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How to Stick to Healthy Habits When you just Don’t Feel Like It

shrug1This morning my teenage daughter let me have it.

I said, “I hope I never stop practicing the guitar. I really enjoy it. It’s a nice, therapeutic diversion.”

“Then don’t quit, Dad,” she responded. “I don’t get it. Why would you ever quit something you enjoy that’s good for you? Just keep playing every single day. Why would you even think about quitting?”

I agreed. It’s true. It would be silly to quit. And it got me thinking about why people sabotage the good things in life. Of course, I’ve written a short book about self-sabotage. The topic is a favorite of mine.

What I realized…

Today I realized that relatively brief moments of ‘not caring’ throw us off track.

We all know healthy habits like exercising, eating right, meditating, studying and so forth…they’re good for us.

Why would people simply quit and start doing unhealthy things that ultimately make them feel miserable?

• Sitting on the couch instead of exercising. (You’ll feel disappointed in yourself later.)
• Chowing down tortilla chips instead of crisp veggies. (You’ll feel crappy later.)
• Surfing the internet instead of working. (You’ll feel like a loser later.)

Why? Because in those moments, you don’t care. What was important is no longer important. And it won’t be important again until you feel bad about yourself for screwing up.

How to overcome this?

In your moments of not caring – when you feel like doing something lazy or self-indulgent instead of what’s best – just fast forward in your mind to the point when you know you’ll care again.

Imagine going through the rest of your day on your present course…until you get to the point where you know you’ll care. If you’ve kept your promises to yourself, you’ll feel great. If you’ve let yourself down, you’ll be regretful. Feel that regret now. It just might motivate you to avoid the pain that will surely come if you don’t get yourself together and make a smart choice.

If you can get yourself to care even a little, then doing this mental exercise may help push you to sustain your healthy habits.

How to Stick to Healthy Habits When you just Don’t Feel Like It

Mike Bundrant

Mike Bundrant is the author of Your Achilles Eel: Discover and Overcome the Hidden Cause of Negative Emotions, Bad Decisions and Self-Sabotage and co-founder at The iNLP Center which offers online certification in Neuro-Linguistic Programming and life coaching.

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APA Reference
Bundrant, M. (2015). How to Stick to Healthy Habits When you just Don’t Feel Like It. Psych Central. Retrieved on September 22, 2020, from


Last updated: 18 Dec 2015
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