How to motivate your spouse

Learn how to motivate your spouse or loved ones into taking their health serious and losing weight.  

I see these questions everywhere:  How do I motivate my spouse to lose weight?  

How can I urge my spouse to take their health seriously?  And what can I do to encourage my family members to exercise and eat healthy? 

If you’ve tried to approach an adult about their weight and health, odds are it was not a positive experience.  Unfortunately, when it comes to adults that you love and wish they would work to improve their health, there is absolutely nothing you can do to affect or change their behavior.  

motivate your spouse

And to be honest, the more you push and force, and try to affect change, the harder your target will dig in.  Usually your attempts to inspire are met with dogged disregard. Some will take offense, deny, or even deflect your helpful advances.  

Motivate your Spouse.

So, what can you do?  You love these people and want them to have a long and fulfilling life with you.  And, you want them to have the highest quality of life while they are with you as possible.  If they have children, you want them to be with them for as many years as possible, and to ensure those years are rich with vitality and ability.

motivate your spouse

Do not despair, there are a few things you can do, and surprisingly they may have a lot bigger effect than you would think.  

Here are my suggestions for discreetly and indirectly encouraging and inspiring your loved ones to embark on a journey to wellness.

Lead by example.

This is hands down the biggest and most important factor towards affecting your family’s health and wellness.  Humans are designed to follow and model those around us, especially in our immediate family. 

Ever heard of the phrase, “monkey see, monkey do.”  I’m sure you’ve noticed it especially with your children, they will pick up your habits and mannerisms without ever having to teach them. 

Even with friends, notice how they will pick up certain phrases or words and you will of theirs.  It’s just what humans do, if we see someone doing well, we naturally want to mimic them.  

This is the key to causing change.  Be the example, lead by your own example.  Focus on yourself and building your healthy routine and habits.

Ultimately, what you do affects your spouse, children, family, and friends.  They will see that you’re making small easy changes and realize that it is doable.  

Once you really start to get some traction, you will inspire them to start making the same changes without ever having to force or confront them.

Small, incremental changes.

I’m not kidding when I say: start as small as possible.  A five minute walk, a couple minutes of stretching, or even just a half tablespoon of Coffeemate less start to add up over time.

Change only one habit at a time.  Don’t wake up one day with the intention of going to the gym for an hour, eating 1600 calories, and journaling for 30 minutes every day.  It may happen for one day, maybe two, but I guarantee anyone would burn out.

motivate your spouse

When motivating your spouse don’t overwhelm them.  Keep is simple, and as unnoticeable as possible.  Odds are it will be easier to stick to and result in long term results.

motivate your spouse

Cook delicious healthy meals.

If you’re making something healthy for yourself, so its important to share it with your spouse or loved one.  You don’t have to force them though, it’s important to let them discover their taste for foods on their own.

The easiest way is to just ask them to try yours.  That way they are not pressured to eat a lot, and can stop after the one bit.  

This was a big reason that I started expanding my own palette.  The more exposure overtime really does make you start to appreciate and enjoy certain foods.

Another great technique is to slowly change your current staple recipes.  Do you make a chili frequently, sneak a few more vegetables in.  If you make a heavy casserole or calorie dense pasta, just serve a slightly smaller portion.  I love because she has so many classic recipes that she’s reworked to be real food friendly.

And in the end, most people, especially men, will eat what’s available.  Even if what’s available may not be their favorite.  Try to keep easy and quick nutritious snacks available, and over time it will become a habit.

Don’t push.

Humans are stubborn.  We don’t enjoy being wrong, or being told what to do, especially with our daily habits or routines.  

When it comes to your loved ones and your spouse, it is so important to not push or force wellness and weight loss on your spouse. (Unless this is medically required, in which case you should do what your doctor says.)  

A lot of times the people we love don’t want to be pushed or felt like they’re tricked or led into something.  If you give them the space to observe and decide for themselves, they are far more likley to be committed over the long run.  

Be sensitive to whether they need or would even like encouragement.  A lot of people feel stress or pressure when they are complimented.  Try to let your spouse bring up their success or achievements.  At that point be sure to encourage and praise them.

Make it easy.

Keeping whole, nutritious food on hand is a great way to make it easy on your family.  Opt for real food and cooking at home and eating as a family as often as possible.  Studies show this one habit can significantly impact your health and longevity.

Making a family walk an evening habit is easy to incorporate, or even just a game of catch in the backyard.  Create rituals that involve physical activity, like walking to the store, or riding their bike home.

If you do need to have an important conversation with a loved one, especially your spouse, make sure to always come from a place of love and understanding.  

Do not critique them or their personality, but instead address the specific behavioral habits that you thing are detrimental.

When it comes to your family, you want them to be here with you as long as possible.  And you want them to be able to enjoy that time with you with the best quality of life possible.  

Leading your loved ones by example is the best way to teach and impact.  Sharing your healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be rude or forced.  By allowing them to learn and discover on their own, they are more committed and invested to their own health.  

When you start to change your lifestyle, odds are things will change for your family as well.  This is a good thing.  Spreading healthy habits and traits is the best thing you can give your spouse, children, and loved ones.