I was recently introduced to the Notre Dame football coach Lou Holtz’s acronym W.I.N. I was immediately in love with it. Here’s how the story goes.
The story of W.I.N.
Holtz instructed his players to ask themselves this question 35 times a day. He wanted them to think about it when they woke up, while they were in class, study hall, the weight room, the practice field, standing on the sidelines during a game and while on the playing field at a game. Holtz wanted his players to be able to learn to focus on what mattered most at any given time.
They went on to be a highly successful, highly decorated team due in part to this brilliant piece of coaching.
How does that apply to Health?
In our busy culture of multitasking and doing it all it’s easy to be distracted. And a distracted brain does not serve us. We simply can’t be focused on a multitude of things and do them all well. It’s not possible.
So to quiet down the noise and keep your eye on what really matters, get into the habit of asking yourself: What’s Important Now? If you gave it your focus and attention what could really move the needle and make a difference in your day and in your life?
By focusing just one choice at a time, you can make profound change. This is like the micro-choice version of a practice I call Habit Layering. When I’m coaching clients I ask them to focus on one habit at a time. Not 10 or 20 as we typically do when we go “all in” with a new fitness program or diet, but one. Once they are successful with that one thing, then (and only then) do we layer on another. By doing this they are setting themselves up for success. And when we experience success it builds are level of self-efficacy (our belief in our ability to be successful/ capable). This has profound effects as we continue to layer new things on. We start to believe we can. We start to see ourselves as capable and successful with our health.
So if you took habit layering, and then integrated W.I.N. what does that look like?
- Choose ONE habit to focus on for the week. Maybe drinking water with every meal or snack. Or eating veggies with every meal. Or moving for 10 minutes every day.
- W.I.N Your Day. Keeping that ONE habit front of mind ask yourself repeatedly through your day “What’s Important Now” to help you build this new habit? By returning again and again to your W.I.N. you can help build that new habit and rewire your brain to make it automatic!
Want to really amp it up?
Use a simple bullet journal to track your progress. At the beginning of every week write down your ONE habit. Each morning read it, and remind yourself of the W.I.N. Then each evening reflect back. Keep it brief. It’s about keeping it front of mind by integrating the practice of celebrating your wins from the day. By reinforcing your actions in thoughts you’re telling your brain that this information is important to store and rewiring occurs more readily.
Synopsis: tackle ONE habit at a time, W.I.N. the day, count your wins! #boom #habithacks
Want to integrate more of these ideas?
Join us in the Super You Studio. We’ll be applying these ideas and so many others so you can #hack your way to #health YOUR way!