Creating a Good Habit
It was my first race, and I was near the end. The finish line was in sight. My Winnipeg Jets toque had shielded me from the onslaught of sleet and rain. I had no idea how fast or slow I was. All I cared about was that I had participated and I hadn’t walked. I was still running. I was smiling too (in between gasps for air).
I thought about the friends who had helped me get to this moment, to encourage me and train me ‘from the couch to 5 km’ in two weeks. It’s amazing what a little inspiration can do to compel oneself to start leading a more healthy life. I wanted to surprise her. But I needed some help. My friend (and naturopath) Ben had designed training runs for me and took me on my first jog along the waterfront in downtown Toronto. My good neighbours T.J. and Nate led me in some early-morning practice sessions along the lakeshore.
And it had all come down to this. There were a couple hundred metres to go. I should have been tired. A few words from Isaiah must have been ringing in my head … On wings like eagles.
The last two hundred metres were probably my fastest of the entire race. Jennifer had long since finished (she was fast), but I imagined she was impressed.
A couple months later, Jennifer and I were engaged. And by the following year, T.J., Nate and I were still doing 5:30 a.m. runs in the middle of winter. A one-off race triggered by a simple decision had led to a great habit that now involved more than just me.
In life, we make decisions each and every day. Some of them are routine, while others are more ambitious. We often make decisions in response to problems. A long time ago, I attended an entrepreneurial summer camp known as Shad Valley at the University of British Columbia. There was one key principle that I will never forget: a good business begins with a problem worth solving.
What’s Our Problem?
Last summer, Jennifer identified our Problem:
There is no easy way for real people to connect on a daily basis to improve their wellness and share what they’ve learned on their journey to help others.
As someone who lives and breathes health and wellness, this gnawed at her. Trained in kinesiology and health promotion, and having spent time working with local governments and corporations to develop programs which encourage healthy living, as well as having some interesting and somewhat difficult twists and turns in her own wellness journey, she felt compelled to sign up to solve this. And I was excited to be a part of it, inspired to make a difference in my life and the lives of others.
Entrepreneurship can sometimes be like entering a sporting event for the first time. It begins with motivation and continues with training and plenty of faith. Why did we sign up for this? Just a few of our reasons include:
- We are compelled — we want to help others improve their well-being.
- We’re having fun not entirely knowing what we’re doing.
- We are all told to dream and that we can do anything, so we are choosing to believe this.
- We like working with each other and others in this journey.
- We’re becoming better versions of ourselves, and improving our own wellness, along the way.
- We’re building community focused on healthy lifestyles.
- Because we know we can finish.
Jennifer (with the help of technical experts, including Wayne and Mark) is developing Wehl — a health and wellness social platform, a community where users can improve themselves and inspire others to live each day well.
The prototype is a couple months away still, but it feels good to be running towards the finish line and seeing where it goes. This blog will be our forum for sharing with you the stories of Wehl.
We want you to live an extraordinary life, full of health and wellness. Like signing up for that first race, we hope you’ll glean useful nuggets of wellness from our journey that can become patterns in your life and the lives you touch. We want to hear about your journey too!
We hope you’ll join us!