Get Your Partner Healthy

In many relationships, one person has adopted a healthier lifestyle and desperately wants his/her partner to hop on board too. But the more one nags about eating better, exercising more, eating less, or working less, the more these good intentions become a contentious subject in their relationship. Here are some tips to get your partner healthy:

Uncover Why. Learn the root cause of why they are snacking on sweets and junk food, eating too much, or never exercising. Is it because they are stressed at work, can’t find time to exercise, or need your support in other areas? Resolving the real problem will lead to decreased emotional eating, for example, or help remove barriers.

Show Them Benefits. Instead of nagging, show them by example. Show them that your healthy lifestyle has resulted in more energy, weight loss, and more balance and happiness. This will win them over much better than telling them what they “should” do. When we hear “should”, most of us automatically resist and do the opposite.

Focus on Their Positive. Focus on all the good things they are doing right. My clients can’t wait to tell me what they’ve done wrong but once I point out their successes, they realize that being healthy really isn’t that hard. It’s when we aim for perfection that we fail. Don’t aim for perfect. Enjoy life, enjoy food but enjoy real food.

Encourage Baby Steps. Bad habits are difficult to break. Take your time, go easy on yourself, and encourage your partner to take baby steps. Tiny changes add up to giant ones over time. Add 10 minutes of walking per day, have one vegetarian meal a week, eat a little slower, drink a glass of water in the morning, etc.

Focus on Pleasure. Those who focus on feeling good are more likely to succeed than those who adopt a healthy lifestyle to lose weight or to fight diseases. We are emotional and sometimes irrational beings so scare tactics don’t work. Help your partner focus on things that make them feel good.

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