Statistic Brain Research Institute, in 2015, 45% of people made New Year’s resolutions. Can you guess which resolution was most popular? If you guessed losing weight or maintaining weight management, you are correct! (“Enjoying life to the fullest” came in #4 and “staying fit and healthy” came in #5.) Don’t set yourself up for failure in 2017 by vowing to make huge changes that will be hard to keep. Instead, follow a few suggestions for successfully making a new year’s resolution you can stick to – for the long haul.
- Focus on one aspect. If you want to change your life or your lifestyle, don’t try to change everything at once. It won’t work. Instead pick one area of your life to change to begin. Make it something concrete so you know exactly what change you’re planning to make. If you’re successful with the first change, you can go ahead and make another change after a month or so. By making small changes one after the other, you still have the chance to be a whole new you at the end of 2017 and it’s a much more realistic way of doing it.
- Pick a start date. You don’t have to make these changes on New Year’s Day. Pick a day when you know you’ll be well-rested, enthusiastic and surrounded by positive people who can help you stay on track.
- Put your heart into it. Go for it 100% beginning on your chosen start day. Make a commitment and write it down on a card. You just need one short phrase you can carry in your wallet, keep in your gym bag or display by your bed and/or on your bathroom mirror. For example, your mantra could be “I will exercise to improve my bone and joint health” or “I will go to the gym for athletic training twice a week.” Choose a place that you view the card often in order to give yourself positive reinforcement.
- Remember that nobody is perfect. Don’t become discouraged if you don’t immediately achieve your New Year’s resolutions or if you have a setback in your quest for weight management. Losing weight is a journey; not a sprint. Weight loss won’t be permanently achieved overnight. (Wouldn’t it be great if you could eat a hot fudge sundae before bed and, by morning, lose 5 pounds?) The most important aspect of a resolution is that you keep trying.