Motivation is the key to long-term behaviour change. If you are going to become more active then there will be times when you really don't feel like exercising. This is especially true for the winter months, when lack of motivation can be a real problem.
Here are a few simple psychological ways in which you can increase your motivation. Click on each link for more information:
The best way to keep active is to do something that you enjoy doing. There are thousands of ways in which you can exercise. Of course, enjoyment is a very personal thing, so it's important to find something that suits you.
Remember - most people don't enjoy exercise immediately; it takes a little time before you can feel the benefits.
Looking to the future (goal-setting) and the past (tracking progress) can be a very effective way of keeping motivated.
Make sure your goals are easily achievable. Setting yourself an unrealistic goal will only de-motivate you when you fail to achieve it. The sense of achievement from completing multiple realistic goals will help keep you motivated.
If you think of exercise as a chore, or as something you have to psych yourself up to do, then it is quite likely that you won't stick to it. One of the most helpful things you can do is to make a habit out of activity.
Once you have gotten to the stage where climbing the stairs is a habit, you don't think about it - you just do it. Motivational problems will rapidly disappear as you become less conscious of the effort that is required.