Getting past “Stuck”: Strategies for Embracing Healthier Behaviors

Chronic Health Wisdom for All
February 28, 2024 by
Cheri Sacks RN, CDCES

Starting on the path toward better health can seem like a daunting task. It's perfectly normal to feel frustrated, scared, and overwhelmed. These emotions can often prevent us from taking action towards change. However, there are strategies that can help you overcome these feelings and empower you to work towards achieving your health goals.

Many times, when people are advised to change a habit, they tend to resist or disregard the fact that they need to make a shift. This is because change can be intimidating, and they are comfortable with their current routine. At other times, they might be busy in their daily lives, and the switch may not seem significant enough to invest time in. In either case, the bottom line is that starting something new can be challenging. It is normal to feel this way! Health coaches use the term "precontemplation" to describe the process of individuals becoming accustomed to the notion of needing to change. And yes, you can get past this "stuck" feeling! 

During this stage, you may not even recognize the need for change. It is not uncommon to justify your current patterns and disregard the consequences of the behavior. You may even fight with people who suggest a change may benefit you.  

Support for Change in Behaviors!

Health Coaching at It's Best!

Contact Us

Strategies for Overcoming Precontemplation:

  • Cultivate Awareness: The first step towards improving your health is to become more aware of your current behaviors and their impact. To do this, you can gather information about your current condition and explore ways to make positive changes. You can also seek input from friends, learn from their personal experiences, and take time to reflect on your own feelings honestly.

  • Foster Empathy and Understanding: It's important to seek support from individuals who can relate to your current situation. You should look for people who show empathy rather than judgment towards you. Such people will be able to understand the reasons for your resistance to change and can open the door to meaningful and trusting conversations about why change may be important.

  • Highlight Benefits: Talking openly about both the pitfalls and the benefits of adopting healthier behaviors can be a powerful motivator. Highlighting the positive outcomes, such as improved physical health, increased energy levels, and enhanced overall well-being, can inspire action.

Strategies for Transitioning from Precontemplation to Starting Your Goal

Once you have accepted that change is necessary, the next step is to contemplate what the change will involve. This stage involves considering the possibilities of change and setting a foundation for success. It is a significant step because you begin to envision your desired outcome and think about how your life will change once you start taking action toward your goal. Although you haven't taken any major action yet, contemplating the change is an important step toward achieving your desired outcome.

  •  Set Realistic Goals: You have to think you can achieve it before you can start it. Set realistic and achievable goals. Breaking down larger objectives into smaller, manageable steps can make the process feel less daunting and increase the likelihood of success. 

  • Explore Options: It's important to try different approaches to healthy living as what works for someone else may not work for you. Finding what resonates best with your lifestyle and preferences is key.

  • Seek Support: Seek support from friends, family members, or health professionals. Having a supportive network can provide encouragement, accountability, and guidance throughout the journey towards better health.

  • Practice Self-Compassion: Change is rarely linear, and setbacks are a natural part of the process. Practice self-compassion and kindness towards yourself, especially during times of difficulty or frustration.

Chronic Health Wisdom- Alternative and Holistic wellness.

Chronic Health Wisdom: Changing, One Step at a Time

The path to adopting healthier habits begins by acknowledging the need for change and progresses through various stages of acceptance. By cultivating mindfulness, fostering empathy, and considering alternatives, individuals can break free from being stuck and move towards a healthier and more fulfilling life. It's important to keep in mind that the journey toward improved health may not be simple, but with determination, perseverance, and support, it is achievable.

Cheri Sacks RN, CDCES February 28, 2024
Share this post