In addition to the lesson outline we also discussed how it would be helpful to use the sentence, “ If ________, then ________” For example, “If I eat this piece of cake at lunch, then I will have a salad for dinner or exercise an extra 20 minutes today” or “If I work hard and do this 20 minute aerobic video, then I will reward myself with some relaxing time watching T.V. or reading” The idea is to think about it in the sense of “If I make this healthy choice, then how can I reward myself?” Or the opposite way where you can say, “If I indulge (give into temptation) on this unhealthy item, then how will it affect my long term goal of being healthy? Is it worth it? Or can I make up for it with something healthy?”
My participants can identify the healthy option, but the hardest obstacle they have identified has been the motivation to actually make that healthy choice and engage in the healthy behavior. By using this line of thinking and saying this “if-then” sentence, it will hopefully help them be able to negotiate their wants and needs towards accomplishing their wellness goals.