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  • Writer's pictureJackie

50 Potential Reasons To Be Proud Today

—In the Spirit of Fitness—

When’s the last time you said, “Wow, I’m really proud of myself for [fill in the blank]?” If you’re like most people, it’s been a while. And in one way, there’s a biological reason for this. The human brain has evolved to scan for the negative in daily life. Because survival has always depended on the ability to anticipate risk and danger, we now don’t even realize our brains do this perpetually. Despite immediate risks (like wild predators) diminishing as eons have passed, our brains have stayed on “auto scan.” As a result, we’re naturally much more inclined to latch onto negative thoughts and perceptions than positive ones.

While this tendency toward hyper vigilance can keep us safe—eg, “Was that guy just weaving across lanes on this freeway? Ah, hell no!”—it also makes our “down time” pretty unpleasant. There’s good news, though. We can somewhat condition our brains to focus more on good stuff. Gratitude for all kinds of things, big & small, for example, lifts the spirit beautifully.

Today, I’m going to suggest a strategy that serves double duty in terms of physical & spiritual health: TAKE PRIDE. When we pat ourselves on the back, it not only lifts our mood in the moment, but it also helps to cement future behavior. Health coaches call this “self efficacy,” a shift in outlook & confidence, a belief that you CAN achieve your goals. This belief leads you to repeat the great things you’re doing, which leads to more self-assurance, and so a positive loop propels you forward.

We don’t have to move mountains to celebrate ourselves. Small actions add up. Here are 50 moments in a day when you can authentically feel proud of yourself:

1. You started your day early to focus on your wellbeing.

2. You said thank you for another day.

3. You worked out.

4. You breathed a prayer for someone.

5. You ate breakfast.

6. You drank a few glasses of water.

7. You stretched or did yoga.

8. You cheered someone else on as they worked out.

9. You slept 7-8 hours.

10. You asked someone for support.

11. You put together a meal plan for the week...

12. And did the grocery shopping.

13. You meditated for a minute, or two, or 30.

14. You ate 3-4 different fruits...

15. And 3-4 different veggies.

16. You stopped yourself from judging yourself.

17. You said something positive about yourself.

18. You stopped yourself from judging someone else.

19. You said something nice about someone else.

20. You went for a walk when you wanted to watch more TV.

21. You set a healthy example for your family.

22. You talked them into doing something active.

23. You didn’t skip your strength training this week.

24. You ate less sugar than you normally might.

25. You packed snacks so you could avoid the vending machine at work.

26. You even chopped up veggies to munch on during the week.

27. You took the stairs instead of an elevator.

28. You soaked in a few minutes of sunshine to boost vitamin D.

29. You rested when your body felt fatigued.

30. You pushed a workout harder when you knew you had it in you.

31. You ate three balanced meals.

32. You smiled at someone.

33. You smiled at your reflection.

34. You tried a new workout or signed up for an athletic event.

35. You taught a buddy how to do your workout routine.

36. You learned a new exercise from someone else.

37. You asked a server to alter your order so it would be a bit healthier.

38. You ate plenty of fiber.

39. You caught yourself comfort eating and managed to do something else.

40. You forgave yourself if you comfort ate and felt bad for doing so.

41. You put your gym bag in the car for tomorrow.

42. You decided to forego a fad diet.

43. You helped someone who’s struggling.

44. You didn’t give up on something that matters deeply to you.

45. You read something uplifting...

46. And shared it with someone else.

47. You intentionally connected with a friend.

48. You stopped ruminating and let go of a negative thought.

49. You trusted someone to listen to your goals and dreams.

50. You felt truly proud of yourself at least once today.


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