I write this article in order to empower those who need the change, but do not know how to do it.
Sometimes we don’t even take the first step because our dreams, goals seem so overwhelming, so intimidating, and so unachievable that we give up before we even start. Surprisingly, all you have to do is to start, I mean to begin the process of change.
I remember the popular saying, “Life is a marathon, not a sprint.” I truly believe that the same philosophy can be applied when we’re attempting to make changes in our lives: job, weight loss or fitness level, healthy habits, and certainly when trying to build or change relationships.
The best advice I can give you is to start with baby steps. From my point of view this may be the simplest, yet the most effective strategy we can use, as consistency, and learning to build on small victories are the keys to success. A mini victory is a realistic, quickly-achievable, smaller portion of a larger objective. The reason this strategy works is because we are able to see tangible progress, rather quickly, so we feel a sense of accomplishment and are encouraged to move on to our next mini goal, using the small successes as stepping-stones to larger change.
When you start to consider your health goals as weight lost, be more fit, or achieve better health, it’s much more effective to set intermediate targets than to fixate on what might be a massive change:
- to lose weight, you need to eat fewer calories than you burn, I mean you need to cut calories. Only small changes to a person’s diet can cut the NEEDED number of calories and lead to a healthy and sustainable weight loss.
- if your goal is to lose 10 kg, set for beginning a mini-goal of losing 5 kg.
- start by changing the “snack ratio” in the house or in your office. Slowly and gradually start replacing unhealthy snacks with alternative choices, such as fresh fruits, yogurt, nu sugar peanut butter, oatmeal bars or peanuts.
- if your goal is to increase the level of physical activity you can start with small changes:
walking instead of driving, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, parking farther away from destinations and walking the remaining distance, standing more often at work, moving while watching TV etc
The main ideea is that you don’t have to dramatically change your life or spend a ridiculous amount of money on workout plans or programs that promise you a quick and miraculous weight – you just need to start moving. For example if you haven’t been active in several years years (or maybe never) start with 5 – 10 minutes of daily physical exercise (if you remember the exercises from your primary school – they are very efficient), and then gradually increase the intensity. Another suggestion would be to start walking for 15 – 20 minute around your neighborhood. All you’ve got to do is start moving at your own pace, adapted to your physical condition and to enjoy being active. Remember it s important to make lifestyle changes that you can actually stick to over the long term.
Going back to my tagline of Start by Starting and the change that involves Starting with babay steps I would like to emphasize that this strategy is useful in almost every area of life, and when trying to achieve nearly any goal. Just work towards one mini-victory at time and make sure you celebrate each achievement in some small way – a little success goes a long way in propelling us to the finish line.
Your journey can Start right now, no matter which is your resolution it should begin today, not tomorrow, not Monday or on January 1st!
No matter what your goal is, the important thing is that you Start today!
Start by Starting!