Each of us can do something to improve our physical health. It might be increasing our fitness level with more exercise or maintaining a healthy weight by being more mindful of what we eat.
Yet change can be intimidating. It's hard for many to adapt to the constant change in our world. It's harder still to initiate positive changes in our own behaviour.
One reason is the comfort of inertia. Even if we're not totally happy with the way things are, it consumes more energy to make an effort.
Another is the seemingly overwhelming chasm between where we are and where we'd like to be. It's difficult to see yourself in the future with washboard abs when looking down now you can't even see your toes.
Becoming a non-smoker may seem impossible if you're smoking two packs per day. Going to the gym five days a week is an incredible leap when walking to and from the car is a 20second workout.
So even when we see the value of making positive changes in our lives, we hesitate and hold back.
To reduce the intimidation of a significant goal, break it down into more doable goals.
It will be like eating mini donuts; before you know it, you've consumed more calories than those of a full-sized donut even if that wasn't your goal.
So take that first little step towards the place you'd like to be. Visualize the person you want to be. Try out a small change this week, see how you feel and then decide where you'll step next.
If your goal is to eat a healthier diet, think about a small change that you could carry out every day for the next week. If you haven't been eating enough fruit, pack three fresh fruits in your bag for school or work.
If you've been buying fast food for lunch each day, plan your meals for the week and make the next day's lunch each evening.
Make your whole wheat sandwiches with lean white meat or fish, tomatoes, lettuce, low-fat cheese or whatever will make it tasty and interesting for you. You could also mix a fresh salad each morning.
If snacking is the Achilles heel of your diet, for one week, stock up on celery and carrot sticks with a low-fat dip or a variety of fresh fruit.
The increasing feelings of wellbeing, self-control and empowerment will motivate you to take further steps towards a healthier you. Positive change always begins with the small steps.
Dr. Davidicus Wong is a physician and writer. You can read more on his blog, davidicuswong.wordpress. com and listen to his Positive Potential Medicine podcasts at wgrnradio.com.