There are many ways to maintain resolutions for a healthy lifestyle; put a price on your failure (make a bet with someone and be ready to pay if you don’t stick to a plan), set small goals instead of focusing solely on the bottom line, and find a responsible partner who can help you challenge the days you lose your motivation.
There are 7 habits that people who lead healthy lifestyles have in common. These habits involve self-control, as well as mastery over our interactions with others and our perception of the world.
Habit 1: Choose your battles
We are all flooded with potentially stressful situations every day, yet there is a brief moment when we have the unique human capacity to choose our response. Unfortunately, we have all been conditioned throughout our lives to react in certain ways to certain circumstances, and by reacting with conditioned responses, we give up our precious ability to choose the outcome.
For example, if someone is rude or inflammatory to us, our conditioned response would generally be to respond, at least, with annoyances and sometimes even anger. Instead of yielding to this conditioned reaction, we can choose not to let it bother us, or better yet, we can choose to understand and give up the tension. If we can choose positive, or at least neutral, responses, it has the power to bring us closer to our goals and increase the limits of what we can control. On the other hand, poorly chosen responses, or conditioned responses that are merely unthinking reactions, are likely to bring negative consequences and reduce our sphere of influence. This usually leads to feeling more out of control over your fate in life when, in fact, our responses often shape our perceptions and, in fact, even determine success or failure.
Taking responsibility for your health
Poor health and disease are at their peak and many of us assume this as a normal part of aging. Many people accept the burden of their ill health and the compromised quality of life it entails as something that simply “is” rather than something that can be controlled. They put themselves in the hands of doctors and pharmaceutical companies instead of taking an active role in their own personal care. This is an excellent, but unfortunate, example of a conditioned reaction.
Instead of accepting ill health or chronic illness as your destiny, be proactive in challenging the notion that you are a helpless victim and take responsibility for your health by carving and leading a healthier lifestyle.
Habit 2: Create and visualize your “final game.
Clarify what you really want. Take your time to visualize what you really want to accomplish, whether it’s balanced health, more money, being more organized, or creating a whole new life, allowing yourself to be really clear about what you want in your life, which will help you create a plan to get there. Writing this game ending or creating a board on which you have cut out images of your ideal life (a vision board) will allow you to keep it fresh and clear in your mind.
Once you have your final game expressed, you will be able to make smaller goals that will ultimately help you achieve the desired outcome. Taking stock of your smaller accomplishments will show you how far you have to go to reach your goal. In addition, having a clear understanding of your goals allows you to make smarter decisions that will help you reach them.
Start with your health in mind
The health you have as you age will be exactly the culmination of all of your health choices up to that point. If you want to be physically active, mentally sharp and energetic in your old age, the decisions you make today and every day thereafter must be strongly influenced by this desired outcome.
Ill health and illness did not happen overnight. While you may not feel that your health is compromised, your daily habits may be promoting disease through chronic inflammation and the acid-forming diet, and if they are, they will eventually catch up. It can be extremely difficult, but fortunately, it is never impossible to reverse the damage caused by unhealthy habits, so the lifestyle you choose today must be lived with the best possible health options to positively affect your health in your golden years.