Conquering the stages of change

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Commentary by Kim Rockey

If resolution is a dirty word when it comes to changing a bad habit or creating a good one, you’re not alone. Let’s explore the mechanics of the readiness to change from the Transtheoretical Model of Behavior Change (Prochaska and Di Climente, 1988) and its effect on our decision-making process.

Stages of change include:

  • Pre-contemplation: not ready to exercise, not interested
  • Contemplation: thinking about making a behavior change
  • Preparation: doing something related to exercise, but not meeting guidelines
  • Action: meeting set criteria for less than six months (most susceptible to drop out)
  • Maintenance: Sustaining six months or more of exercise

You will move back and forth through these stages. It is helpful to have a coach or friend to help you get started. Beginning your workouts at the same time each day is beneficial. So is proper guidance, a solid set of skills and accountability – these elements will help you process through the changes. You will have some positive and negative thoughts, but the benefits outwiegh any negativity that might get in the way of creating a healthy habit.

These behavior change stages can be repeated and applied across the dimensions of wellness – and other areas of your life. Research shows applying these principles leads to less stress and better quality of life. You only get one body to use for a short period of time. We do not want to be a community of regretful people for the way in which we have spent our personal resources.

As you make changes for the better, your family, friends and co-workers will notice a difference. Let’s get started: 1) obtain credentialed, quality coaching; 2) set some attainable, objective goals with your coach; 3) set a consistent time and place to get started; 4) pick a safe atmosphere and get to work. You will never be sorry about the commitment if you do it in a smart way.

 

Kim Rockey is a trainer and owner at Indy Core Wellness & Fitness. She can be reached at KimberlyRockey@sbcglobal.net. With more than 18 years experience as a teacher, coach and trainer, she provides safe and effective exercise prescriptions for a wide variety of clientele.


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