Broken Resolutions Already? Some Tips on How to Achieve Your Health Goals Successfully

TORONTO, Jan. 19 /CNW/ - The start of the New Year often brings great intentions and an ambitious list of resolutions — some attainable and most? Completely unsustainable.  For many, personal resolutions to achieving better health, such as weight loss or quitting smoking, wane quickly along with the initial good objectives and keen enthusiasm.

The good news is that there's a plethora of educational information to draw on to help us navigate and maintain course on our journey towards better health. Because how we get there is sometimes the biggest challenge.

Aristotle taught, "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." And although certain healthy habits may be difficult to initially form, with simple steps and self-discipline they can be nurtured and maintained as part of your healthy lifestyle. 

A 30-Day Risk-Free Trial Approach

You hear about these "risk-free" sales opportunities in the media, but have you applied the same concept for your own personal benefit?  It is said that it takes at least 30 days to develop a new habit, so why not try your "risk-free" resolution for a minimum of 30 days? 

Choose a simple task and implement it into your lifestyle each day.  For instance, are your food choices failing the grade?  Then commit to a reasonable, simple goal for the next month.  Increase your vegetable intake by two, or better yet, four portions.  Raise your fibre intake by 10 grams a day.  Or, cut the coffee drinking in half. Best of all, forget the fried foods for forty days and forty nights.

You make the call, but make it attainable, so it will be sustainable.  See how you feel after a month.  Then, set a new 30-Day Risk-Free Trial to another segment of your life.  How about walking or exercising three days a week until you achieve 30 days of exercise in total? (That's 10 weeks in this case.)  Try it. You may be surprised how easy it is and how great you feel.

The All-or- Nothing Method

This is one to avoid!  We often place undue pressure on ourselves.  When we start a weight-loss program, the first "bad" day that we happen to over-indulge, we quit.  Why?  Mistakes are part of the learning process.  Slow and steady is a great option for most people.  It helps reduce the stress associated with our need for attaining perfection.  Get over it!  We all make mistakes.  It doesn't mean you have to give up so quickly!  Sometimes, you need to take two steps backward to move positively forward.

Phone-a-Friend Lifeline

Chronic stress is bad for your health.  It weakens your defenses and reduces your ability to cope.  Good interpersonal relationships with family and friends can provide emotional, mental and physical support to help reduce the signs and symptoms associated with high stress.

But did you know that the people you associate with often have similar habits - good or bad.  To improve your health and chances of success, try to associate with friends who have healthy habits.  Join a goal-related group to help you achieve your resolutions;  for example,  a walking club to help keep moving,  cooking classes to eat healthy, a meditation workshop to stay cool and calm, or any other type of activity to support the health issue you are looking to improve.

Track Your Progress

Keep daily notes or comments for your personal information.  Be completely honest with yourself.  No one else has to see what you are writing.  It's surprising what you may learn!  For instance, when you journal EXACTLY what you eat, along with the portion and/or calorie content consumed, it may be more than you originally thought.  Often we forget about that "handful" of nuts and seeds, or the coffee (with double cream and sugar) we consumed on the run.  How about that large tablespoon of ice cream you ate after dinner to curb that sugar craving?  It all adds up and generally more quickly than originally thought.  Keeping an exercise or healthy food journal helps to increase motivation as you get to "see" the many positive health steps you've taken.  Then give yourself a solid pat on the back (or reward) for all your effort.

Doing the Doable

You can fulfill your health goals with planning, patience, and persistence.  And remember, that a successful journey to better health requires not only focus and commitment, but kindness to yourself too.

Michele Sevier Biography

Michele Sevier, DNM, DAc, is an educator and advocate of natural health and healing. As an independent advisor to Nutrition House, she is actively involved in many facets of integrative medicine including research, the formulation of specialized supplements, and providing natural health solutions to the general public through Nutrition House's 'Ask Our Expert' service at www.nutritionhouse.com.

SOURCE Nutrition House Canada Inc.

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Telephone/Fax: 519-484-9967, or E-mail: micheles@nutritionhouse.com

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