A Step-by-Step Blueprint for a Better Life"
If you are looking to do something temporary and lose weight, then yes, it seems like a diet would be the best idea. Calories deficit, more cardio, burn more calories. In theory this makes sense, but more and more data points to the benefits of a mindshift switch as a better strategy because that can lead to a longer, healthier life.
Dr. Mimi Secor, author of ‘Health and Fit at any Age,’ says, ‘When people reach their goal and stop their program, most regain the weight they have lost and then some.’ Why? Because they go back to the old habits and have not taken the time to make fundamental changes. It has taken you years to build up these habits, it will take longer than 8 weeks to change them for the long term.
So, what can you do instead?
Creating small habits is a great way to achieve your goals!
A habit is a routine of behavior that is repeated regularly and tends to occur subconsciously. That last word is the most important word. An often used example is brushing your teeth. You do not think about brushing your teeth, you just do it. You do it twice a day (I hope) and you feel no emotions about it, you just do it. That is the sensation that you want to create when dreaming up a new habit.
At this time of the year you might say 'I want to eat better food,' but if you rely on take out a lot, you are going to naturally feel resistance and emotions (positive and negative) around that idea so you make it even smaller and more specific.
When it comes to making positive changes in your life, developing small habits is a great place to start.
are simple, consistent behaviors that are easy to do, and can be repeated daily. In this instance, the you might narrow down your focus to be 'I will pack my own lunch from home instead of getting take out near the office.'
can help you break down large goals into smaller, more achievable steps. 'I will purchase fresh fruit and veggies and portion it in the front of my fridge for snack time.'
will help you create a sense of accomplishment and build your motivation. 'I brought my lunch 4/5 days this week, I get an A.'
Each time you complete a small habit, you can check it off your list and feel a sense of accomplishment. This can help keep you motivated and focused on your long-term goals.
Let's put this example into perspective.
Today, you decide you want to make better choices, so this week you will pack lunch every day. Monday-Thursday you do that, you eat the meal you had prepped. It is home cooked leftovers and way less processed! SCORE!
Then you add on habit 2, when you go to the store you get pre-cut veggies. Life is busy right now, you are willing to pay more to do less. When you get home from work instead of going to the pantry, you go to the fridge and pull out pre-cut veggies. SCORE!
If you made that change today (SUNDAY in JANUARY), imagine the progress you would make by March. Now pitch that further down the road and think about NEXT January.
habits can help you create positive, lasting changes in your life. With regular practice, small habits can become automatic and help you achieve the long term goals you have set for yourself.