How to Turn Health Goals Into Healthy Lifestyle Changes

GUEST POST by Sheila Olson,

How to Turn Health Goals Into Healthy Lifestyle Changes

We’ve all been there before: you wake up one day feeling motivated to make some big changes for your health. But all too often, the ambitious goals we make never really translate into any real action. The resulting feelings of disappointment can make you want to give up altogether on those goals. But with some simple tweaks, you can easily turn those healthy aspirations into long-term healthy habits. Here’s how:

Know Yourself and Your Motivations

When you set goals for your life, you really have to be thoughtful about your ability to achieve those goals. Your personality and current lifestyle choices can factor into your success, so give those elements careful thought. Realize that while the latest fad or health craze may work for your friends, it may not work best for you, and that’s okay! For example, if you’re an introvert that wants to become more active, pass on the social fitness trends, like barree or spinning, where you will be in contact with a big group of people. Instead, look for an activity like running or swimming that gives you time to introspect and reflect. Or you can enjoy the fresh air and clear your mind by going hiking (just make sure to take safety into account). On the other hand, if you’re an extrovert who tends to bail on the gym in favor of hanging out with friends, then signing up for those group classes could be a positive motivator to stay on track.

Identify a Clear Path Forward

Establishing a goal that aligns with your life and personality is only a portion of the work that goes into making long-term changes. Even the most thoughtful goals can fall flat when we don’t break them down into actionable steps. So after you’ve written out those smart goals, spend some time writing down some ways to achieve them.

When you’re crafting your action plan, start with small, short-term goals that will get you on the right track. Creating short-term goals that are easier to achieve can provide that self-esteem boost you need to keep powering forward with your healthy new routine. Short-term exercise goals can include spending an hour, or even a half hour, on your activity of choice twice a week. Want to eat healthier? Instead of restricting calories, try smaller changes like replacing simple carbs with complex carbs, or cut down on sugar. You can also take better care of your mental health because addressing depression can help with health and weight-loss goals.

Take that positive feeling you get from conquering those short-term goals and start building toward the bigger challenges. Those smaller steps are a much more sustainable path toward change. After all, you didn’t develop your unhealthy habits overnight, and you’re not going to change them overnight either, and that’s perfectly fine!

Learn From Your Failures

One of the hardest truths about changing your habits is this: You are going to feel like you’ve failed at some point. You may not reach your original goal in the time frame you’d hoped, but if you treat it as a complete failure, you will only feel discouraged and revert back to those old habits. Instead, allow for those small failures and know that you can move past them. So if you have that slice of cake at lunch, get back on track with a healthy dinner later. Don’t let one slip-up or treat turn into total defeat. Allow yourself to be human and to make those mistakes.

Make Progress, Not Perfection, Your Goal

Here’s the thing about your health: It really is a lifelong journey, not a short-term competition. If weight loss is your goal, you may lose 10 pounds that first month and only two pounds the next. But as long as you are staying on track with your habits and working hard, even those small successes should make you feel proud.

Dreaming about being healthier can be fun, but actually changing your habits to be healthier is even better. So if you really want to turn those dreams into action, sit down and come up with a plan, and know that it will take some real work to reach your goals. You can totally do this!

Image via Pixabay

Sugar and Weight Loss: How Sugar Affects Your Weight Loss Goals


Perhaps the biggest topic in health and wellness these days is sugar and how to cut back on consuming it. For ages, the average adult would add a spoonful of sugar here and there to food— it never seemed like a big deal. But over time, food manufacturers started adding sugar to just about everything in the grocery store, even foods that you don’t think of as sweet, like crackers and spaghetti sauce.

Today it’s clear that  sugar is linked to various illnesses and conditions, and it is likely a major culprit connected to the rise in obesity and weight gain in this country. The information below will  give some background on the sugar debate and suggest ways in which you can cut it out for good. More:

Do You Think Like a Thin Person?

Start thinking like a thin person and the rest will follow.

August 7th, 2018 is the 11-year anniversary of the day I began my weight loss journey. In a little over a year after that, I had lost 88 pounds. Since that time, I’ve kept nearly all of it off. I go up and down by 5 pounds now and then, but overall I feel 100% successful. A big reason is my faith. Another is my mindset. I made lifestyle changes that I maintain to this day. I DO think like a thin person and that spills over into my choices and activities. If I veer off course, I bring myself back before I go too far astray from my plan. “This isn’t me,” I say to myself.

