New Year’s resolutions, however, often fail because we usually set overwhelming and unrealistic goals — and expect everything to easily change on January 1st. Planning ahead and having realistic expectations can help us follow through with resolutions.
1-min tip: Find a partner. Whether a friend, spouse, or coworker — finding someone that you can partner up with and share your goals and milestones can be extremely helpful. If you are able to verbalize your intentions and plans, it makes them feel more real and important to accomplish. Also, employing someone to help hold you accountable when things get off track can do wonders.
5-min tip: Envision success. A great way to motivate yourself as well as pave the way to success is to actually sit down, close your eyes, and envision where it is you want to be once you’ve changed a habit or completed a goal. Not only is this a more positive step in attaining things, rather than berating yourself, but it’s a great practice in meditation and guided visualization.
15-min tip: Be realistic. Think of resolutions that you know that you actually have the time and resources to commit to. Goals should still be challenging, or they’re not helping you to change your habits — but if you want to spend time volunteering, for example, and know you have no free time to do so, you may have to look at charitable options that don’t take up time.
30-min tip: Keep your list short. An important thing to keep in mind when setting resolutions is to keep them short, simple, and most importantly — measurable and specific. Avoid the ambiguous, large goals such as “lose weight” and set smaller, short-term goals such as “lose 10 pounds in 90 days.” Then, continue to set short-term goals after that. These stepping stones make the larger goals more attainable.
This article first appeared in the December 2017 edition of the HealthPerks newsletter.