When I taught outdoor education, I introduced my students to the “five finger contract.” -The index finger represented their commitment to be safe, -the middle finger represented their commitment to refrain from put-downs, -the ring finger represented their commitment to try their best, and -the pinkie finger represented their willingness to try something new.
If the students were able to fulfill all of these requirements, the thumb — which represented fun — would wrap around the rest of the fingers. Students would sign their five finger contracts with high-fives at the beginning of the week.
No put-downs was probably the most often violated part of the “five finger contract.” But students rarely put down each other. They would put-down themselves.
I don’t use the five finger contract in my classes and personal training sessions, but maybe I should? 🙂 I see a lot of people use put-downs against themselves in fitness centers too. I find this heartbreaking. You don’t have to label parts of your body “bad” to make them better. You don’t have to beat yourself up to motivate yourself to work harder.
What if you tried a more positive approach? -What if you celebrated the fact that you were physically able to make it to the fitness center in the first place? -What if you celebrated all the things that you are doing to improve your health and wellness? What if you framed all of your hard work as motivation to keep going?
Thanks for reading. I hope you have a safe and healthy week.