Note: This is a guest post by my long-time friend, Diane Fennig. I trust you will enjoy Diane’s perspective; I know I do. Resolutions are just as important in March as they are in January.
It's January 15th, how are you doing with your New Year’s Resolutions? I recently read that the busiest day at the gym is January 8th, and I wondered how that pattern has survived? Are we that predictable? I follow the reading lists of Adam Grant, Wharton professor, author of Give and Take, and also a Real Rock Star and was pleased to see the beloved author in Gretchen Rubin on his Top 15 List for 2015with her latest book, Better Than Before – Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives. I have been following Gretchen since her initial work highlighting The Happiness Project.
Gretchen shared a video clip about The Lightning Bolt (I originally misnamed it the Thunder Bolt and she got a laugh out of this….) This theory really struck a chord with me, as I have changed some habits based on a Lightning Bolt that “scared me into” new and better patterns over the past 30 months. I have been amazed at the power of this jolt to change my eating and my interest in exercise. Gretchen goes on to explain,
“Discussions of habit-change often emphasize the importance of repeating an action, over and over, until it becomes automatic, and such repetition does indeed help to form habits. However, it’s also true that sometimes we’re hit by a lightning bolt that transforms our habits. We encounter some new idea, and suddenly a new habit replaces a longstanding habit. The Strategy of the Lightning Bolt takes its power from knowledge, beliefs, and ideas.”
The Lightning Bolt is a highly effective strategy, but unfortunately, it’s rare, and practically impossible to invoke on command. Which can be frustrating, because it often makes change so easy.”
One of my dear friends told me that I made this new lifestyle of eating healthy and maintaining my exercise look too easy. I do know the why, but I can confirm the power of this jolt. My body wants to get up and walk each and every morning and I am still a "foodie" who now craves fruits, nuts, seeds and greens.
I wish you a Lightning Bolt in 2015! I must confess, I would like to create a few more in my life too!
Diane Fennig serves as a Senior Consultant with The Human Capital Group, an executive search and leadership consulting firm based in Brentwood, TN.