Habits Can Ruin Your Weight Loss

lethargic habbitWe all have habits and routines that work against our desire for positive change, and one of the places this is most obvious is in the choices we make about our health and well-being.  Even if we know that junk food isn’t good for us; even if we know we shouldn’t smoke; even if we know that guzzling a 12-pack of beer taxes our liver and kidneys and contributes to the formation of belly fat – we still keep doing it.  Why?

Most often, the culprit is HABIT.  We are used to doing things in a certain way, and when we try to make different choices we feel uncomfortable.

The good news is that habits can be broken, and the discomfort fades in a relatively short period of time.  Below are a few ideas for easing your transition from unhealthy lifestyle to healthy lifestyle:

1)  Awareness is the key to breaking unhealthy habits.

When you first decide to change your habits, start by paying attention to how often you engage in destructive activities.  Like when you grab that bag of potato chips and plop down in front of the television, acknowledge that you are making a CHOICE that does not support your ultimate goal of a healthy lifestyle.  You may still decide to eat the chips, but at least you’ll be doing so from a state of awareness and responsibility for your actions, rather than acting on autopilot.

2)  Start making better choices gradually.

Rather than taking the entire bag of potato chips with you, why not take a small bowl of chips and leave the bag out of sight? This may help you eat less while still feeling satisfied that you had a treat.  You can do the same thing when eating meals; put only half the amount of food on your plate that you would normally.  Eat it, and then wait several minutes before deciding whether you want more or not.

These small changes alone won’t be enough to transform your life, but they are a great start in reminding you that YOU have the control over what goes into your mouth.

3)  Get comfortable with discomfort.

Remember that discomfort is only a feeling – it can’t hurt you!  So what if you’re craving something fattening?  You don’t have to give in to a craving just because it’s there.  As funny as it sounds, when you just accept the craving and allow it to exist without trying to make it go away, it ceases to be a problem.  You’ll notice that if you don’t fight against it, it will fade on its own.  Cravings come and go, ebb and flow, just like waves on a beach.  Let them be.  Make peace with them and they’ll stop making your life hell.

These are all simple, easy ways to get used to changing your habits a little at a time.  The more you do it, the more comfortable you will get with making bigger changes that will have a positive impact on your health.

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