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Daily Habits: Small and Meaningful Steps Add Up

Despite our best intentions, it can be a struggle to keep up with healthy behaviors. The first couple of weeks go well, then we either lose motivation or something throws us off track. Enter Daily Habits. It’s a new component of WebMD ONE that helps individuals set and track goals to improve their well-being. Blending the best of behavior change science, this new tool divides health goals into small, manageable steps to help individuals form lifelong healthy habits—from eating better, to coping with asthma, to keeping stress in check, and much more.

Based in the science of behavior change and user experience.

Daily Habits was built using a methodology that combines the best of multiple behavior change theories about how to help people form and maintain long-lasting habits. Developed in consultation with practicing physicians and members of our clinical advisory board, it includes the insights they’ve gleaned from working with patients on their health goals every day.

In addition to clinical input, we’ve leveraged the experience of our coaching staff and their 3.6 million coaching sessions. We also incorporated consumer insights from WebMD.com, a site visited by more than 79 million people every month.

Well-being is daily. Accountability takes time.

In a recent webinar our Medical Director, Dr. James Beckerman, noted that “80% of heart attacks are preventable by eating, moving, and living in a healthier way.” “But,” he went on to say, “the challenge is how we get there.”

Dr. Beckerman acknowledges that reaching health goals requires a constant, vigilant effort, which is hard to sustain without some type of external support. Daily Habits provides this support by helping users create an easy plan, visualize goal attainment, and track their progress. The tool also sends out reminders and gentle nudges should participants start to veer off course.

A program that is tailor-made for each individual.

What’s unique about Daily Habits is that it is not restrictive or prescriptive. At the outset of the program, users supply information on their health, personal interests, and current habits. In return, they receive a range of suggested activities that satisfy progress toward their individual health goals.

For example, if a user is working on getting more exercise, the tool will ask whether she’s completed cardio and strength training in a way that’s appropriate for her interests and skill level. Because the program is personalized with activities that the individual likes versus a generic recommendation, it’s easier to stay engaged.

Tracking progress is easy with Daily Habits.

Daily Habits is mobile-friendly, which means participants can keep track of their activities on the go. By clicking on “My Day” they can see the activities they need to complete in order to receive a check for that day.

They can also view their past progress and see what’s coming up in the next couple of days. The percent completion number in the middle of their screen serves as a helpful visual reminder of daily progress.

Real data on actual progress.

In contrast with other well-being tools that just measure clicks, Daily Habits takes information at the start and then again at goal completion.

For example, at the end of the Balance Your Diet Plan, a user might see the question: “Over the past four weeks, how often did you eat food containing high levels of sodium or saturated fat?” We can then compare this answer to their intake response, giving us real data on how participants have moved the needle in terms of their health.

Once users complete the outtake questionnaire, they are free to restart the program or choose a new goal to work on!

We’re excited about the potential for Daily Habits to make a real impact on our participants’ health. With tailored plans based on user-supplied health information and personal interests, Daily Habits makes it simple to stay engaged, make progress, and accomplish well-being goals. Learn more about our solution here.

 

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