Find The Motivation You Need To Get Healthy Now
Written By: Tricia Davis – Payne
Here’s what is awesome and not so awesome about wanting to make a big change in your life when it comes to your health… You know what to do (awesome) but you lack the motivation to actually get it done (not so awesome).
You know you need to eat healthier food and you know you need to move your body, but you sit and think about it and the days just float by. What suffers when we can’t find motivation? Our weight, our mood, our sleep, our peace of mind, our stress… the list goes on and on.
When I get in a rut – and I do get in ruts – here are the 7 things I do to get the energy and motivation to get back on track.
- Trash your kitchen.
Nothing stops me from getting healthier food in my fridge and pantry than a cluttered, unorganized food mess. So I literally take everything out of the fridge. Is it expired? Trash it. Is it unhealthy? Trash it. If it is something whole, like produce that I left in the fridge too long, I compost it. I do the same with my pantry. If the food item is unhealthy, but never been opened, I donate it to a food bank, otherwise it goes in the trash.
Before I put back the healthy food, I clean all the shelves.
- Make a food plan for the week.
Sit down and plan out your healthy meals before you head to the store. This will keep you focused on what you need to buy and the correct portions. Whenever I head to the store without a plan, I buy more than I need and food that looks good but might not be good for me. With a well thought out food plan, you can stay focused on what you need and avoid the alluring food that isn’t part of the plan.
- Shop, Clean, Prep.
It’s not just enough to get the food you need, you have to clean and prep that food for the week ahead, or for the next few days at least, to help keep you focused on your goals. By spending the time to wash and prep your food, you are more likely to eat what you’ve prepared. If you have a family, this is even more important because distractions are a given. If I don’t get the food ready and spend time on this, I end up cutting corners and feeling too tired to do the prep work before cooking my meals. I am sure you can relate!
Also, you will feel obligated to eat that food throughout the week because of all the precious time you took to care for it.
- Do a deep clean of your house.
Clearing out the clutter and wiping all your surfaces and floors down is great for helping you stay focused on your health. Nothing complicates getting things done like clutter. By cleaning up the house, you are getting yourself ready to be focused throughout the week ahead.
This is especially true for your clothing. A great way to keep your clothing organized is to trash your closet. As you put back the items that hang in your closet, turn the hanger around the wrong way, hang it from the back, not the front. Now every 6 months, take out only the clothes that are still hanging backwards. These are the things you thought you would wear but didn’t. Now get rid of that stuff. Keep special occasion clothing in a separate space and go through that annually.
We tend to hold onto clothing we want to fit into someday, thinking it will be motivating to have it around. Nothing could be further from the truth. What you are doing is putting a constant reminder in front of you that says “you are too big to fit into me.” Instead, give those clothes away and feel the joy of giving something to those in greater need than you. When your clothes are too big because you lost all that weight, go shopping. Treat yourself right.
- Do something new every morning for 7 days.
Getting new habits is highly motivational. We tend to get stuck in routines and ruts, so break it up by trying something new that will help support your new healthy lifestyle. Start oil pulling, drink a glass of warm lemon water every morning, do some stretching or meditation, journal, find a YouTube 10 or 15 minute yoga practice you can enjoy every morning, go for a walk, read. Pick one and commit, even if you haven’t started eating right or working out yet. Just pick one and commit to doing it faithfully for 7 days. Then pick another one. By breaking up your routine and caring for yourself, even in small ways, you are telling yourself how much you love yourself and fueling the motivation you need to jump in with both feet.
- Do something new every night before bed for 7 nights.
Do you tend to get sucked into the computer or television at night? This is a great habit to break by doing something different. You don’t have to walk away from these things for good, but taking 7 nights to turn it off and do something loving before you sleep for the night fuels your motivation, breaks your routine up and helps you sleep better. A well-rested body and mind will have a much easier time finding and keeping motivation. Read, journal, take a long bath, go for an easy walk after dinner… whatever. Just make it a loving and calm experience.
- When it comes to moving your body, take it easy at first.
We tend to think that in order to lose weight, we need to workout Biggest Loser style; we need to go to the gym or sign up for a new exercise class. But this can be very intimidating if you haven’t worked out in a while (or ever) and it takes money. Drop this idea that you need to kill yourself in a gym or go to a class every night to get healthy. You don’t! After you get going, this can be a great way to keep your workouts fresh, but for now, just focus on doing 30 minutes of movement everyday. Go for a brisk walk, grab a couple of 1 gallon water jugs and find a basic workout video on YouTube. Maybe try some Qigong or Yoga. Just move at your own pace. The key is to move your body, whatever that means for you. It isn’t “go big or go home” here, it is “slow and steady wins the race” when you are getting back into the swing of things.
By taking these steps, you are not only getting yourself motivated to make the big commitment to your health, you are setting yourself up for healthy lifestyle changes that stick, making it much more difficult to get stuck in a rut down the road.
Tricia Davis-Payne’s passion for life has led her down paths exploring ideas of sustainability, renew-ability and cleaning up our act. She holds strong that changing herself is the path of least resistance to changing the world. One word at a time, she lives her passion through writing.
A native of Southern California, Tricia resides in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and daughter. After earning a degree from the University of Southern California School of Business, she has spent the last twenty years helping small start-ups to Fortune 500 companies grow revenues and enter new markets, specializing in Internet marketing.
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