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Have You Done Your Homework?

I’d like to introduce Maryann Bastnagel as the newest member of the H3 Team! Maryann has joined H3 as a H3@Home wellness coach. Check out her first post on H3Daily and look for many more to come! Learn more about Maryann here.

Homework – ugh.  Just when you thought that membership in the adult world meant that those long evenings of calculus problems and verb conjugations were over, along comes homework as part of your coaching engagement!  By homework, we are talking about those assignments that one takes on “after work” that expands personal development, shifting knowledge, behavior, mood, and/or action in support of achieving defined goals.  Examples of your homework might include:

  • Maintaining an exercise commitment – e.g., walking for 1 mile after dinner
  • Building emotional intelligence – e.g., listening to a TED Talks lecture by a thought leader
  • Practicing limit setting – e.g., eating only a ½ cup of frozen yogurt for dessert
  • Exploring new fitness outlets  – e.g., taking a Zumba class

Reasonable excuses abound for neglecting one’s homework – no time, low energy, other priorities.  Can homework get easier?   The answer, of course, is “yes”, and not surprisingly, some guidance finds its origins in traditional, education-based, homework rules.

  • It’s not about a grade. The measure of homework “success” can be found in what it generates in us, not in what we generate to share with others. Remember – the only “A” that counts is the one you give yourself.
  • Cramming doesn’t work. Real change takes time.  Whether remembering to include more fruits and veggies into our daily diet or losing the last 10 pounds, the key to lasting change is consistency of our behavior. 
  • Busy work is no substitute for real work. It’s natural to feel good when things get done – whether it’s surfing the web for new running shoes or organizing our work out clothes by color.  However, these time-consuming activities may get in the way of what really matters, such as heading out the door for a brisk walk or run.
  • The backpack does indeed get lighter. The more we regularly and consistently complete our homework, the greater chance of developing that “muscle memory” that helps us lighten the load and reach our goals.

So the next time your coach gives you homework, think about all of the good things that will come from it – and be thankful that those days of calculus drills are behind you!


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