New Year, New You?
Happy New Year! If you are like more than half the given world right now, you are currently thinking about or starting off a new goal for the new year. Beginning with the Romans making promises to the God Janus, the tradition has spread to most of the Western hemisphere, with more than 40% of Americans vowing to change themselves come January 1st. If you are one of those 129,104,807 people, I have some tips to help you actually stick to your resolutions for 2017.
First and foremost, change comes from within. If you have had the same resolution to lose “X” pounds for the last 10 years, or change an aspect of your life like your job or your house and it has been a “New Year’s Resolution” for multiple years, we need to chat…. A new year is a great time to make a change, but ultimately, the change comes when you want it to. So, if it happens to be when you flip the calendar from December to January, awesome, but if you feel like you are ready for a change on a random Tuesday in July, start your change then! Change comes from within… and all the tips in the world will not help if you are not mentally prepared to make that change.
But if you ARE ready…
Step 1: Set your Long-Term Goal
New Year’s Resolutions usually have a deadline of 1 Year (by 2018 I will have lost 30 pounds). These are considered “Long-Term Goals”. Long-Term Goals should follow the S.M.A.R.T Guideline. Each goal should be the following:
S- Specific- As specific as possible to really narrow down what you want to do with your goal
M- Manageable- Really think about what you can do as a person with the time you’ve allowed
A- Attainable- This should be something you can accomplish, we’re setting no one up for failure here.
R- Relevant- It should also be relevant to your life situation
T- Time- Oriented- Every goal you set should have a time stamp connected to it
So, we are going to complete a broad, but SMART Long-Term Goal: My example is a pretty common one: I will lose 30 pounds by 2018.
Step Two: Break It Down
Now that we have our Long-Term Goal, it is important for us to set some shorter, easily attainable Short-Term Goals to help us on our way. We come from a pretty instant gratification society and if we are not seeing results from our goal immediately, it will be easy for us to give up hope and bail out on our goals around March or even earlier. To combat this “I’m getting nowhere” feeling, set up from easy goals to knock down along the way. Keep your goals in a highly visible place to see them often!! I recommend the refrigerator or your desk at work.
Samples for “I will lose 30 Pounds by 2018”
Short-Term Goal #1: I will participate in Sober/Dry January
Short-Term Goal #2: I will start going to the gym twice a week every week until April 30
Short-Term Goal #3: I will join one exercise class for the months of June and July
Short-Term Goal #4: I will have lost 15 Pounds by July 15
Short-Term Goal #5: I will go to the gym three times a week every week from August to December
Step Three: Understand You Are Human
You will backslide, you will not complete some short-term goals, you will have to tweak your short-term goals in order to work around this thing called life. But, you can do it! Remember, change starts from within, so really evaluate if you want to make the change, and if you do follow these steps to 2018 Resolution success!!!
Wishing you the happiest of New Year’s.