How to create good health habits that stick

RESEARCH shows that habits account for about 40 per cent  of our behaviour every day, so you can understand why it’s so important to create good health habits that stick, because this is one of the key secrets to lasting weight loss.

My Autumn Success Drive blog last week was all about goal-setting and breaking the big goals down to mini goals because this is what helps provide the momentum to reach the big goals.

The thing that most people find very hard to do when they’re trying to lose weight is to change their behaviour towards food and maintain a consistent healthy lifestyle.  It’s a constant challenge to use willpower to be consciously on top of your eating the whole time.

But it’s only through repeating the same behaviour day in and day out that healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle become automatic.

When this happens you don’t even have to think about it because your subconscious has taken responsibility for your behaviour. And this is how the Slimpod works – by gently nudging you into healthier behaviours without any of the effort!

One of the reasons so many people struggle to lose weight and keep it off is it just becomes too hard.

If you think about your eating habits over the past 10 years, they’ll probably resemble something like a rollercoaster ride rather than a cruise!

Nearly every habit you have today, good or bad, is the result of many small choices and decisions made over time.

And it’s the repeated pattern of small healthy behaviours that will lead to long term weight loss.  So remember those mini goals from last week’s blog – this is the next step after you’ve created those mini goals!

How to create health habits that stick

  1. Make them really small and easy

Start with something that is so easy that you need no motivation to do it.   If you have a fitness goal of 50 squats a day start with five and work your way up.  Do these at a regular time.   Make it easy enough that you can get it done without motivation.

  1. Develop the habit in very small ways

Success is a few simple disciplines, practised every day; while failure is simply a few errors in judgment, repeated every day.—Jim Rohn

One per cent improvements add up surprisingly fast and make you feel great when you know you’re achieving something.

Rather than trying to do something huge from the beginning, start small and gradually improve. Along the way, your motivation will increase, and your habit will gently become automatic – which is what you want!

Gradually increase the number of squats by one or two each day. Consistency is the key and you’ll be amazed how well you do!

Create a cornerstone habit

A cornerstone habit is something you begin your day with and this particular action sets you up for the rest of the day. I always begin my day with some exercise.  It’s either walking the dog, going to the gym or playing tennis (at 7.30 am!).

I have been doing this for five days a week for many years and I simply can’t start the day without it.  Even on holiday I have to swim/walk/jog in the morning before everyone else is up.

What could you set as your cornerstone habit – do tell me below!

Next Monday I’ll have more tips on how to create and develop great habits – watch out for my blog!


20 thoughts on “How to create good health habits that stick”

  1. That makes so much sense, I tend to try and change too many things at once and inevitably fail at all of them, so this would be a good habit to adopt in all areas of my life, not just fitness and weight loss, thank you Sandra

  2. I am trying to develop a habit of walking. I drive to places I could easily walk to. I decided to enter for the memory walk to inspire me and it is working. Exercise is so important and many of us don’t realise the benefits. Thank you Sandra .

      1. Hi Sandra,
        I really hope I have cracked it!! We did the memory walk on the 30th September and it was an amazing experience. Since then I have continued to walk and my husband has even joined me since he has seen the benefits I have gained.

  3. i think ive just realised to aim small at first cos the bigger statements of i WANT TO LOSE 3 ST
    dont happen quickly..but over time it can happen.. so I will start by stopping being greedy on danish pastries and not eat 2 a day[yoikes written down that sounds awful} a bad habit I started coupe months ago

    1. Sandra Roycroft-Davis

      That’s a great place to start Karen. Even just cut down to one danish to start with. Baby steps!

  4. I’m not very good with drinking water so I am going to aim to drink 2 glasses of water every morning before having my ritual cuppa or breakfast

  5. Very good idea. I’ve just bought a static bike to help rehabilitate my knee after surgery. Plan to make this the morning and evening cornerstone along with dome basic Pilates stretches. Three years (two pre/one post surgery) without dancing twice a week has had inevitable consequences.

  6. My morning ritual consists of 10mins meditation, hand and face exercises, all while still in bed. I then drink a cup of hot lemon, do some yoga/Pilates exercises followed by a 10 minute SWORKIT workout on my iPad. I then check my diary, have a shower and then eat porridge for breakfast. I have followed this routine for over a year. I recently had some Amatsu treatment and was told I don’t drink enough water so my new habit is to drink 8 glasses of water a day

  7. I love to swim.
    My chum (who I hadn’t seen for a long time) called about another matter,bUT just happened to mention her new favourite exercise place..a local pool I had never tried out..I met her there the next day, and..that’s it! I’ve found a new fitness spot..comfortable for me, and I aim to make into my new 3×/week habit.And I can stay in touch more with an old friend,

  8. Great ideas. Slowly, slowly catchee monkey. I’m going to start with warm water and lemon juice then 10 sit-to-stand exercises, push ups and bridges. It’s a start!

  9. Fantastic. Really motivating. I am going to start with five squats tomorrow, and five sit ups. This is great stuff for me. I have lost my way with exercise and portion control.

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About Sandra
Founder of Thinking Slimmer
Food addiction expert
Member of All-Party Parliamentary Obesity Group
Huffington Post contributor
DipCHyp HPD NLP MasterPrac
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