Making changes to habits that have taken a lifetime to form is hard work. It's far from easy. The key is to be patient and consistent. Assume that you will have a few hiccups along the way but you should not let that derail you from your path. Its known to take at least 21 days to form a new habit and forget about the old ones. Expecting to go from 0 to 100% in a matter of days is so silly. Allow yourself time and quit with the unrealistic expectations. Expect to go two steps forward then one back, two forward then one back until you really find your feet and rhythm in your new way of living. Consistency will win over perfection. Aiming for perfection will set you up for failure because there is no such thing and you will be so disappointed when you don't achieve that.
So where do you start?
Set small goals and celebrate them.
Set yourself small goals every week and be sure to celebrate it when you stick to your goal. For example; "This week I will exercise three times". Even though it may seem like very small steps, all of these very small steps will one day add up to one big one. Its these small steps done consistently that will help you form your new habits.
Tell everybody about what you are doing and your big goal.
I don't know about you but I have integrity and when I say I'm going to do something I do it. If you tell everyone about what your doing it will be a bigger deal to stop then it would be to continue. This is a great way to keep yourself accountable for the times where you may fall off the wagon.
Understand your triggers.
Become more self aware. Try to understand what triggers you to make choices that are not healthy. Next time for example you head to the pantry late at night for a snack in front of the t.v ask yourself. Am I just eating out of habit? Am I really hungry? Have I had a rough day and looking for some comfort? Once you can understand your triggers you can go about putting the appropriate steps in place to help change this behaviour.
Influence your circle of friends or get new ones (just kidding).
It's so hard to make changes when your group of friends like to eat junk food all the time, go out drinking and not exercise. It can put you in an uncomfortable situation and believe it or not it can actually make them feel uncomfortable around you. Try to suggest activities that revolve around being active or exercising. The more people that you have around you on the same path as you the easier it will be for you to make the change.
Change takes time. Both physically and mentally. Don't give up just because it is to hard or you don't seem to be getting anywhere. If you want to make the change bad enough nothing and no-one should be able to stop you. Period.