Make Your New Year’s Resolutions last into 2020!
By: Melissa Murray, Registered Dietitian
The New Year is a time for reflection & change for many people. Over half the population will set a New Year’s Resolution, perhaps on finances, family time or very often to improve their health & wellness.
These goals are set with an abundance of motivation and eagerness! In January, gyms are full, and salad bars are plentiful. However come February the gym becomes emptier, and take out more prevalent. It’s said that only 8% of people actually keep their New Year’s Resolutions!
WHY does this happen? Change is hard! As is human-nature, we desire quick fixes and set ambitious goals to change everything at once. We want to try the newest diet or hottest gym, and to have lost that 20lbs yesterday! However, it can take up to 30 days to form a new habit.
Set yourself up for success this New Year by keeping the following tips in mind!
- Use prior years as learning opportunities. What barriers prevented you from keeping your resolutions? Was it time? money? resources? Or maybe trying to change everything at once! Choose 1 or 2 goals to start with and build from there. Achieving small goals on the way to your larger goal will increase your confidence and make you more motivated to continue!
- Have a support system! Tell your loved ones your plans. They can help to keep you accountable, and may even join you! Change is easier when doing it with other people and when it’s fun!
- Be SMART about your goals! What does this mean? SMART is an acronym that helps to keep your goals realistic and achievable
- S – specific: what exact goal do you wish to accomplish
- M – measurable: how will you measure progress or know you achieved your goal
- A – attainable: is it possible to achieve this goal by the deadline you set
- R – realistic/relevant: is the goal important to YOU. Is it the right time to work on this goal
- T – timely: When will you complete your goal
Example: I will have a meatless meal for dinner, 2 times a week, for the next 3 weeks.
SMART goals help you to make sustainable, lifestyle changes to allow you to KEEP the change!
- Think of WHY you are wanting to make the change and the pros AND cons to changing.
- Brainstorm potential barriers/challenges to achieving your goal, and plan for these ahead of time.
- How confident are you in achieving your goal? Research shows that if you are less than 70% confident, you need to make the goal easier!
Remember! You didn’t gain that 20lbs overnight and you don’t run a marathon before a 5km! It’s the same with everything else. Start small and gradually increase. This gives your body and mind time to adapt and boosts your confidence to continue and build upon your goals!
Lasting results are seen from small, sustainable, lifestyle changes. Often when we make drastic changes, and follow restrictive regimens, they are difficult to keep, and many of us eventually revert to our old habits.
Need help making SMART goals? Book an appointment with Melissa at Trilogy Physio, West Toronto. 416-232-2343.