Is This What Hard Looks Like?

I have had a hectic ten days. We are exhibiting at the Ideal Home Show, and the website is flying. Friday was our best day ever online, double our previous record! On the outside, everything is going well. But inside, I can feel, all is not well and that problems are coming.

It’s the first day of April, and it is now 90 days since I made a personal commitment to become the person I have always wanted to be through developing good habits and sticking to them day after day. I can trace the success that we are having now, directly back to the changes I made in January to the way I live my life and the formation of these “good habits.”

But it’s becoming hard to maintain them. Life is getting in the way. At the start, it was difficult because the habits were new. Then I went through a period of a few months where it was just so easy to do them. I could see the powerful and positive effect the habits were having on my business, my team and my mental health.

But now 3 months in, I can feel these habits slipping. It’s almost like complacency has got in the way. With the show season starting its harder to maintain my routine. There are more calls on my time, unusual working hours that affect my morning routine by forcing me to work late the night before. The early flush of enthusiasm has gone, and now it’s just a routine.

I can feel it slipping a little more each day.

Have you experienced this too? Are your good habits going by the wayside? Have you stopped going to the gym, eating healthy, walking or cycling to work? Are you letting life get in the way of your dreams and goals?

Sadly, I don’t think its an easy fix. I know that we must fight this. I guess this is what it means to work through the hard times. I have always imagined the hard times to be physical things. It’s obvious in the mountains or out on my bike when it’s hard. My pounding lungs and exhausted legs mark it out.

In business the hard times are easy to spot too, they appear when we are short of money, or a supplier delivery is late or out of stock, or we make a mistake in production.

But this hard time is more subtle, and I think much more dangerous as I could so quickly let go and give up. My good habits have carried me forward in the most incredible way over the last 90 days. But now it’s getting hard; the habits are slipping.

I’m going to bed later, getting up later and doing less exercise. Working longer hours and not making time for my green smoothie, drinking red bulls and junk food on long drives in the van and eating a takeaway rather than cooking.

It’s unbelievable how quickly these old habits come rushing back. In just ten days I can see my old life flooding back. I know I must resist. I must find the strength to get back on the good habit pathway. But it is hard. There is that word again!

Writing this is helping. I’m sitting in the caravan, it’s a beautiful morning, and I’m watching the sun come up. It occurs to me that the solution probably lies with making time for myself. The bad habits come when I let the world crowd in on me. I become reactive to problems, to demands and pressures on my time. I work harder and longer hours to compensate, but in doing so, I give myself less time and space to think and breathe. Less time to write, less time to exercise. Less time to connect with my “why”. Less time to think each day about my dreams and goals and why they are important to me. Less time to remember how thankful I am for the opportunities that life has given me.

So today, I’m going to concentrate on slowing down, breathing deeply, making time for each activity. Enjoying each one, not rushing things. Thinking more. Writing more and yes, exercising today for the first time in nearly a week. I’m making today a “reset” day.

I hope you will join me. Press the button to reset yourself and start thinking about your goals and dreams again. I know that maintaining good habits is hard, but let’s fight our demons and become the people we have always dreamed of becoming.  Long before others believe, you must believe it’s possible.

Remember, we climb the mountain, not in giant leaps but one small step at a time.

Thanks For Reading!

Hi, I’m Luke Bream, the author of this blog, one of the co-founders of Valentte, hillwalker, cyclist, dreamer and an eternal optimist! My writing is focused on learning how we create the life we have always imagined, become the person we have always wanted to be in order to fulfill the dreams and goals we have set ourselves. I believe there is a power within each of us to achieve whatever we commit to mastering. Want to hear more? Read my full story. (coming soon…)

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7 replies on “Is This What Hard Looks Like?

  • Lorna Wheeler

    Hi Luke, Continue to be inspired by your blog posts but having read today’s wonder if you are trying to assimilate and implement too many new things too quickly? After 90 days perhaps now’s the time to consolidate and distil your new lifestyle practices rather than trying to fit more into your life? Enjoy the wonderful results your business, team and yourself have seen from your new focus for a while and take time to reflect. Perhaps build in a reset day regularly to evaluate where you are.
    Life holds so many wonderful opportunities and challenges, and it’s great to read of your journey , but is it really possible to embrace everything beneficial ?! Very best wishes.

    Reply
    • Valentte

      Wise Words Lorna and thank you. You are right. I will do my best, but at heart, I’m a perfectionist, Virgo who dreams of being able to do it all!
      Best Wishes and thank you again for your much-appreciated advice.
      Luke x

      Reply
  • Lucy Penn

    Luke. Adding to Lorna’s note, my experience is that sometimes it feels like we have ‘slipped back’ but this is simply part of the process of learning and embedding. My old way would be to judge and criticise myself which was hard work and made things worse. Now I’ve learnt i haven’t gone back to the same place because, by having achieved for a while, I have a different awareness and perspective so I can’t have gone back to exactly the same place. When I can accept it’s happened without judgement, recognise I need to re-learn from this new perspective and take the small steps back to where I was I always find I’ve strengthened the action. If you’ve written a blog about cutting yourself some slack, re-read it 😉

    Reply
    • Valentte

      Hi Lucy
      Thank you for your message. Your perspective has helped me and you are right. I behave in the same way as you used to when I feel my standards slipping. Your observation that we don’t slip back all the way is very true. Thank you, both Lorna and you have given me something very valuable to think about.
      Best Wishes
      Luke x

      Reply
  • TRACY ALLEN

    Hi Luke
    Many thanks for these blogs which make for great reading and rethinking what is truly important in life not just for oneself but for all life on this beautiful planet. Many thanks also for the lovely pictures in which one can reflect and appreciate the beauty that surrounds us all. Keep up the good work – don’t give up on the ways you are helping yourself – as you say, one small step at a time.

    Reply
    • Valentte

      Hi Tracy
      Thank you for your encouraging words. They are greatly appreciated. You are right about the beautiful planet that we live on. I am always reminded of this when I spend time in the caravan.
      The central table where I eat and write has windows all around and during the show season, I get to visit some beautiful parts of the country.
      As soon as I get up I open all the blinds, even if it’s still dark. I love watching the dawn light as it washes the night away. It reminds me of the power of warmth, both physical and emotional to lift our spirits.
      Thank you for lifting my spirits today.
      Best Wishes
      Luke x

      Reply
  • Valerie Barson

    I first saw your product at the Ideal Home exhibition a few years ago and purchased a box with reed diffuser candle and spray bottle in The lemongrass and rosemary. I was very pleased with it and have subsequently purchased more on line. However, unfortunately I’ve had a couple of problems with a candle keep going out, one of the previous ones burnt ok but left almost third of wax still in the glass. The diffuser has evaporated very quickly whereas the original diffuser lasted a very long time and I felt the product worth the price.
    I’m sorry to have to complain but I presume you would prefer to know. Perhaps you’d be kind enough to respond. Thank you

    Reply

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