and I ate whatever they were eating too (burritos, pizza, wings). By the end of the weekend I had a stomach ache and was very dehydrated. I felt awful!
That Monday, I told myself I would never do that again. Yes, I was out with friends being social, but that didn’t mean I had to do everything they were doing or make food and drink choices that weren’t good for me.
2. Be okay with the choice you’re making.
You’re more than welcome to make whatever choice you want – in the end it’s your decision. But make sure you’re good with whatever it is you choose #NORAGRETS. The weekend I was reliving college, I was cool with everything… until I felt sick and suddenly wasn’t. If you know you’re going to regret it the next day, or even the next second – don’t do it!
3. Stay inspired.
Every choice is as inpiring as your make it. By being aware of the good choice you made earlier, you’re choosing to build that momentum with another good choice – becasuse you feel good. If you’re on a roll, keep going. And if you slip up, that’s okay too… just get back to it with a positive choice!