How to change your habits like a Goddess
Have you considered that there could be a juicy way to make new habits and have them stick with ease?!
A goddessy way to create sustainable change and meet big goals without gross ideas of restriction, discipline, carrot/stick motivation, and willpower?
Frankly, I was done with all mainstream habit change ideas - they smacked of patriarchal dogma.
That is until my teacher introduced me to Celebration and Shine and the work of Stanford's BJ Fogg (an expert on behavior and long-term habit change). And this goddess-approved work is what I'll share so you can grow and thrive too!
This work centers on celebrating tiny habits, thereby freeing us from restrictive dogma and inviting the use of our intrinsic motivation system; our emotions.
Seriously, yes! Habit change can be delightful and loving.
Here's the quick neurobiological reason why this works: Our emotions & body sensations are more powerful triggers for behavior change than the mind. Think about it, if all it took for me to get up early in the morning was to think that I wanted to, then I would do so with no effort. However, this is not the case! Because my body hates getting up early, the thought fills me with dread, and therefore am unlikely to change this habit with ease.
Now ponder this: We want to do things that feel good. Our primal and limbic brains get on board with good feelings. We then make choices that align our lives in the direction of good feelings- cortex be damned! (This is one reason drug addiction is a challenge to heal.) If my body delighted in the experience of early rising, then there's a great chance I would do it*.
There's a spiritual truth to this as well: Good feelings, like compassion, love and joy, are qualities that create wholeness in ourselves and the world around us — making the world a better place for all.
Conversely, restriction, willpower, or discipline create separation and take massive energy to sustain, causing suffering.
What moves humanity toward peace is not rejection or restriction; it's compassion. That doesn't mean we reject the rejection! No, we have compassion for rejection. We make our wholeness a true wholeness, where all are welcome.
Back to Celebration and what this means for your life! Last year was hard for me: we had mold, I spent most of the summer crying on the floor at my dad's house, etc. It was a whole thing, and, on a macro scale, there didn't appear to be much worth celebrating. At least, not in the way we think of celebration. Let me preface by saying celebrating did not come easily to me:
As a recovering perfectionist, I couldn't see the point.
My "not-enoughness" didn't allow me to see success as anything but hitting the big goal, which is a moving target.
My false humility, conditioned by years of confusing spiritual teachings, had become a shield against the deep discomfort of being seen and taking up space.
If this is you, read on. This work is crucial for those who don't feel like we deserve to shine or celebrate, for those of us whose wins have been cut down by competitiveness or cut apart by negativity bias. Let me tell you, this is not going to get you where you want to go in life, and there is another way.**
Here's the deal about celebration. IT IS ALWAYS A GOOD TIME TO CELEBRATE!
In the dark times? That's ripe winter ground to plant seeds of habit that grow stronger with spring!
In the bright times? Celebrating calibrates the nervous system to that level of goodness and it is key to achieving the next level.
In the mediocre times? Often this is when we give up; doubling down on celebration gives us energy and hope.
In short, whatever you want more of in life, or are trying to achieve, celebrate every little win, every step of the way.
During those dark summer months, I dug deep and celebrated how I showed up for my coaching calls. When Gabe and I didn't dissolve into a fight over the stress of our lives, we celebrated how we held ourselves. I celebrated the pain of healing and growth. Now, these habits are solid, and I am onto the next.
How to Celebrate + What does Shine feel like? If you're wondering how to "celebrate" if it doesn't involve a motivation like champagne, good, this is the right question!
Celebration is the little thing you do that fills you with the feeling of YAY! Do you toss a tissue in the basket and throw your arms up when you make it first try? That's the feeling. Do you land a new client and do a little dance? That's it too! Shine is the feeling in your body; celebration is the action.
For clarity, I've made a short video on this. The "Shine" is palpable. Witness me celebrating my mediocre day (and more 😉)
With this in mind, I invite you to share three celebrations with me! Email me with the responses to these questions:
What's a bigger goal you're working on?
What's one tiny win you're celebrating?
Fogg says, "Emotions create change," what does that feel like in your body?
There's real magic in being witnessed in your "Shine" by someone who wants only the best for you as it heals the primal/limbic brain by sending the message that it is safe to be seen. I would be so honored to witness your celebrations.
With so much love and celebration! x nuria *Just so we are clear, this was simply an example. I am Taurus, and getting up early is not a habit I plan to change! **I help folks with these patterns often. Email me for free support.