Have any of you noticed this hashtag popping up on twitter or instagram: #wycwyc?
It stands for, “what you can, when you can” and it’s a good reminder that small actions toward well-being are just as important, if not even more so, than the grand gestures. It’s the idea that even the seemingly minor positive things we can do for ourselves are worth doing; they add up to a better life over time.
It’s the brainchild of healthy lifestyle masterminds Carl Birnberg and Roni Noone, and I have to say this approach helped me break through the fitness block that’s been keeping me pretty sedentary lately.
Let’s take yoga. I really enjoy yoga; it makes me feel physically and mentally better. I love my local yoga studio, Wake Up Yoga, but going to a class there takes a two-hour chunk out of my day and I have been really busy lately. So, one morning last week, in the #wycwyc spirit, I googled “free yoga videos”, rolled out my yoga mat in front of my desk, and did a 15-minute session that I found on the terrific site Do Yoga With Me. It’s now bookmarked as a reminder that doing 15 or 20 minutes of yoga right at my desk when I need a break is so much easier to tackle than a full-on 90 minute class. It’s also way more productive than mindlessly scrolling through my facebook feed or staring at the blinking cursor in a blank word doc.
I think the real magic of the #wycwyc philosophy lies in the snowball effect it inevitably sets off. After a few days of doing a couple quick desk side yoga sessions, I felt more energized than I had in weeks. Suddenly, the idea of going to the gym didn’t seem so daunting–especially if I was content to simply pedal away on the elliptical trainer for 20 minutes. (I ended up sticking around for 30 minutes.)
And the next day, the prospect of another trip to the gym was more appealing than off-putting. Carla and Roni have actually written a book about the what you can, when you can approach to health and wellness, and I’m excited to read it when it comes out in April. Wearing the right clothing helped me get into yoga too and there’s lots of pants and other apparel designed for stretching.
Anyway, for the moment at least, I no longer feel like I’m spiraling into a pattern of sloth but easing back into the fitter, more active life I want. If you are feeling the need for a quick shot of solidarity and inspiration on the wellness front, search out the #wycwyc hashtag and feel the big power of little lifestyle adjustments. Microyoga followed by tea and relaxation. That’s bliss.