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Small Steps, Big Changes


Small Steps, Big Changes: How to Build Healthy Habits

We know that building healthy habits is essential for long-term health and well-being. Whether you’re trying to eat healthier, exercise more, or reduce stress, building healthy habits is easier than you think!

A goal is an aim or desired outcome. Habits are the behaviors that help you reach that goal. We form habits through a process called “habituation,” which involves a cycle of cue (anchor), behavior, and reward (celebration). Over time, habits become ingrained in our brains and are more difficult to break.


So, how can you build healthy habits that stick? The following tips, adapted from the book Tiny Habits by BJ Fogg, will help:

  1. Choose your goal: Having a goal will give you a direction to aim towards, and your habits will help you achieve it. Think of something you already want to do.
  2. Brainstorm behaviors that connect to that goal: These should be small, easy, and attainable tasks that you do every day at the same time. The easier and smaller they are the less motivation you’ll need.
  3. Find your “anchors”: Connect your new behaviors to something you already do. This is key to making your new behaviors possible, turning them into habits.
  4. Stay small: It’s OK to build on your newly established habits, but know that when an obstacle arises you can always come back to the smallest version of your habit.
  5. Celebrate your successes: This is instant gratification! You do your new habit and you immediately celebrate (this is an important part of hard-wiring the habit in your brain). You can high-five yourself, do a happy dance, pat yourself on the back…anything that makes you feel rewarded.
  6. Troubleshoot: If you find that your habits are not sticking take a moment to see where the issue lies. Is it your “anchor” moments? Is it your behaviors? Don’t stick with a recipe that isn’t working.

Here is an example.

  • Goal: Move more throughout the day.
  • Behaviors (future habits): Walk; do wall push-ups; stretch.
  • Recipes:

-After I feed my dog (anchor moment) I will walk to the corner and back.

-After I close the door of the car upon arriving home from work I will walk to the corner and back.

-After I turn on the coffee maker I will do three wall push-ups.

-During the commercial breaks of the show I’m watching I will do three wall push-ups.

-After I clock out for lunch I will do a few stretches.

-After I brush my teeth I will do a few stretches.



Looking for a healthy habit to add to your routine? How about regular chiropractic care! Can you get in the “habit” of scheduling a routine adjustment? With the steps above, you definitely can.

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