This newest topic will focus on becoming a goal setter! One of mine is to consistently post topics that will create conversations and fully integrate you into the culture of the Habits of Health! 😉 This marks my return. Hope you like it!
Here is an excerpt from an article from OPTAVIA’s very own Behavioral Therapist Nick Frye!
Psychological Barriers to Action – and How to Deal with Them
People who adhere to their weight loss and maintenance regimens achieve and sustain weight loss; pretty simple, right? If you stick to the plan, it works! However, many people struggle to do this. Is it lack of knowledge or lack of motivation or a lack of willpower? The most common psychological barriers are summarized by the acronym FEAR:
F = Fusion with Unhelpful Thoughts. Sometimes we’re so caught up in our thoughts that we aren’t even AWARE of them or that they dictate our behavior. We are allowing our thoughts to tell us what to do. When a person sets out to make a change, it’s normal for their mind to generate “unhelpful” thoughts like: I’m too busy, I can’t do it, I’ll fail, It’s too hard, and so on.. It’s a common misconception that our thoughts control our behaviors. They certainly influence our behaviors, but ultimately we have a choice. Becoming ‘fused’ with unhelpful thoughts throws us off-track.
E = Excessive Goals. If a person’s goals exceed their resources, they’ll either give up or fail. Necessary resources could include a person’s skills, ability, social support, time, money, and physical health. Setting goals that are too difficult or impossible will only result in frustration and abandonment.
A = Avoidance of Discomfort. The pursuit of goals that pull us out of the “comfort zone” almost always generates significant anxiety. This discomfort is inevitable when it comes to lifestyle changes. If we are unwilling to make room for that discomfort, then we will not take action.
R = Remoteness from Values. If a person loses touch with their values that underlie their goals – if it doesn’t seem meaningful or important to them – then they will lose motivation. Values can provide a deep motivation that helps to sustain the practice of new skills, or the pursuit of challenging goals, even when it’s difficult, tedious or anxiety-provoking.
So, how do we address these barriers? Well, the antidote to FEAR is DARE:
D = Defusion from Unhelpful Thoughts. The mind is a reason-giving machine, and as soon as we think about doing something that pulls us out of our comfort zone, it cranks out all the reasons why we can’t or shouldn’t do it. If we wait until the day when our mind stops “reason-giving” before we do the things that really matter in life… we’ll never get started. So, if fusion with reason-giving is a major barrier to action, then naturally we target it with defusion. This means separating or distancing ourselves from unhelpful thoughts, letting them come and go instead of being caught up in them. Defusion means noticing thoughts rather than being caught up in thoughts; and letting thoughts come and go rather than holding on to them. One of the simplest ways of separating from thoughts is to write them down. This helps a person to take a step back and see the thoughts for what they are: a string of words. Nothing more, nothing less.
A = Acceptance of Discomfort. This means making room for painful thoughts and feelings so we can do what matters. Asking, “Am I willing to feel some discomfort, in order to do what matters most to me?” If a person is unwilling to make room for the inevitable discomfort, they need to either connect with their values or set easier goals.
R = Realistic Goals. If your goals exceed your resources, you can:
1. Create a new goal to acquire those resources
2. Accept the limitations of your reality and change the goal to adapt in the best way possible.
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. If a goal seems too big, make it smaller. If walking for 30 minutes is too much, cut it back to ten. Ask yourself: “On a scale from zero to ten, where ten is ‘I’ll definitely do this no matter what’ how likely are you to actually do this?” If you score less than seven, best change the goal to something smaller and easier.
E = Embracing Values. If you are lacking motivation, reflect on why you’re doing this.
The desire is to move forward….always and in all ways! Would love your thoughts if something here resonates with you. I am keen to share this topic!
Rx-ercise – Dr. A’s Prescription!
Posted: 19 Apr 2017 08:00 AM PDT
Can’t nix that nagging neck or back ouch? Chances are you need a prescription for movement, not medication, a study in Arthritis Care and Research notes. Less than half of people with chronic pain surveyed were told to exercise – a proven remedy!!!
Let’s address a common misconception in the wellness industry:
A healthy lifestyle means setting aside time for exercise, yes, but it also means making Habits of Healthy Motion a part of your entire day, not just the half hour or hour that you spend lifting weights.
Just so there’s no confusion, scheduling time specifically for exercise is still important. You should aim to get at least 30 minutes of exercise activity a day (walking is a great place to start).
The problem is that even if you meet the recommended amount of dedicated exercise a day, it will still only take up, less than 2 percent of your week. That leaves a lot of time for you to be sedentary when you should be staying active and burning calories. In Dr. A’s Habits of Health, he divides these categories into Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (EAT; dedicated exercise time) and Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT; the motion that makes up the rest of your day).
