My husband and I have always given a name to each New Year that goes by. This is our way of trying to achieve a certain set of goals that is relevant to us at the time. This year, due to a variety of reasons, we have decided to name 2017, the Year of health.
The challenge really is how to set and stick to your goals or ‘New Years Resolutions’, without letting these become an additional stressor in your life. It is so motivating when we achieve something we have set out to do. Below are some tips that may help you keep your New Years Resolutions.
- Make your goals specific – you are more likely to succeed if they are precise, for example, you will be better off setting a goal to run 3 miles without rest, three times a week than if you simply proclaim to get into shape.
- Measure progress regularly –because if you can measure it, you can change it. Motivation is key and this often comes on the form of tangible results, which may serve to help you adjust your efforts. For example, if you are trying to loose weight, don’t be afraid of the scales.
- Be patient – progress is seldom linear and we can be very hard on ourselves. Making lasting changes takes time.
- Share your goals with friends and family – this is because social support is critical, even though it may be scary to share something that you may take time and often a few failings to succeed. Checking in with someone can often be all you need to get your motivation back up and running.
- Schedule it – we often don’t have time for things, however if we diarise it, it becomes a priority and is more likely to actually happen. Treat your New Year resolutions in the same way as you would a doctor’s appointment.
- Something is always better than nothing – even if you are an all or nothing type of person, the difference between something rather than nothing is huge. For example, just because you had a few hot chips off your daughters plate, doesn’t mean you ‘may as well get a dessert since you already ate those chips!” If you don’t have an hour to go to the gym, put on your trainers and go for a 20-minute power walk. Any effort towards your goal is better than no effort at all.
- Resilience is paramount – when you slip up, don’t stress and turn temporary failures into excuses for giving up. Recognise the mistake and recommit to your goal.
In a nutshell, achieving your goals does not have to be about willpower. Instead, try making them SMART – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound.
If you would like help in setting achievable health goals, email me on firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call on 07860 472261 to make an appointment.