Research indicates that making real change happen has less to do with willpower and more to do with consistency, and the environment you’re dealing with. That’s why in apartment complexes, the people who live closest to the stairs are in better shape than those who’s apartments are closer to the elevators. People who use smaller plates eat less. It’s a matter of how you set up your circumstances and your brain’s expectations. Start simple. Don’t try to lose 75 pounds right away, or transform your finances overnight. Start walking, or drinking more water. Get involved in an exercise plan that’s fun to do.
Little things matter when it comes to change.
Consistency matters as well. I work out first thing in the morning, so I’ve trained by brain to think “workout” as soon as I get up. Also – break negative associations. If you eat junk food in the car, your brain starts to expect junk food every time you drive. If you always order that large tub of popcorn at the theater, your mind starts to associate popcorn with walking into the movies.
When you get to work – take the stairs. Train your brain to forget about the elevator.
In 2012 remember that it’s not about your lack of willpower. It about knowledge. Start retraining your brain, control your environment, and be consistent. Doing these little things will reap huge rewards over the year.