Are you struggling to reach your goals? Have you fallen into old ways and you’re not sure how to change your life for the better?
Do you need to revisit and change your habits? Do you know how you can change your life and become the best you can be?
Below are 10 ways I’ve found that can help you to be the best you can be (and yes I’ve used them and made them a part of my life):
What do you want to achieve? To be successful in your achievements it helps to have clearly laid out and designed and positive goals in life. Lose weight, reduce body fat, become a certain size, develop your career.
Having goals can help you create action plans and motivate you to change, progress or improve. They can be big life goals, 6 monthly, weekly and even daily goals. They help motivation and change. Read Burn the Fat Feed the Muscle.
Create an action plan
Once you’ve set your goals, you can define how and when you’d like to achieve your goals (and dreams) – your action plan.
What action will you take, what changes will you make to make your dreams come true? When do you hope to achieve your goals? When will you review your actions and goals? What’s next once you achieve your goals? Read A Great Day at the Office.
Make better choices
Our lives and bodies are a result of the choices we make. From what we eat and drink to the career path and family life we lead. Choose to over indulge with large portions of crap food and it’ll probably catch up with you at some point.
From what you choose to eat for breakfast, what and how much you drink to what you do with your life – all of your choices affect who you are, what your body is like, how you feel about yourself and what your life becomes.
Make it important
To really make changes in your life, you have to place an importance on the goals and actions you’ve set yourself. What is really important to you? And why is it so important for you to make the changes your planning? Health, family, longevity, fun, family, happiness?
If you decide to make an effort to be more active or rest better in order to become fitter and healthier, remember why you’re doing it. If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way. If it’s not important, you may as well give up now. Give yourself a good reason (or two or three) to change.
Creating habits is a good way to make things easier. Habits allow you to go into autopilot so that you don’t need to consciously think about what it is you want to do. Like eating your breakfast then brushing your teeth, if you can turn actions into habits, it can make life a lot easier.
Habits of going to bed early enough to ensure you get enough sleep before you get up early to get an hour of walking in before work, leading to an improved mood and perhaps weight loss and improved confidence. Read Small Move Big Change and The Power of Habit for help with how to create micro resolutions and how habits can help you be successful.
The impact of eating well can be underestimated. They say that six packs are created in the kitchen and now that I’ve improved what I eat and seen results, I believe it. 4 weeks off exercise but me focussing on eating well and not over indulging has lead to a 7lb weight loss, around 5lbs of which is fat. Changing what and how much you eat can have a profound impact on your weight and how you feel.
Eat real food when you can. The types our ancestors used to eat: meat, fish, veg, berries, nuts, eggs and plenty of veg…did I mention veg? Try to avoid or reduce sugar intake, aim to eat slowly, and understand when you’re full. Watch portion sizes, and doing over indulge. Drink plenty water and avoid sugary drinks, calorific drink and diet fizzy / fizzy drinks. Banish the mid afternoon slump by eating real and tasty food, little and often and hydrate well.
Being active not only helps you to be able to eat more, but helps to improve your fitness, your mood and a whole host of other things. Being active (note I’m not saying exercising), is great. It might be hard to get into and perhaps sore or tiring at the start but it’s well worth it.
Find something you like (walking, running, swimming, cycling, gym classes, strength training, etc) and do it. Make weekly plans and stick up then. Enter and event if it helps to motivate you. Do it with friends or family. Fit it into your life, get up an hour earlier, do it in your lunchtime or straight after work. You don’t have to run a marathon, walking can be just fine – most importantly, do something you enjoy. And make it social if it helps.
When you’re making changes in your life, it can be important to let your family or friends know what you’re doing so they can perhaps support you and help you achieve your goals. Maybe you’ve said you’re going to go out for a walk at 6pm every week night, but you might need someone at home to step up and make the dinner (for you or the family) for when come back in. Or if you’re planning on making going to bed earlier to get more sleep, you might need your partner to buy into it too so they don’t ask you to stay up later to watch more crap on telly with them.
Partners can help with portion sizes, not over indulging too, but they need to know about your goals and why they’re so important to you. Another thing you can do is get friends or family to join you in your challenge, join you on your walks or runs. It can be a great way to catch up and a good motivator to stay on track too.
Measure your progress
Some people dread weighing themselves, but weighing yourself, or taking measurements can he a great way to see the progress you’re making with all of the actions you’re taking. Improved food intake + increased activity = a result. And that result is hopefully a reduction on body fat, body size and / or weight.
It’s great to see a weight or body fat chart go down over months or years. And it’s brilliant to be able to say ‘I lost x pounds of fat’ or ‘I lost 10cm off my waist.’ Measurements are great to show the progress you’ve made and to use as a goal for where you want to be (healthy!)
Being accountable can be a big motivator. Whether you’re accountable to yourself, your friend or your personal trainer that you’re paying lots for. Logging things makes you be accountable. So logging food intake on my fitness pal, or blogging about how your day went or how your goals are going might help to keep you on track.
Putting it on Facebook might help too, telling the world you’re going for a run at 630am might be a good deterrent to not do that run, and might motivate you to get up out of your bed for the run. It’s worked for me hundreds of times. Weighing yourself and knowing what action you took also makes you accountable. Has your weight increased because you ate badly last week? Or did you skip too many workouts?
Some people find that Weight Watchers or Lighter Life work for them, do what works for you. I find that regular weigh ins on my own, thinking about what I eat (and preparing it) and being active works for me.
What you do in your life is your choice, and you and what you become really are accountable only to you.
So do what you need to do to be who you want to be. Make it count.
Read the Happiness Code.