NEAT is actually a much more efficient way to fight calorie creep and a more important contributor to energy expenditure. It’s also much easier to do—in fact you’re already doing it. With a little bit of planning, you can do it even better!
The goal is to make motion a near-continuous part of your day. This can be a challenge in a modern world where we have long commutes to work and may spend the majority of a workday parked at a desk, but it’s still possible to incorporate some of the steady activity that kept our hunter-gatherer ancestors fit and lean.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
Our days should be full of activity. Even if getting up from your office chair every hour doesn’t seem like a huge step forward, keeping that habit strong for months and months will introduce a wealth of motion to your life and will help to combat the many health consequences of a sedentary lifestyle.
So get moving!
Thanks, Dr. A….let’s rock some motion!!!!
A successful day starts with a night of sufficient rest.
A handy trick for parents and children is to set a consistent sleep schedule. This schedule allows the body to adjust and expect rest at certain times, making it easy to drift asleep on schedule.
Older children and adults need 7-8 hours of sleep every night, so think about what time you need to awake for most mornings and count back 7-8 hours. This should be your child’s “bedtime.” (Younger children need 9-12 hours every night.)
Sleeping is crucial to health so if you have any questions, I am all ears!
HOW ‘BOUT THIS?
I am really inspired by the following:
I am now and always will be inspired by those who have made a decision to move forward with their health! When we chat about their transformations, I am inspired by the new twinkle in their eye….or the return of their smile or the sense of accomplishment they feel after setting and reaching goal after goal after goal.
What has eyes, fins, is squared, and bright yellow with dark polka dots? It’s the boxfish! The boxfish can swim a distance of six times its body length each second. But its unsuspecting feat is more about aerodynamic qualities than strength. Interestingly, its cube like shape turns out to be a greater help, rather than a hindrance. The secret is its bony outer skin which gives it maximum strength with minimal weight. It’s unique appearance and construction enables it to maneuver outstandingly to protect itself from injury. In fact, that attribute is modeled for us in the auto industry in the way of safer, more fuel efficient, yet lightweight vehicles. When tested in a wind tunnel, the boxfish “model” slipped through the air far more efficiently than a compact car.
Although the boxfish may at first be clumsy looking, it is on the cutting edge of aerodynamic design for the most fuel efficient car ever.
Since nature is a most wonderful teacher, how does this almost comical little fish influence our lives, especially as we continue to our desired outcome of Optimal Health?
Well, I’m sure you’ll agree with me when I say that the boxfish is surely unique by virtue of its size, shape & color! Then there’s that ability to swim almost uncannily fast for its size – a special ability which is only shared by few creatures in the animal kingdom. Readily, we all must admit, we are all just as unique in size, shape & color, as well. We might not have fins, but we have arms and legs and fingers and toes…we have our fingerprints that tell each of our unique stories.
So what unique abilities do we have? Some of us know what our skills are. Perhaps we’re a woodworker, jewelry designer, a knitter of sweaters, a baker, a soccer mom or baseball dad, or perhaps we paint or write or teach others how to do these things. Even the smallest thing that is special about us makes us stand out, like the boxfish.
But the lesson here for us is how our unique characteristics, like those of the boxfish, qualify us for the task at hand. We are strong, but without being too tough. We are fast, but without rushing. We may even be curious to the casual onlooker, but we are not odd, or anti-social.
We may have developed a kind of strategy to out-maneuver our critics to keep ourselves from sustaining injury, like perhaps hurt feelings or a broken heart. But just like the boxfish, if we take inventory of all of our defining qualities, we find that we have in fact, become fairly skilled at slipping through our lives. Our own personal efficiency rating relies heavily on why we choose to use our carefully honed skills in such a manner.
Perhaps it’s time for us to turn those skills inward…to use all of that energy and competence to design a new life for ourselves. One where we are strong and proud….fast and efficient and accomplished…..happy and comfortable in our own skin and able to rise above the spontaneous critic. Perhaps it’s time for us to stroke the cutting edge of a new design for the most resourceful and efficient ‘us’ ever!
Succeeding at creating health can bring the kind of transformation which can produce the most unanticipated results. What was once only a passing thought or dream can become reality. It’s all right there for us…this incredible opportunity to walk, run, live and breathe where before there were aches and pains and sore knees and throbbing shoulders. Appropriate weight loss accomplished in a common sense and yet timely fashion will saturate us in self-confidence, where whatever our unique abilities are, we are fully able to express them, enjoy them and use them to benefit ourselves, those we love and perhaps the world that we swim in, just like the boxfish. Hang in there, and just keep swimming! We may be on the cusp of identifying our unique abilities.