Chef Ellen


Constructing, Changing, and Focusing on HABITS

Time and the concept of the new year often serve as symbolic markers that can influence individuals to reflect on their habits and consider making positive changes. 

Habit: a settled or regular tendency or practice, especially one that is hard to give up.

When we don’t give ourselves adequate time to reinforce the behaviors that support affirmative change, frustration typically follows with feelings of weakness and shame.

Gut Driven and The Reset 90/10 program encourage progress, not perfection, and momentum to find habits that generate a person that flourishes in a world bombarded with ultra- processed foods, magic pills, and injections that will never develop the ability to get to know their bodies in a way that thrives, age gracefully, and attaches kindness to the fear of change.

Below are several frequently asked questions by those looking to make sustainable change. Becoming open to appropriate shifts is a big part of supporting new habits. Adapt and expand on these inquiries based on the specific context and nature of the change you are considering.

How long does it take to form new eating habits?

It’s essential to recognize that breaking a pattern involves more than just the passage of time. Successful habit change often requires a combination of factors. Twenty-one days is an adequate timeline to streamline change, but the duration depends on factors such as individual differences, the complexity of behavior, and the level of commitment. I prefer a more lenient approach and favor progress, not perfection, as a successful stepping stone required to establish or break a habit. My 21-day reset presents as a jump-start of mindfulness and awareness. This foundational approach defines establishing goals and identifying triggers that often sabotage one’s best efforts. With a more sympathetic and supportive approach, maintenance and overcoming discouraging scenarios become effortless when focusing on progress rather than strict adherence.

What is the best way to start when you want to change your eating habits?

Small steps lead to giant strides. As we are all unique in physiologies, what works for one may not work for another. Try to sidestep the dieting mentality and look for gains with whatever goals you set. The desire to make affirmative change requires ongoing effort and dedication, but your chances of succeeding increase when you prioritize your health and seek support for accountability (whether from a friend or professional). If you want to enhance your health, kick off with a strategy. For example, if clean eating practices are high on your goal list, start with a meal plan, clean out your pantry, eliminate tempting foods, and create a space where your goals are supported. When you understand and accept that change takes time, advancement with new methods and skills is an opportunity for growth and a solid foundation of sustainable habits. 

How do you overcome challenges that may crop up as you form new eating habits?

Pay attention. Awareness of what you eat and how it makes you feel is crucial. Be present and listen to your body as becoming more connected to how you feel after a meal reinforces behaviors and supports new habits. Consistency and regularly practicing the desired behavior contribute to habit formation. As life has it, it’s expected that one indulges and goes off the rails occasionally and subsequently gets discouraged, but when a solid groundwork is established, your chances of bouncing back come with ease. Learn from your setbacks and see them as an occasion to practice self compassion, not shame. Whooping it up occasionally should bring you joy because one has that safety net of preferred habits to return to the next day, after vacation, or during times of celebration. Becoming flexible with your new and improved mindset will not only create sustainable habits but will allow the celebration of those small and substantial victories along the way.

Ensure that your new and improved habits prioritize your physical and mental well-being, such as exercise, meditation, and quality sleep. Whether your goal is to break a habit or start forming newer, revised ones, recognize that the habit-forming process is gradual. It is essential to be patient and to celebrate successes. Revisit these new milestones periodically and adjust as needed.

Healthy Habits Chef Ellen