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9 Tips & 3 Steps to Kickstart a Healthy Lifestyle Today

Have you ever had a burning desire to be annoying? Well, I had a lazy afternoon and I developed a super craving. But, I decided to do something about it. Right now. So I wrote this blog post to get it out of my system.



I’ll start by telling you something you already know. Like … No matter who we are, what we do, or our goals, a healthy lifestyle can only help. Because a foundation of good health is the perfect starting point for anything that we may want to undertake in life. We’ll look better, feel better, and have more energy. Plus, we’ll live longer, and enjoy the journey a lot more because we will suffer less as we age.


I’ll take it a step further and annoy you a little more, just because I am in such a good mood right now. And tell you something else you already know:


The best time to kick-start a healthy lifestyle was yesterday; and the next best time is now.

Hearing this, and now reading this, is terribly annoying because, for Pete’s sake, we know all this stuff. And we’ve known it forever. But here’s the thing: Knowing something, and doing something about it, are two very different things.


But why is it annoying?


I conclude it’s because we experience inner conflict when we try to justify holding two conflicting and contradictory thoughts & beliefs at the same time.


So what are those contradictory thoughts & beliefs I refer to?


Well, the first is everything that I said above. We know that to be true. We know it in our bones. We cannot dispute it, even if we try real hard.


Our other thoughts and beliefs stem from our lived experience. Our instant gratifications from our current lifestyle give us a false sense of invulnerability and it tells us that we’re ok and will be ok tomorrow and next week, next month, next year and maybe forever.


To hold conflicting beliefs is one of those afflictions that makes us human. I have never gotten a meaningful answer from my cat when I asked it to tell me whether it can hold conflicting beliefs. So I will side with conventional wisdom and say it’s a uniquely human thing.


I wondered to myself why I keep putting my health on the bottom of the list of things I want to focus on. And here’s what a little introspection gave me:


  1. Ageing is always something to think about later. Health, is always something to think about later.

  2. Dying, is never pleasant to think about. And thoughts about suffering a slow and painful death that lasts decades, is one of the worst things to contemplate.

So I put it out of my mind and rather browse Netflix for something meaningful to do with my idle time.


I realized that I end up having at least these two very good reasons to always put off doing something about what I know is going to be good for my health. Instant gratification from my current lifestyle tells me I will always be ok; and thinking about long term health is depressing or worse.


But until I think about what I can do to improve my long term health, I’ll never actually do anything about it.


Are you the same?


If you are ready to embrace a healthier lifestyle, these nine tips are a great way to get started.


 

Select your one or two ideas from the following list of 9. Try it for a week. Then come back to this list, and select one or two others. Find what works for you.


1. Start Small

You don't always have to hit the ground running (not that there is anything wrong with that). If you are taking your first steps towards a healthy lifestyle, focus on small, simple steps you can use to build momentum. A lot of marathons started with a walk around the block.


So what is that one small step you can take right now, that is in the direction of a healthier lifestyle?


2. Honor Your Personal Preference

Committing to a healthy lifestyle can take some work, so why make it harder by fighting yourself. Honor your preferences. Double down on the healthy foods you already like. Start doing more of that physical activity you already love.


So, what is that one small thing that you already do, that you can do a little more of?


3. Dress the Part

I don't mean you have to go out and get a brand-new gym outfit - but hey, if that would motivate you, go for it! This means that if you have an activity planned for the day, dress for it early. If you already have your running shoes on, you are far less likely to skip your run. This a principle that you can apply to anything, not only running. And here’s what that principle is: Do something small that makes it easier to do that healthy thing. If you make it easier to do, you’ll have less of an excuse not to do that one small thing.


So what is it going to be for you, where you can apply this principle? In my example, I used running. What’s yours? Is it going to the gym? Is it just walking more? Is it eating healthier? Is it stop smoking? What is it going to be for you? And then, what is that one small thing that you can do, to make it just a little easier to get going on that better lifestyle? It’s not hard to come up with a small number of little things that you can do to make it easier on yourself.


4. Find an Exercise Buddy

A good way to break up the doldrums of an exercise routine and add accountability at the same time is to find an exercise buddy. You will be less likely to miss out on your routine, and you will enjoy it more. It's a win-win. And this is also an example of a principle that you can apply to anything else.


So what is it hat you can do, to make your healthy habit a little more social, and/or a little easier to be accountable? Being accountable and social makes it easier to stick to.


5. 80/15/5

We’re sick of hearing about the 80/20 rule of most things. 80% of the benefit can be gained with 20% of the right effort. Well, 80/15/5 is a simple ratio to help you with healthier eating. It isn't meant as a cure-all, but it is a good general guide. 80% of what you eat are healthy foods you already enjoy, 15% are foods you know are healthy but don't necessarily love, and 5% are whatever you want foods. You can tweak the numbers a bit to match your preference. Find the foods that fall into those three categories, and play around with the quantities and frequencies that you eat it to make up something close to 80/15/5. This is similarly a principle that you can apply to other things too. It is a surefire way to make sure your lifestyle adjusts towards a healthier outcome. You don’t need to scrap your lifestyle and change everything all at once.


So what is it that you can think of that you can break into three categories on the healthy spectrum, and see how you can tweak it to fit into the ratio? Healthy eating is an easy one, but not the only one.


6. Start Each Morning with a Big Glass of Water

Yes, even before your coffee. This is a great way to get your day off to a great start. You will be well on the way to meeting your daily requirements. Don't stop in the morning though, most of us should be drinking much more water throughout the day. And if you already have a big glass of water in the morning, end your day with another mega pint ala Johnny Depp style.


7. Learn to Cook

It is so much easier to eat healthy on a budget when you can cook. You don't even have to be great at it. Just learn enough so that you can cook more meals more than you order. YouTube is a great place to learn. Start by finding a video recipe of one of your favorite dishes. Or take a short-cut. Join something like Weight Watchers or buy Hello Fresh, or do anything that can teach you not only how to cook but what groups of foods to eat on a daily basis to meet the target for eating enough without overdoing anything. The trick is to find something that fits your lifestyle.


8. Reward Yourself Without Sabotage

Make sure to reward yourself regularly. Some people may find this soft, but working towards a reward is just human nature. The key is to make sure you don't sabotage your progress. Taking a day off your routine is a reward. Taking weeks off, is sabotage. A piece of cake is a reward. A whole cake is a sabotage.


9. Don't Let Setbacks Turn into Failure

You will hit stumbling blocks on your path towards a healthy lifestyle. Don't let that scare you, though. A setback is a great way to learn what doesn't work for you, and why, so that you can plan better for next time it happens. Your results are going to come down to how well you bounce back from the inevitable setbacks and that way nothing that happens can become a failure.


 

Here's 3 action steps that you can take. See how you can expand it on your own:



 

Suggested Further Reading


Check out these gems available on Amazon. Note that Woodbridge Hypnosis earns from your qualifying purchases. However, these books may be available at your local bookstore or library. And if not, find anything else that may be on topic!


1. Eat. Sleep. Move. Breath




2. Healthy Gut, Healthy You




3. Wellness: Guidelines for a Healthy Lifestyle




4. Designed to Thrive: Learn the Untold Truths About Health




5. How Not to Die




 

These are small action steps that you can start in your life today. I am very passionate about our innate ability to form little things into natural habits that can shape our behavior in amazing ways. Check out the 15 Uncommon MicroHabits eBook that you can get here, for free. Check out the video and be sure to subscribe to the follow-up tips and tricks that I will share with you every other day, and take one small step on your wood bridge to success!


Also check out my e-Book, Transformation, that you can buy here.


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