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Making Behavior Change S.I.M.P.L.E. - Tips 2 & 3

Guess what! I was TODAY years old when I learned that by January 7th of each year 25% of people have already given up on their New Years' Resolutions. My friend, mentor and colleague Dr. Lauren Josephs posted this along with some other quite shocking statistics on her social media pages today.

Simplify Behavior is helping you make behavior change S.I.M.P.L.E. by giving you 6 tips throughout this month that are based in the science of Applied Behavior Analysis and proven to be effective. In our first post we learned that you have to START with the vision. Tips 2 and 3 are to IMPLEMENT with integrity and MEASURE your progress!

When I think of implementing with integrity I think of self-accountability and self-monitoring. Self-monitoring is an amazingly effective tool for behavior change that has two main components: measurement and evaluation (Loftin, Gibb, & Skiba, 2005). Tips 2 and 3 work well together because data collection and measurement of change are both part of the self-monitoring process.

Self-monitoring can take many forms. We are lucky to live in the age of amazing technology and apps that help you do just about anything. You want to measure your calories, food intake, and workouts? Try the MyFitness Pal app. I even found an app recently, Fabulous, that incorporates prompts reminders and positive feedback to help those who are amped about making behavior changes. Two other personal favorites of mine are the Bible app and the Insight Timer app. Within both of these you can get reminders, track your progress and get cool graphics that show your progress as well.

If you are not a super high tech person, maybe you just want to use paper and pencil and bullet journal your success. This has been a tool that I've used and I find it helpful as well. Ju

Self-monitoring takes advantage of a simple behavioral principle that you have seen repeatedly on my social media pages:

1. What you attend to is what will continue.

2. Behaviors that receive attention or acknowledgement in any form are behaviors that are strengthened!

Just the act of measuring one's behavior that is targeted for change and comparing it to the goal on a regular basis can result in lasting improvements to that behavior.

What tools will you use to track the goals you have set for this year? How will you implement with integrity and measure your progress? Let's get to it! You will NOT be a part of the 25% that gives up today. You can do it! I've got your back.

Stay tuned for the last 3 tips!

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