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How to Make Healthier Habits Stick

By Sara Butler

Starting a new habit, especially a healthy habit, can be challenging. While some changes may seem like second nature, some take a major commitment to make them stick. The trick to making healthy changes is to turn them into habits. Here are a few ways you can establish some healthy habits in the long term.

Try to Make Minimal Effort

It's estimated that about half of the things you do in a day is the behavior you repeat on a daily basis. That means that if you can find a way to make the behavior effortless, then you can find a way to make it a habit.

The key to this is to connect a new behavior to the one you already practice each day. That way, it won't take up too much headspace to just do it. For example, if you already eat eggs for breakfast in the morning, why not throw in a handful of spinach to add some more nutritional flair?

Be Realistic

When you set new goals to work toward, then the goals must be smart. That means you have to make them realistic, achievable, and measurable. It's not unusual to aim high when you create goals, but if you set them too high, then you're bound to fall short. So, start with something small you can use to work toward a larger goal. For example, if you don't cook but want to reduce the number of times you eat out per week, then don't try to go for seven meals per week at home. Instead, start out with one or two and go from there.

Start Small

No one would go out and try to run an entire marathon if they've never even run a mile -- and that's a lesson that's important to apply to your goals. Smaller goals are much easier to start and allow for growth. Remember, small changes you can make like trying one new fruit per week or eating one green vegetable per meal add up, bolstering your motivation and your confidence.

Don't Get Derailed

If you know there's something that will derail your healthy goals, then try to change it or avoid it altogether. If you know the pastries available each morning in the break room are a weakness, avoid the break room before lunch. If you have trouble making it to the gym after work, then pack your gym clothes and change into them before you leave so you don't have to go home first and lose motivation.

The healthy goals you have need healthy habits to help you get there. Follow these tips and you'll be on your way!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Snellville, Ga.

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