I have written about new year’s resolutions before. I have suggested that you should not make any (the old blog post is still there under ‘holidays’ if you fancy an extra read!) and I still actually mean it.
What I have observed in clinic is that most people fail to stick to these resolutions because they set unrealistic goals for themselves. This might sound like you too -I know I have been there in the past- you set yourself a huge goal, you don’t have a clear plan on how to go about achieving this, you expect results to come quickly and end up terribly deflated when your willpower -not surprisingly- takes a nose dive and procrastination sets in.
I am not against resolutions because they can be a healthy way to reboot your life, but you need to keep them real. And better still, let’s call them ‘goals’ because a goal is something that you set to achieve, not something that sits there gathering dust.
The secret is to set yourself long-term, reachable goals.
Here is how:
- Baby steps. Taking one small step forward is certainly better than not moving at all. So, if the thought of having a dry January put you off entirely, then set yourself the goal to go alcohol-free just 3 days a week. Or maybe you are stuck in a rut when it comes to cooking and you don’t think you have time to learn new recipes. Get yourself a cookery book and aim to try a new recipe every month. You will soon discover that smaller tasks are more achievable.
- Less details, more action. It’s really no use in mentally committing to a 10-mile run three times a week if you are just going to think about it, rather than do it. Stop procrastinating and start doing. Get up, put your trainers on and just go.
- Record it. Write your goals down. Seeing your written goals in black and white increases the chances of sticking to them. I have just bought myself a lovely new diary (I am a pen and paper girl!) and I aim to look at my goals every day. But it doesn’t have to be fancy, you can stick bits of paper on the fridge or in the car. The important thing is to have them ‘in your face’, where you can read them daily.
- Pleasure, not pain. Focus on the positive side of things. For example, diets are a common New Year goal- but why turn your meal times into a prison sentence? Health boosting plans made of real foods are fun, affordable and delicious. Many people think that healthy eating is boring, and they associate it with deprivation. Turn those thoughts around, focus on all the yummy foods you can eat and think that each healthy bite you are choosing is a gift to yourself.
- Tell a friend. Voicing the possibility for change makes it more likely to happen. If you can involve a friend into keeping you accountable, so much the better. Accountability is part of the role of a health coach, and my clients often say that it is possibly the most important one. If you already work with me, you know it is vital that I keep you in action, motivated and moving towards whatever it is you want to achieve. When you know you are not alone, and you have a team behind you winning becomes much easier.
If you have decided to make 2018 the year you ‘ll fix those niggling health issues or make a commitment to losing weight, then get in touch. Call me on 07772491975 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and book a free discovery call to find out if we are a good fit and if so, the many ways I can help you to achieve your goals.
May I wish you a fantastic New Year, full of health, energy and joy!