With the summer Olympics happening in a few weeks, I’ve been thinking about the athletes and the deep level of commitment required by anyone who gets to that level of competition. Watching interviews with some of them sharing insights into their lifelong dreams and endless preparation is awe-inspiring. It’s hard for me to imagine all the sacrifices they needed to make (and continue to make) every day in order to get to the point of participating in the games. Simply amazing!
Everyone has goals (maybe not Olympic-size, yet still important) that they’d like to accomplish in their lives. When it comes to healthy eating goals, most people have a basic idea of what they could and should do to improve things; and yet they don’t. Making eating changes – or any change for that matter – is often easier said than done.
Breaking an old bad habit and establishing a new healthier one can be extremely difficult – and scary. I’ve worked with hundreds of people over the years that have been successful at making healthy eating changes and accomplishing their goal of living healthier, more fulfilling lives. Here’s what I’ve coached them to do to be successful. You can use these 5 winning strategies to accomplish your goals too.
1. Dig deep and find a compelling reason to make a change.
Ask yourself (over and over) why you want to eat healthier. Why is it so important to you? If you can’t come up with a reason that is urgent and compelling enough, you’re not likely to be successful over the long haul. The “why” will be what motivates you along the way and it will keep you focused when you are losing steam. Your compelling reason will be the strength you need to overcome obstacles and the courage to continue on your journey.
2. Start small and don’t attempt to do it all at once.
Don’t try to do everything at once. Break it down in to baby steps. For example, if you want to cut out soda, start by reducing it. Instead of having it whenever you’re thirsty, limit it to just certain times of day and drink more water. As long as you keep taking the small steps, you will achieve you’re ultimate goal.
3. Give yourself credit every day for the healthy choices you make – no matter how big or small.
Giving yourself credit doesn’t mean you have to yell from a mountain top (or post on Facebook) about what you’ve done – unless you want to, of course. It’s simply the honest acknowledgement of your own capability and the quiet recognition that you really did do what you set out to do – and you are sticking with it. Hooray!
4. Always be kind to yourself especially when you have a setback.
This quote says it all…
“Life is way too short to spend another day at war with yourself.” -unknown
Nobody is perfect, and even the best and brightest make mistakes. Instead of dwelling on setbacks, learn from them and then move on – quickly. Being consistently self-critical can easily lead to failure. The sooner you let go and get back to your healthy eating game plan, the sooner you will accomplish your goals.
5. Have a support system in place to hold you accountable.
Making healthy eating changes is challenging for most people. It’s extremely helpful to have a person (or people) in your life that you can report to who will give you honest feedback without being judgmental. This can be a family member, significant other, teacher, coach, or nutritionist. There’s no need to go it alone. Find others who share the same goals. Build a tribe of people around you who can push you forward and you give support along the way. It should be someone you trust who really cares about you personally and wants you to succeed; this is very important.
ARE YOU READY TO EAT BETTER SO YOU CAN START FEELING BETTER?
I would LOVE to be the person who helps you with that. Together we can create a personalized healthy eating plan that fits your lifestyle. We’ll make it achievable and sustainable so you can be successful. You don’t have to be an Olympic athlete to BE A WINNER at healthy eating.
Email or call me at 732-494-1149. Let’s get started with a conversation.