I think we can all agree that we all need a healthier life. We can eat better, get more exercise, and find better ways to relieve stress. Making those changes can be hard. New habits are not easily created and embedded in us.
So, how can you make those changes? How can you make them with a happy heart and not like feeling you facing a firing squad? Here are a few ways.
1. Start With Something You Enjoy
You can’t embrace something if you dread it and it makes you want to run away screaming. You need to want to embrace it. Find something you enjoy. Do you enjoy fishing? Then go fishing more often. Park far from the dock and walk a little extra to get there. If you enjoy cooking, experiment with healthier choices and see if you can find the meals that still taste great. List what you enjoy and see how it can help you be healthier.
2. Determine Your Motivation
Why do you want a healthier life? For me, it was the fact that I wanted to be around to see my grandchildren born and grownup. I needed to get healthier if that was to happen. It is a strong motivator. Determine why you want to have a healtheir life. Use that motivation to keep you going toward your healthier goal.
3. Keep Records
This sounds boring, but it really is a great way to embrace that new lifestyle. How many steps did you walk today? Do ten more tomorrow. How many calories did you take in? Improve it tomorrow. I keep records of my exercise, my eating habits, and even my hobbies. I like to see the progression.
4. Reward Yourself
Set goals and reward yourself. It could be watching a movie, a new scarf, a new video game, or anything you enjoy. It doesn’t have to be big, but it has to be something you can enjoy and remember your achievements when you see it.
5. Take It One Step At a Time
Don’t try to get there all at once. I used to think that I had to do it all at once and find success immediately. Well, I always failed and never seemed to get the traction back. I have since learned that I need to take baby steps and one step at a time. As I got one thing conquered, I moved to another. I found success this way.
6. Be Holistic
Don’t look at just one aspect of your life. Each segment of your life is connected. They cannot be treated alone. Each one impacts the other. To be truly healthy, they all have to be addressed and improved upon. When I am emotionally distressed, my body reacts to it. I will get headaches, or an upset stomach, or even find myself not sleeping good which in turn makes me sicker. My emotional problems have created physical problems which in turn can create problems with relationships, mental health and more. When you look to become healthier, look at all parts of yourself.
7. Have Support/Partners
It is important to have support in any endeavor we undertake. No matter how strong we are, we rarely can do it on our own. There is nothing wrong with that. We were designed to be socially interactive with others. That support is vital for success. Make sure you choose the right people though. Not everyone can give you the kind of support you need to be healthier. Many can be the cause of many of your issues. You do not want those who are toxic to your health to be part of this.
Choose supporters who aren’t negative. You need someone who is encouraging and won’t derail you.
8. Look at Each Day as a New Start
I have learned this hard way and was why I never embraced trying to improve my health. I had to learn that each day is a new day and a new start. When I did that, I found success in getting healthier.
No matter what you did yesterday…no matter what mistakes you made, you can start over today. I might have forgotten to walk yesterday, but that doesn’t have to stop me today. I missed one of my meds. Well, today I can remember. It is a new day. Once I realized this, I was able to make headway in being healthier.
9. Do It Because You Want To
It all comes down to doing it because you want to. I know I heard for years that I need to eat better, exercise, and be healthier. It had to be a desire deep within me in order to actually do it and find success. It might take a while to find the right motivation, but when you do, embrace it.
10. Make It Fun
When you embrace something, that means you take it close to you with enthusiasm. Then make it fun so you can do that right. Start off with fun stuff. Like to take walks in the woods? Then start hiking. Like to always be learning? Go to the museum and walk through it. Go to a new cooking class to learn how to create tasty yet healthy meals.
Do something with a friend or a family member. We decided to hike the Grand Canyon. So the whole family started to prepare our bodies for it. There was a lot of fun to it.