When you feel inspired to start a healthy lifestyle by making some serious changes to your daily life, you might tempted to dive right in. But, you might want to think again.
It turns out that there are several great reasons why starting a healthy lifestyle gradually, rather than all at once, is the right way to go if you want to achieve your goals.
Establishing a Healthy Lifestyle Requires Patience
Whether you want to make multiple changes to your routine or mindset, or you just have one change that you would like to make in order to achieve a better state of health, go easy on yourself.
Whenever you attempt to make lifestyle changes, you should understand that this is a process, and it will take time, as well as support. And, according to the American Psychological Association, once you have decided that you are ready for change, the hardest part will be committing to your goal and actually following through with your plans.
Prepare by Making a Plan
In order to increase your odds of following a healthy lifestyle that you will be happy with, experts recommend creating a plan after doing a bit of research. By doing so, you can increase the odds of your success.
First off, set small goals that will be easier for you to achieve, and tackle one goal or one step at a time to make the process of change less intense. After all, if things get too difficult, you will be more likely to abandon your plans for a healthy lifestyle altogether.
Begin by identifying your short-term and long-term goals, but make sure that they are realistic for you. Then, break the goals down into manageable steps. Clearly define the steps, and make sure that they can be measured so that you can effectively and easily track your progress.
As an example, if you want to reduce your sugar intake, you might tell yourself that your long-term goal is to have your coffee without any sugar. Then, you could start by reducing the amount of sugar that you add to your coffee by a certain amount every week or two. This gradual change won’t be as shocking, and your taste buds will have time to adjust.
Tackle One Change at a Time
Tackling one change at a time is a great way to build yourself up to a healthy lifestyle. For example, if you want to get more sleep and drink less alcohol, doing both of those things might be too overwhelming at first. So, you might decide to reduce your alcohol intake first, or you might make it a point create a healthier sleep schedule for yourself so that you can be more focused and energized during the day.
Once one healthy behavior becomes a habit that is just a part of your daily life without having to force it, you can move on to the next habit that you would like to change. And, you might even notice that the healthy habit you already established actually ends up helping you achieve your subsequent goals.
Take Your Time
Change takes time, it’s a process, and it isn’t easy. Be gentle with yourself, stay focused, and set small goals. Before you know it, you’ll be living the healthy lifestyle that you know is so good for you!