Healthy behavior change is a team sport! If you’re not accountable to anyone, it’s easy to slip and make excuses.
Be open about starting on the Blue Zones Life Challenge with your family, friends, and coworkers. If your colleagues know that you are cutting out foods like sweets and soda, they might bring you some nuts instead of a candy bar when they make a pit stop at the vending machine. The same goes for your family and friends when they are planning dinner parties or choosing a restaurant venue.
Extend your support team to social media and far-away friends. Share photos of your experiences or tracking sheets on social media. Or send a text at the end of the day to your buddy or buddies. Dan Buettner, the founder of Blue Zones, has been part of a daily email group from the Blue Zones Project in the Beach Cities, CA. For five years, he and his group have emailed each other their weight every day.
The world’s longest lived people chose–or were born into–social circles that supported healthy behaviors, Okinawans created ”moais”–groups of five friends that committed to each other for life. Research from the Framingham Studies shows that smoking, obesity, happiness, and even loneliness are contagious. So the social networks of long-lived people have favorably shaped their health behaviors.
Here’s how to make sure you stay on track:
- Get at least one friend, family member, or coworker to join you.
- If you’re part of a book club, team, or club, see if you can get the group to do the Blue Zones Life challenge with you.
- Tell people! Even if they are not participating, you are more likely to succeed with a public announcement of your goals.
“The people you surround yourself with influence your behaviours, so choose friends who have healthy habits.”Dan Buettner
- Join our private Facebook group to connect with fellow participants, keep you motivated, and remind you that everyone is in this for a better life no matter the speed bumps.
- Share photos of your wins, your meals, and your experiences on social media using #mybluezoneslife.
- Subscribe to the Blue Zones Meal Planner for personalized meal plans, food coaches, and grocery delivery (use the code LONGEVITY20 to get $20 off the yearly subscription)
- Follow Blue Zones on Facebook
- Follow Blue Zones on Instagram
- Follow Blue Zones on Twitter
- Read: “How Your Social Circle Can Help You Lose Weight“