Are You Ready to Start Living a Healthier Life?

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Updated January 30, 2015.

by David Junno Psy.D.

High cholesterol, high blood pressure, being over weight, along with smoking, are some of the leading contributors to heart disease. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for men and women in America. It is also the leading cause of work related disability.

Good News

High cholesterol, high blood pressure, and being overweight can be can be significantly reduced, and at times eliminated by making changes in our health habits.

Changing our diets and getting more physical activity are two of the most important things we can to do improve our long-term health.

Bad News

It is very difficult to get ourselves to change our health habits. Four out of five people who need to make these kinds of changes are not ready to do it.

The problem is- when faced with the need to make these changes, we tend to do one of two things. We dismiss or avoid the information that points to this change, because it feels to overwhelming to do. Or we jump into action before we have adequately prepared, and end up failing and getting discouraged.

What?s the alternative?

We need to learn more about how people make successful changes. In their book ?Changing for Good?, Prochaska, Norcross and DiClemente identify five stages people making a change.

1.Recognizing we have a problem. We need to know what the problem is in order to do something about it.

2. Making a decision to change. Here we need to convince ourselves of the importance of making the change.

3. Preparing. We need to have a good plan that addresses the obstacles of making the change.

4. Taking action. This is actually doing our plan. This requires supports being in place to make our efforts work.

5. Maintaining the changes we have made. It may take a few years before our changes become automatic and a normal part of our lives.

When we fail in our attempts to make changes, it is usually because we have not addressed an earlier stage, or did not move on to a later stage. We might have jumped into action before we?ve fully identified the problem, made a firm decision or adequately planned for the change we needed to make. Or we started making the changes but did not prepare to sustain our efforts overtime.

The bottom line is- we need to identify the stage we are in and work at doing what is necessary to move to the next stage. Successful long-term change comes from taking one step at a time.

To find our what stage you are in and what you need to do, go to: and take the Readiness Quiz


?The awareness that health is dependent upon habits that we control makes us the first generation in history that to a large extent determines its own destiny?
President Jimmy Carter

?In this age, which believes that there is a short cut to everything, the greatest lesson to be learned is that the most difficulty way is, in the long run, the easiest.?
Henry Miller

So make the changes that are going to make a difference to your health- when you are good and ready.

Remember, having the right diet and getting enough exercise will not only improve your health- IT WILL IMPROVE YOU LIFE.

Until next time,

Dave Junno Psy.D.

Dave Junno Psy.D. is a psychologist, coach and author of Lowering High Cholesterol and Reducing Your Risk of Heart Disease- READY OR NOT!
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