1. Just take a walk
That’s it. Start with something you know you can accomplish: Go for a 30-minute walk after dinner. Don’t worry about speed; don’t worry about distance. Just walk. Go out 15 minutes, come back 15 minutes. If it’s not safe for you to walk at night where you live, do it on your lunch hour or some other time of day. What you want to do is create a habit. This is a very simple way to start training yourself to live differently. Ultimately, use these walks to segue into a more vigorous cardiovascular workout routine. This could be anything from more walking to running or working out on an elliptical trainer.
2. Upset your grocery cart
Our grocery store rituals are embedded in our psyches. We’re all always grabbing the same stuff—it’s one of the hardest habits to break. If the same stuff were always, say, broccoli, carrots, strawberries, fish, whole-grain bread, a bag of beans, and almonds, that habit wouldn’t be a problem. But you know and I know it’s not. Do your regular shopping and choose the things you usually do. Count how many packages are in your cart versus the number of produce or meat/poultry/seafood bags (frozen food bags only count if you have healthy frozen fruits and vegetables or lean sources of protein like fish in them). Write it down. Twenty-five packaged goods, three bags of fruits and vegetables, one bag from the poultry department, whatever. The next time you go to the market, shift the balance. If you have 25 packaged goods, try to get it to less than 20 items. The next time, get it to less than 15 packaged items. Before you know it, you will have totally transformed your kitchen without even trying.
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3. Turn “I can’t” into “I can”
There are two types of people. Those who say they can and those who say they can’t, and both are right. You’re about to gradually become an “I can” person. Start counting how many times a day you either say out loud or to yourself “I can’t.” It doesn’t have to relate to eating or exercise. Maybe you say things like, “I can’t finish all these dishes tonight, I have to go to bed,” or “I can’t face looking at the want-ads even though I know I need a new job.” It could be anything, big or small. Just count how many times you stop yourself from doing something because you don’t think you’re capable. Tomorrow, start replacing one of those “I can’ts” with “I can.” If you counted seven “I can’ts,” knock it down to six. Reduce the number the following day, then again the day after that. Train your brain. You think you can never avoid the cupcakes they bring in for birthday parties at work? Try it. Tell yourself, “I can avoid them,” then watch yourself succeed.
Here are the 12 Habits of Highly Confident People!