Does your husband stress you out with his ability to eat more fast food than you thought humanly possible? Is getting him to the gym a harder task than any you’ve been assigned at work? You’re not alone. It’s normal to worry, after all, he’s the love of your life. You can’t, however, force your husband to do anything he doesn’t want to. Let’s just get that out there. You can only give him nudges in the right direction. These tactics will easily help your hubby get on the track to a healthy lifestyle, no nagging involved.
Lifestyle, Not Trend
Don’t make a big show of trying to force him to change his ways, and don’t expect to change his or even your own habits overnight. Like New Year’s resolutions that get kicked to the wayside by February, an immediate overhaul won’t get you any results—and if it does, said results surely won’t be long lasting. Make gradual changes that you both can incorporate for years to come. Order weekly produce deliveries to make sure you have healthy options in the house, get rid of soda cans in your fridge, and start exercising slowly. Trying to do too much too quickly is overwhelming, and you’re more assured of long-distance health if you take gradual steps.
Maybe your hubby’s bad choices are found in common vices, like alcohol or cigarettes. Alcohol is a tricky one. Some reports claim a glass of wine a day keeps the doctor away (or something like that) while others claim that alcohol can only harm the body. If your guy enjoys a few beers after work, you’ll be hard-pressed to stop him—remember, you’re not changing him, just helping him reinforce healthier habits. One thing you can easily implement: simply don’t buy the beer. If he has to get up off the couch in the evenings to go grab a six pack from the store instead of being able to grab one from the fridge, his propensity for hops might waver a bit. As far as smoking is concerned, use any means necessary to help him quit this deadly habit. Whether it’s patches or support groups, encourage him daily. If he finds it impossible, at least have him try out an alternative, like an e-cig from NJOY that has nicotine but doesn’t contain tobacco—they’re supposedly 95 percent safer than normal cigarettes.
He Isn’t You
What might be a healthy meal for you may not be enough for him. As frustrating as it can be, guys’ bodies hold and use weight differently. He may stop eating fast food for two weeks and drop five pounds, while you might do the same and see no difference on the scale. We have to remember that men in general need higher levels of calories, so your plates may look different—but that doesn’t mean he’s not being healthy.
Commend Great Choices
Telling him what he shouldn’t do or eat left and right is sure to make him more averse to the changes you’re attempting to implement. Ordering him around is taken as a judgment, and no one responds well to that. Just like any other venture in life, honey works better than vinegar. Commend him when he makes excellent choices to help him integrate them regularly into his life. Even if the steps he is taking towards health are little, they’re still present. With time and effort, tiny choices can expand to positive, life-altering habits.
The Exercising Efforts
You can’t force someone to go to the gym. What you can do is ask him to help you in your endeavors. Ask your hubby if he would accompany you to your gym sessions to help encourage you. It will feel less like you’re forcing him to make a change, and more like you’re both contributing to a happier and healthier spouse. One study found that when wives met the U.S. government exercise recommendations, their husbands were 70 percent more likely to do the same. Many gyms like 24 Hour Fitness offer discounted family rates, so savings can also help you convince him of the utility of tagging along with you. Plus, exercise improves your mental health, and he’ll feel the benefits immediately.
The Power of Positive Thinking
The more positive you are, the more optimistic your hubby is likely to be. As you head into the New Year and hopefully healthier habits, make sure you’re tackling it with the best attitude possible. Your positivity will rub off on him and hopefully encourage him to meet new goals, including a healthier lifestyle.
Your spouse’s eating habits, exercise, outlook, and work habits all affect you, and yours affect them in turn. Do what you can to make your influence positive, and watch the returns come back to you.
This post is brought to you by Holly Tomlinson.