Can you believe its already 2011? This is the time of year for new years resolutions. Many people will have resolutions to do with their health. Unfortunately some of these will be the same as last years and maybe some years before that too. The problem being that by middle to late January great intentions fade and we revert to usual patterns.
The two commonest new years resolutions we make are to lose a few pounds (or kilos) and to get fitter. This seems simple enough so what can get in our way?
Firstly, our beliefs. What we believe is a function of our collective past experiences. This includes both the results of our previous actions but also our observations of what other people have done. If we have tried to get fit in the past and haven’t then our belief system will tell us it can’t be done. The same applies to changing eating patterns.
So lets say we start out with some ideas about exercise and healthy eating. If we believe that our ideas can be brought to reality, we will set about doing them. If we believe they are not possible, then it is likely that the idea will go no further. There is a third option which sometimes is the default one where people set out to do something but deep down don’t really believe they will succeed.
A surprisingly large number fall into that third category where they set out on an exercise program or to improve their diet, and despite good intentions deep down, they don’t actually believe that they will succeed.
Yet if you look around, people have done it and there are countless stories of success. This means it can be done. In turn this means that for you to succeed the first step will be a change in your beliefs and mindset. As Henry Ford said, “whether we believe we can or we can’t, we are likely to be right”. This is therefore a choice you make as to what you choose to believe.
The second problem is a lack of a plan. The resolution to “get fit” or “eat better” is noble but vague. A plan to work out for 30 minutes, 4 times a week with the time and place written in your diary is specific, measurable and much more likely to be acted on. A plan to eat two extra serves of fruit and vegetables and stop eating potato chips is specific and measurable. So is I will drink water instead of soda.
The third problem is discipline. After having the idea followed by a plan you then need to put it into action. This goes well for the first few days but then there is a tendency to revert to what we always have done. If you do what you have always done you will get what you have always gotten before. Hence what is needed is the discipline to stick with your plan.
The “problems “of beliefs, lack of a plan and poor discipline can be overcome. You may need to work at them, as it may be a new experience. That’s fine. Nothing that is worthwhile comes without effort. Equally it is effort (note not struggle!) that brings rewards.
The final component is knowledge. There is no shortage of how to books out there yet as has been said if all we needed was how to books, everyone would be rich and of ideal weight. What you need is a guide to better health complete with tips, simple ideas and knowledge that is easy to understand and easy to apply.
Believe that you can, have a DIY Health action plan that you follow and start 2011 with a gift to your self of the best guide to health- Dr Joes DIY Health.
Please add your comments and thoughts below.
Make 2011 your year to look and feel better!
Medical Doctor, author, speaker, media presenter and health industry consultant, Dr Joe Kosterich wants you to be healthy and get the most out of life.
Joe writes for numerous medical and mainstream publications, is clinical editor at Medical Forum Magazine, and is also a regular on radio and television.
Joe is Medical Advisor to Medicinal Cannabis Company Little Green Pharma, Chairman of Australian Tobacco Harm Reduction Association and sits on the board of Arthritis and Osteoporosis WA. He is often called to give opinions in medico legal cases.