Healthy Habits

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Healthy Habits

We all know that leading a healthy lifestyle has a great impact on our energy, longevity and happiness. With such amazing outcomes, why does it seem so hard to achieve?

The fact is, habits are just hard to break. To make a long-term change that sticks, you have to start small, set goals and be consistent. And then forgive yourself if you backslide. That can be part of the process too.

Tips for creating – and maintaining – healthy habits

Start small. You can’t do it all at once. Most people need weeks and weeks of retraining to make something a new habit. Sustaining major changes over a long period of time doesn’t usually work out well. So think of something small you can do now – like drinking an extra glass of water a day instead of a soda – and see how long it takes to become a habit.

Be consistent. Being consistent about when you drink the glass of water – at morning, with lunch, after exercising or before bed – helps you tie it to another event you do every day. That makes it easier to remember.

Write it down. Document your progress. When you write it down, you have a visual reminder of when you started and how long you’ve been practicing your new habit. Make it a game to get to 30 days in a row – or 50 – or 100! You can create spreadsheet, jot it on a piece of paper or on a calendar – whatever option is convenient and easy.

Change your environment. If part of your new healthy habit entails breaking a bad habit, like snacking on cookies every day after school or staying up too late, change something about your pattern or environment. Put an apple next to the cookies, for a visual reminder of a healthier after-school snack. Set an alarm for when to go to bed (and then when to get up!)

Celebrate. You know creating new habits are hard, so when you reach a goal, celebrate! Try to keep the celebration tied to something healthy too. For example, if your new goal was to eat healthier after school, resist the temptation to reward yourself with a package of cookies. Think of something else fun – a movie out, a trip to the swimming pool, an indulgent hour playing video games.

Repeat. Repeat your success with a new goal. Pretty soon, setting healthy habits could become a habit itself!

 

This information was adapted from WeRNative.org, a website for Native Youth by Native Youth


 

 

 



Many articles in this section were adapted from WeRNative.org, a website for Native Youth by Native Youth