New Year's resolution season is here again. My friend V is one of the resolvers, and I'm worried that she may find herself among the many whose annual attempts at behavior change are short lived.
She's trying to pull off a massive change and she's going at it without much of a plan. She wants to stop eating sugary sweets (candy, pastries, soda, that kind of thing). V loves sweets - she's one of the only grown-ups I know that will actually buy and eat a full sized candy bar - so this is big for her.
She's going cold turkey, with only a small jar of sugar free candies at her desk to help her. It's just her, her willpower, and her little jar of candies against this powerful monster of a sugar habit. So scary…
When you're trying to pull off long term change - like eating healthier - doing it in small steps that you can gradually work into your lifestyle gives you a much better chance of success than trying to go big all at once.
We've seen that approach work in our family. For years, Suzan and I had desperately wanted to eat healthier, both for ourselves and our girls. But talking about it, "just trying harder", and continuing to feel bad about it weren't working.
Then we tried a small, specific change - one healthy smoothie a day - and we were able to make that stick. From there we saw our preferences shift, seemingly on their own, to more fresh fruits and veggies, and less fried and processed foods.
It's the same approach that BJ Fogg's Tiny Habits behavior change program is based on, and he's kind of a big deal in the behavior change space.
It's also the idea behind these quotes from some other fairly smart fellows:
When you're trying to eat healthier, keep your changes small, manageable, even comfortable. Have a plan for when your motivation and willpower fall (because they will). And commit to consistency, not intensity. Keep at it, even if it's only a really small version of your thing on low/no motivation days.
For smoothies, don't hesitate to make it a 1-Ingredient Super Smoothie when you need to. It'll feel silly, but it will keep your smoothies in your day and in your life on even a really tough day. Then you can bounce back the next day even stronger.
Have an awesome day.
If you enjoyed this article then you might want to check out my Guided Smoothie Tour weekly email series. Here's what you get on the Tour:
If any of that sounds appealing, then let me know which email address to use and we'll get you started. If not, no worries at all. Either way, have an awesome day.