Reward yourself frequently with nonfood rewards. Place tally marks on a calendar, tokens in a jar, money in a piggy bank each time you accomplish a mini-step. Use the “if…then rule” i.e., “If I eat 5 servings of vegetables and fruits today, then (and only then) I will go to a movie tonight.”
Remember the motto: If you don’t like the way you are feeling, change the way you are thinking.
Team up with a friend – you’ll be much more likely to stick with your diet or exercise plan if someone is counting on you.
Join a gym, hire a trainer, participate in a support group, get involved in a healthy cooking class.
Surround yourself with reminders to eat well and exercise. Place your gym bag next to your desk at work, post a “When will you exercise today?” sign on the fridge, keep a bowl of baby carrots on your desk.
Identify your slip-prone situations, from negative thoughts to a change in routine, and plan ahead how you will handle them.
Give yourself credit for daily successes.
Visualize yourself ahead of time successfully handling food issues and social situations.
Recognize that changing habits will require an initial investment of time.
Focus on gradual lifestyle changes instead of dieting or weight loss.