Health Advice Paula Owens

To achieve any goal, whether it’s losing body fat, living a healthier lifestyle, relocating to a new city or changing careers, it starts with a conscious shift in mind set and being intentional.

“There is always a period of inner work before change and transformation occur. The greater the outer change one wishes to manifest, the greater the inner change that must be made first. Serious intention and desire to change requires emotional motivation. “BE” that thought, “DO” that action and you will “HAVE” inevitable transformation.”

12 mind set solutions

1. Start with your value system and write down your top values. Prioritizing values is an initial step that opens the door to transformation and lasting change.

2. Keep a journal to record your goals and intentions. Review them daily. The act of writing and journaling is very powerful in creating a positive outcome for long-term success. Create a vision board, which represent your dreams, your goals, and your ideal life.

Studies show an 80 percent success rate for those who follow through by writing down their goals. Be intentional. The greater the outer change or physical change you wish to manifest or experience, the inner change or emotional change must be even greater. Serious intention and desire for personal growth, losing body fat, or achieving any other change or goal requires emotional motivation.

3. Start with two simple, healthy changes each week and add two more each and every following week. Ultimately, small changes over time are very profound and doable without creating overwhelm, and subtly change your old, sabotaging habits into new and healthier ones.

4. Be prepared. Have a plan. Set up your environment at home and work to minimize and reduce temptation. Remove unhealthy foods from your home and replace with healthier options.

5. Fat loss is contagious, and so is weight gain, negativity and success. Surround yourself with like-minded people who support your healthy lifestyle. This may mean dissolving certain relationships and environments that sabotage your choices and are no longer in alignment with your vision and intention. Share your goals with family and friends. Hire a coach, find a mentor or attend a class.

6. Break out of the negative mind set. One of the keys to breaking this habit is to act in spite of. Each time that you act regardless of your feelings, fears, worries or doubts, you are reinforcing the habit. This allows you to confront bigger challenges and obstacles no matter what area of your life.

7. Avoid quick-fix, starvation diets that are not conducive to a healthy lifestyle. The end result of dieting cause a damaged metabolism, hormone disruption and result in extra weight once the dieting ends. Realize that you cannot exercise your way out of a bad diet.

End the thought process of exercising more and eating less (a metabolic disaster), and alternatively adapt a lifestyle mind set. Focus on nourishing your body with real food so you think clearer and feel better.

8. Become conscious about the importance of other principles in addition clean eating to experience the healthiest version of yourself. Functional factors in a healthy lifestyle equation include hormone balance, sufficient sleep, stress management, eliminating foods your body is sensitive to, an intelligently designed exercise program (not too much and not too little), healthy gut function, correcting nutritional deficiencies, self-love and worth, and periodic detoxification.

9. Let go of comparing yourself to others. This only leads to frustration and self-loathing. The perfect solution that worked for your sister, your friend or your trainer may not work for you. Your biochemistry can cause you to metabolize fat differently than your friend even though you both followed the exact same program. Determine what works for you.

10. Break out of old patterns. When you’re feeling anxious, fatigued or stressed out, instead of turning to food as your go-to remedy, walk your dog, practice yoga, meditate, talk with a friend, light some candles and take an Epsom salt bath, listen to your favorite music or a personal growth CD, write in your journal or read something spiritual. Problems aren’t solved with mindless eating.

11. Own your choices. Stop the excuse and blame mentality. Be honest with yourself. Losing weight (and keeping it off) and creating the healthiest version of yourself is about consistently making healthier choices 90 percent of the time so it becomes your lifestyle.

12. Patience! Take it one day at a time. Be consistent. Value and focus on the positive progress you have already made along your journey toward health. Realize that setbacks may occur during the process. Resume your intention and focus on getting right back on track. Have a sense of gratitude. See your transformation as progressive — a journey vs. perfection. Believe in yourself. Love yourself.

• Ahwatukee Foothills resident Paula Owens, M.S., is the author of two books, “The Power of 4” and “Fat Loss Revolution.” She is a nutritionist and fitness expert with more than 25 years of experience, and creator of “21 Days to a Leaner, Healthier You,” an online exercise and fat-loss program. Visit Paula at

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