The practice of making New Year’s resolutions is said to have dated back to the ancient Babylonians, who would make resolutions in order to gain the favor of the gods and begin their year anew. And we’ve been breaking these resolutions ever since. Typically only 8% of New Year’s resolutions are kept. Why are resolutions so hard to stick with? Often, it is because we make unrealistic goals without thinking about the hard work and determination that will be required in order to succeed.
This year, try making smaller, more realistic resolutions. This will increase your likelihood of success. If you’re trying to lose weight, be sure you are setting an achievable goal. Better yet, instead of focusing on weight loss, focus on eating healthier and exercising more. Tell yourself you will go for a walk 3 times a week, and stick with it. If you have a busy week, and can only walk 2 times, that’s alright. Count every walk as a success, rather than focusing on the walks you didn’t take. In no time, you’ll work yourself up to walking every day, or even jogging. Maybe by next year you’ll be signed up for a 5K! Adopting a positive attitude will help you leaps and bounds in achieving your goal.
As for eating healthier, avoid diets in general. Diets set you up for failure with extreme changes and upset to your routine. Instead, focus on living a healthier lifestyle. Eat more fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and avoid processed foods when possible. Make a few small changes at first, so that it won’t be such a shock to your system. Tell yourself you’ll eat 1 cup of vegetables per day. Try to gradually increase that until you reach the 2 1/2 cups that are recommended. There will be some days when you won’t be able to stick to this goal 100%, but don’t beat yourself up over broccoli and carrots. It’s alright to have a cheat day once in a while, as long as you get back on track the next day and don’t let one day derail all your hard work.
Are you trying to quit smoking in 2016? If so, that is wonderful news. There’s no better time than now to quit smoking, as there are many products and programs available to help. But understand that this is a big commitment that you will be making, and you don’t have to do it alone. Find resources in your community to help you achieve your goal.
Check out the following links for programs in your area:
If you have a friend or a family member with similar goals as you, why not try making a resolution together? It’s much easier to achieve your goals when you have someone holding you accountable. You can plan days to workout together, and share heathy recipes. Be sure to encourage each other, and check in daily to see how that person is doing. You’ll be surprised at how much easier it is to succeed when you have company.
If you don’t have one major goal, but rather a long list, try setting one goal a month. Tackle some smaller areas that you want to work on this year, whatever they may be. By the end of the year, you will have kept 12 resolutions!
Whatever your goals are for 2016, we wish you the utmost success. Let’s make 2016 our best year yet!
If you’d like to share your New Year’s resolutions for 2016, tell us in the comments!