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Small Changes Can Build Healthy Habits in The New Year

Free resources and tools available from Shape Your Future

OKLAHOMA CITY (Dec. 28, 2021) – This New Year, Shape Your Future, a program of the Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET), encourages Oklahomans to build healthy habits through small changes in everyday routines. Instead of setting resolutions without a plan to achieve them, create and maintain healthy lifestyles by changing one habit at a time.

“Unrealistic New Year’s goals can be overwhelming and hard to achieve," said Julie Bisbee, TSET Executive Director. "Try making a small change each month, like eating more fruits and veggies or getting up ten minutes earlier to do some easy walking around the house. Small changes add up to you feeling better and more energetic. Ultimately, this helps you and your family live a healthier life.”

The top two reasons the majority of New Year’s resolutions fail are because the goals are too big and feel unattainable, and there is no accountability structure to help maintain and track change.

Small changes harness positive momentum and build over time to create long-term healthy lifestyles. Follow Shape Your Future’s 5-Step Guide to build an action plan. Then, track healthy changes on the Healthy Habits Rewards Card.

Easy ways to incorporate small healthy changes into your everyday schedule include: 

Drinking water instead of soda (or other sugary drinks)
Moving during TV commercial breaks instead of sitting still
Taking walks throughout the day or as a family
Cooking healthy meals together as a family with the kids involved, like Veggie Stir Fry
Snacking on carrots and hummus instead of chips and dip
Quitting tobacco

In 2019, Alex, a 31-year-old marketing professional, and her family were featured in a testimonial for Shape Your Future. Alex realized she needed to be healthier for herself and her family. By making small changes, like taking the stairs, planning ahead for meals and eating healthy snacks, Alex saw her health transform. Her story is a perfect illustration of how to start a health journey one step at a time for success.

“As we adjust to building a healthy lifestyle with our two kids, this New Year my husband and I plan to include two walks around the neighborhood into our weekly routine,” Alex said. “I am looking forward to meal prepping shredded chicken with veggies to serve in sandwiches, salads or tacos. It will make packing healthy lunches easy and efficient during the week.”

Healthy lifestyles go beyond nutrition and exercise. Shape Your Future also encourages tobacco-free lifestyles for teens and adults. Make quitting tobacco your New Year’s resolution and celebrate daily quit-attempt victories through small steps that lead to powerful changes.

Adults wanting to live tobacco free can register with the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline for FREE plans to quit tobacco products. Pick the level of free services that is right for your quit – including FREE patches, gum or lozenges. Register for the Helpline online (OKhelpline.com) or call 1-800-QUIT NOW.

For Oklahoma teens ready to break free from addictive vapes and other tobacco products, check out My Life, My Quit or text “Start My Quit” to 36072 to register for free and confidential services to help you quit how you want and when you want.

This New Year, join Shape Your Future in exploring the power of making small, healthy changes to food and activity habits, one step at a time, to live a healthier, happier 2022.

For a complete list of healthy lifestyle ideas, resources and dozens of easy, low-cost recipes, visit ShapeYourFutureOK.com.

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Shape Your Future is a community health education intervention that encourages Oklahomans to eat better, move more and be tobacco free. SYF strives to educate parents, teachers, caregivers and all Oklahomans on how to make the healthy choice the easy choice. Find us online at ShapeYourFutureOK.com.

The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline is a free service for Oklahomans wanting to help themselves, loved ones, patients or employees live tobacco free. Funding is primarily provided by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust, in partnership with the Oklahoma State Department of Health, Oklahoma Health Care Authority, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline has served more than 470,000 Oklahomans since 2003 and has been ranked among the top quitlines for reaching tobacco users seeking treatment for the last 10 years by the North American Quitline Consortium.

My Life, My Quit is a free program to help Oklahoma teens, ages 13-17, quit tobacco and e-cigarettes. By offering free live texting, web chat and phone calls, My Life, My Quit supports teens through the steps of quitting tobacco. Funded by the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust, these free services for Oklahoma teens can be found at MyLifeMyQuit.com or by texting “Start My Quit” to 36072.

The Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) serves as a partner and bridge builder for organizations shaping a healthier future for all Oklahomans. TSET provides leadership at the intersections of health by working with local coalitions and initiatives across the state, cultivating innovative and life-changing research, and working across public and private sectors to develop, support, implement and evaluate creative strategies to take advantage of emerging opportunities to improve the public’s health. To learn more, visit TSET.ok.gov