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Making Positive Changes

Aug 17, 2007
We all know that certain lifestyle changes are good for our health. But, what some people may not realize is how difficult it can be to follow through with their decision. Unexpected roadblocks may get in the way, such as lack of family support or self-confidence. But, simply considering a healthy change is a step in the right direction. You even may be ready to take action right now. No matter where you are in the decision-making process, it can be helpful to understand how change evolves.

Stages of Change = Researchers have discovered that most people follow a similar pattern when making a change. Studies have shown that success is more likely if one moves through the pattern one step at a time.

1. Precontemplation - At this point, one has not yet decided to make a healthy change. They may not have all the information they need to weigh their options or, they may be hesitant because they were unsuccessful the last time they tried. To move forward, one needs to think about how changing their habits will benefit their life.

2. Contemplation - In this stage, it is common to put off making a decision. One is not quite ready to commit - but may consider it a possibility in six months. When one is stuck here, weighing the pros and cons of the change can help one take the next step.

3. Preparation - Change is on the horizon. One wants the transition to begin in the near future. Right now the person is researching the best ways to help that happen. It is important to tell your doctor or counselor about their plans so he or she can give you tips for going through with your decision.

4. Action - It is time to make the change! Having a set goal to be working towards for the next six months is very important. One may suffer a setback on occasion, so try to stay positive and listen to encouragement from friends and family.

5. Maintenance - This is when one has kept with their program for at least six months. This is a huge milestone! Setbacks are less likely to occur, but continue to avoid temptation. It is important to reward yourself for your success.

Keep in mind that change does not happen overnight. Patience is essential. Do not be afraid to ask for help or talk with a health professional when guidance is needed. Rarely does change take place without hitting a few barriers, but the important thing is to not to give up!
About the Author
Pj Germain
Affiliate-success.Org
the Executive Edge
Antique Refinishing Resources
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