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3 myths of health behavior

An array of mistaken assumptions has slowed adoption of science based approaches to improving health behavior.

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Changing health behavior isn’t simply about willpower, sticking to a schedule or following a plan.

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Changing health behavior is hard work, whether it means losing 10 pounds, exercising 30 minutes a day or managing the day-to-day challenges of a chronic health condition such as diabetes or back pain. It’s a sad fact that more people fail to meet their goals than succeed.

Human resources leaders know this better than anyone, having seen the mixed results of employee health programs in recent years. The numbers have only compounded the problem: Many employers have developed an underlying bias that workers suffering from chronic health issues are unable to do what’s necessary to live healthier lives. They lack the motivation and willpower, the thinking goes, to change behavior.

"Much of our behavior isn't rational at all, but driven by automatic responses to environmental and social cues that require little cognitive engagement."

-Mike Kelly, Professor at the University of Cambridge

Lasting behavior change requires approaches that are strikingly different from those found in most wellness programs and employee health plans.

Learn the biggest myths and realities of behavior change, and how to choose the best solutions for your workforce.