How can I create healthy habits that actually stick?
When most of us think about healthy living, we often think it requires a complete revamp of our habits overnight. Changing how we eat, how we move, and our routines all at once can be overwhelming and stressful.
It’s not necessary to go from zero to one hundred when working towards your health goals. In fact, the small habits that we can be consistent with over time have the greatest impact!
How to Create Healthy Habits That Actually Stick
First, define your health goals.
It’s easy to say, “I want to be healthier” – but what does that mean to you? Use these prompts to define your version of healthy.
- How do you feel when you nourish your mind, body, and spirit?
- Who in your life inspires you to be the best version of yourself? What qualities do you admire about them?
- Imagine yourself 3 months from now in your optimal state of health and well-being. What does that look like for you? What activities are you engaging in? How is this different from where you are now?
After you’re clear on your definition of healthy and how it ties to your values, define the action steps that ladder up to it.
Second, define your action steps.
For example, let’s say your vision of health included moving your body to decrease muscle tension and increase cardiovascular strength. That’s a fantastic goal! But that doesn’t mean you need to start exercising every day this week. Instead, start with simple concrete action steps such as:
- Making a list of the types of exercise you enjoy.
- Walking with a friend 1x per week.
- Taking 2 at-home yoga classes this month.
You get the idea! These small action steps are concrete, measurable, and connected to your definition of healthy, which means your intrinsic motivation will be higher.
Third, keep track of your progress.
Keeping track of progress is powerful for multiple reasons.
- It holds you accountable to your goals.
- Checking off when you accomplished something is satisfying.
- It’s motivating to see a group of checkmarks growing. You don’t want to break your streak.
This is why Habit Trackers are my top tool for creating consistency with health habits.
My #1 Tool for Creating Consistency with Health Habits
This year, I’ve been using a Habit Tracker to create consistency with my weekly goals. It helps me stay accountable and track progress on the action items that matter most to me. Here’s an example of my weekly habit tracker.
First, I start by writing down each habit I want to perform. Then I assign a target number of days per week to each habit. Throughout the week, I place a checkmark on the days I completed it. SIMPLE. AS. THAT. At the end of the week, I have a visual reference for my performance and can make adjustments the following week.
Put It Into Practice
Here’s a blank template for you to get started with a Habit Tracker.
- Fill in your habits. Remember, these will be unique to you. They are dependent on your version of healthy.
- Set your targets. Don’t go from zero to 100. If cooking at home 4 nights per week feels unrealistic, start with 1-2 nights.
- Check your wins. Keep this tracker handy throughout the week. Check off your progress as you go and celebrate each check as a win!
What healthy habits are you trying to form? What’s getting in the way of staying consistent?
Schedule a FREE discovery call to learn how Everglow Nutrition can help you with creating healthy habits that actually stick.