Earlier today I read the following article at Web MD. I’d like to share it with you. If you’re interested in thinking like a thin person, click here.

Sid Korpi credits Thinking Skinny

Sid Korpi, film and stage actress, social dance instructor, and pet chaplain, is far too talented and accomplished for this author to take credit for

Actress Sid Korpi at 50th birthday

anything more than being an inspiration and catalyst for her recent weight loss, something she’d wanted to do for a long time. That’s good enough for me. Already athletic, fit, and beautiful, Sid became inspired after reading Thinking Skinny and decided to get healthier still. Losing those extra pounds gave her the edge she needed to pursue a film career with creative Minneapolis filmmaker, Christopher R. Mihm. I might also add that the same is true of the content in this article. Other than my questions, the words are Sid’s, and I would be remiss if I didn’t credit her as being co-author of this article. She is, in addition to the talents listed above, a gifted author and editor. I recently had a private interview with Sid, and this is how it went: Continue reading on

Holiday hints at the buffet for the heart-wise

The holidays are a particular challenge for those of us who know we must be vigilant every day to maintain our health through good eating. (Actually, that’s pretty much everybody.) Here are some of the challenges, and how to meet them.

The holiday party, with its buffet of delectable treats, many of them high-fat – cheese plates, crackers, cookies made with real butter, rich drinks such as egg nog – can be faced and handled by using some of the following tricks:

  • Drink a glass of skim milk before attending the party. It’s nutritious, filling, and will keep you from giving in and wolfing down too many hors d’oeuvres. And it’s great padding if you decide to have that one alcoholic drink you allow yourself at a party.
  • Bring a bottle of sparkling water with you, in case it isn’t available at the party. Fill your glass with this festive-looking drink, or dilute your one glass of wine with it, making two or more bubbly spritzers.
  • Station yourself as far away from the table as possible, so that you won’t be continually tempted by the sight and smell of food.
  • When you do approach the buffet, fill up on vegetables (easy on the dip) first; then select the richer “goodies.”
  • Decide in advance what you will eat, and how much of it. Want to treat yourself to a little bit of cheese? Pick the harder type of cheese (lower in fat). Try putting it on a vegetable, such as a celery stalk, rather than a cracker.
  • Avoid automatic eating by keeping your hands occupied with holding a glass (of the above mentioned sparkling water or spritzer) while you are engaged in conversation.
  • Don’t try to match the speed or amount that your partner is eating (easy to do), particularly if your partner is larger than you are. After all, would you put the same amount of fuel in a small compact car as you would a big SUV? No? Well, then…
  • Do mindful eating: savor each bite by leaving each one at the front of your mouth longer than you usually do. Then slowly let it move through your mouth, noting the point at which that particular food really stimulates your taste buds and enjoying it to the max.
  • If you don’t get a real thrill from a certain food, be willing to discard the rest of it uneaten. If you’ve looked the tray over and selected one brownie, be willing to get rid of it if you think it doesn’t taste like the best brownie the world (or at least you) has ever known.

In short, make sure the actual experience of the feast matches your anticipation by making mindful, better choices. You’ll end up not only healthier, but happier as you realize you savored the experience and at the same time maintained some control over your future.

Lynette Crane, M.A.(Psychology) and Certified Life Coach, has more than 30 years’ experience in the field of stress management. She currently works to provide stress and time pressure solutions to harried women, those women who seek “Islands of Peace” in their overly-busy lives. Visit her website at to see more in-depth articles and to view her programs.

Article Source:

The diet debates are over

Today, the diet debates are over. We have moved beyond the confusion of the low-fat versus low-carb battles to an expert consensus on what constitutes a healthy diet. Health-care professionals now agree that our focus should be on nutrient-dense, fiber-rich carbohydrates, healthy sources of unsaturated fats, low-fat dairy, and lean sources of protein, and this is reflected in the new USDA food pyramid. More:

Now I get it! Understanding triglycerides

Follow this link to  read a brief but important and easliy understandable article about Triglycerides.