Baby steps to Big Change

by Yasmin Nolasco

When impactful events occur in our lives and we realize we have to make a change, it can be overwhelming. What happens when we create a goal like wanting to lose 20 pounds due to prediabetes? We have a vision for what we want to see and feel which is a great motivator to get us moving in the right direction. The vision is clear but then we become overwhelmed with all the changes that need to happen in order for us to accomplish our goal. By embarking on the path slowly, we have the chance to look around and consider all our options as we learn and grow. It also gives us the time to see the value. We must first ask ourselves, “Why am I losing 20 pounds and how is this going to benefit me in the long run. What will happen if I don’t follow through with the changes?” This is why it’s necessary to create smaller weekly changes.

The key to creating a new healthy habit is to take baby steps by changing one thing at a time so that you stick to it and make the change a part of your routine without fail. List the options and plan to reach your goal.  An example of this is exercise. We know we need to work out 3-4 times a week but if you are not used to cardio movement then that may seem like a lot. First, we must list the physical activities that we enjoy and create a plan. First make a list of the options you have for your goal. List the physical activities that you enjoy like walking, biking, or dancing. A baby step would be to start the new physical activity like walking twice weekly and slowly increase to 3 then 4 times a week.

According to health psychology research, it takes 21-66 days to create a habit, a new behavior to become automatic.

While creating new healthy habits we may find it challenging and regress back to old patterns. This is when we must practice self-compassion. No one is perfect and we all have those weak days when we want to indulge and forget about discipline. This is ok as long as you allow yourself one day of indulgence and gain the willpower to return back to healthy habits the following day. We all fall down. What matters most is how quickly we get back up. Learn from our mistakes and keep moving! Continue walking the path to health.                   

For more nutrition advice, you can book a consultation or call our office at 240-766-4552

You may also like