My Manifesto

These are my intentions, beliefs and motives. This is not an all-encompassing list. It is an evolving document. It helps focus me and define my actions. (I’ve given some asides throughout to help you understand what I avow.)

  1. Every day is a gift to be savored. With gratitude, I will make the most of each day I am given. I will make today a good day.
  2. Change is only going to stick if it actually works for me. (I like and need to eat red meat occasionally so a vegetarian lifestyle isn’t for me, but if that is what works for you and you’re able to stay with it, great for you.)
  3. Consistency is vital, valuable and virtuous. If I can demonstrate healthy and happy behaviors most of the moments of most days, then I should be healthy and happy in total.
  4. I am me. I look like me. I think like me. I have my talents. I have my abilities. I have my challenges. I have my circumstances. I have my opportunities. You are you. No matter what I do, think or want, I will always be me. I’m celebrating my me-ness. I am enough. Celebrate your you-ness.
  5. It’s OK to not know, to say no, to ask for help, to stumble.
  6. It is NOT OK to not try, to talk unkindly to or about myself, to limit myself. (There are enough people in this world who will do all of these things “for” me so I’m not going to be one of them!)
  7. Working on myself to replace bad behaviors and crock talk with sound habits and positive thoughts is the foundation of my healthy lifestyle. I will not let access, cost, time or others be an excuse to not be healthy and happy. (There are many different paths to healthy. Some are more defined than others. You do not have to go gluten-free, carb-free, meat-free, dairy-free or whatever to be healthy. You just need to take the next better step for you.)
  8. I am not perfect. I mess up. I make bad choices sometimes. I will learn from these opportunities. I will apologize when warranted and then move on. No dwelling. No poor me. No victim mentality. I am owning my shit. (Own your shit.)
  9. Ask: How important is it? Then listen for the real answer, the gut-instinct answer.
  10. Don’t wait for an invitation. Initiate. (I suck at this even though I try not to!)
  11. If I’m going to indulge in something…a brownie, an extra day off from the gym, whatever, I am going to enjoy it fully and not feel badly about it. (What’s the sense of treating yourself if you only end up beating yourself up about it? Seriously. That’s ridiculous and rather masochistic.)
  12. When in doubt, play your favorite songs. Loudly.
  13. With change, things often have to get messy, uncomfortable or difficult before they get better. Don’t let the muck, pinch or stress be an excuse.
  14. Nobody knows if I don’t say something. People cannot read my mind.
  15. Wanting something and working to achieve something are not the same thing.
  16. There IS an undeniable mind-body connection. If my thoughts are crap, my body will feel like crap. Talk kindly to yourself. Use the power of your thoughts to encourage your body to achieve the physical goals you set.
  17. Adopting healthier behaviors is about 90% mental. If you keep your mind focused, you’ll stay out of your own way and the change will happen.
  18. Attitude is absolutely everything. In life. In the workplace. At home. At the gym. When you look in the mirror. Always. Everything. (In the words of my Dad: “Don’t let the bastards get you down.” …And don’t be a bastard to yourself either. I rock. You rock. Enough said.)
  19. Excuses are not reasons.
  20. Forgive more than you don’t. (Grudges eat at you. They have virtually no impact on whomever you’re pissed at. Life is short. Forgive…then move on.)

What would your manifesto say? Send me your top five!