Getting Motivated to Make a Lifestyle Change

Create a system for achieving your goal and follow that system -one step at a time.

Getting Motivated to Make a Lifestyle Change

One of the biggest reasons that people don’t make a lifestyle change like this is because they have a hard time finding the motivation to do so. It just seems so overwhelming to so many people to make a change. I know it’s hard. This isn’t easy when we’ve all spent our lives eating high carb foods and being told that fat is bad for us. It’s a total mind shift and it’s something that scares people.

So how do we find that motivation? We make it easy on ourselves. We take things one step at a time. We create a system for achieving our goals and then just follow that system. Side note - Have you ever read the book Atomic Habits by James Clear? If not, I HIGHLY recommend it. It’s a fantastic book! It’s not about health/nutrition so not directly related to that topic as most books I share here are but it’s a great way to help you create better habits and systems in your life. You can read this article about motivation to get a little glimpse into his writing and to also help you with this topic we’re talking about today.

Now back to our systems - I will admit that this is easier said than done for some people. I am completely wired this way and creating systems and lists and following those is how my brain works. I do a lot of things in my life this way so it’s easier for me. My husband, on the other hand, probably couldn’t work from systems and lists to save his life. hahaha!! And I say that in the most loving way of course. ;) But seriously, it’s not a slam against him at all but just a difference in our personalities and how our brains work. So if you’re more like him, I get that it can be hard. You just have to figure out what works best for you. And if you have a spouse that is the opposite you can balance each other well!

I will share a few things that I do to help me stay on track. And trust me - I am not always perfect and I slip up and do things I shouldn’t but it’s okay. We all have our moments - the key is to jump right back in and don’t let that totally derail you. Don’t give up on creating a healthier life for yourself and think that all hope is lost because you splurged and ate a bad meal. ;)

So how can you get motivated and make it easier on yourself? Try these things:

  • Clean out your pantry and fridge and remove all food that is bad for you (food that is high in carb, sugary foods, sugary drinks, snacks that aren’t healthy, starchy foods, etc.)
  • Have a list of foods that are good for you to eat. Print out the list or have it handy on your phone so you can refer to that when you’re looking for something to eat.
  • Have a list of foods you should avoid so if you’re looking at something and you’re unsure you can check your list.
  • Eat at home as much as possible. When you go out to eat you lose control of how the food is prepared and you have no idea how they’re cooking it. It’s also much harder to find food that is a healthy balance of macros when you go out. If you do go out to eat, try to eat at places that have high quality food and choose a meal with a good macro balance. A good example would be a fatty cut of steak and a vegetable (like broccoli) with cheese, butter, or olive oil on it.
  • Make a menu for the week. If you have a plan and you don’t have to try to figure out something to make every time you get hungry you’ll do SO much better. Plan out breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even a snack if you feel like you need one between meals.
  • Meal prep. If you are limited on time during the week, if work or your commute keeps you busy for long hours, or if you have kids activities that keep you running - do as much meal prep on the weekend or when you have the most free time. Lots of people will get their meals all prepared and put in individual containers for the week so all they have to do is grab them and go.
  • Take advantage of intermittent fasting. We haven’t talked about this here yet but studies show that this is really beneficial. So if mornings are tough and you don’t always eat breakfast - that’s okay! Just make sure the other meals you have during the day are nutritious.

In addition to all of those things, I think one of the biggest things you can do to help yourself achieve this new lifestyle is to have a meeting with your family. If you have a spouse and/or children in the home, talk to them about the changes you’re going to be making. Present it in a way that just shows you’re going to try some new foods/meals and don’t tell everyone they’re about to go on a diet. ;) It truly is just a lifestyle change and not just a diet to try for awhile and then stop.

One of the biggest reasons people fail with this, in my opinion, is not getting their family onboard. This is a healthy way to live for everyone - kids included. Nobody should be living on high carb, sugary foods with little nutritional value. Do your family a favor and include everyone in this change. I know you don’t want your kids to grow up and have struggles with their health. If they don’t grow up addicted to carbs and sugar, you’re setting them up for SO much more success and better health in their future.

If you read the article I shared you’ll see that you don’t start with motivation - first you start and then motivation happens. When you start to feel better, when you start to lose that extra weight, when your doctor tells you your bloodwork looks great - those are the things that will motivate you to continue. For now you just have to start. So take these steps to make it easier for yourself and see what happens. :)