I’m not really sure how it happened, but 2012 is here! It is a fresh start and an opportunity for many people to put 2011 behind them while working toward new goals in the New Year. Now is the time to decide on the dreaded New Year’s Resolutions. These resolutions often suggest that just because it’s January 1st you’ll be able to dramatically change your life. People believe that due to a calendar change their mind, body, personality, mood, etc. will be different, but this can often set them up for failure. Another mistake that people make is being too vague when deciding on a resolution. If someone makes a goal to “lose weight” or “get healthier” these don’t have defined meanings and it is easy to either fall off track or give up all together. If you want to take your NYR seriously, here are some fail proof steps to follow:
- Make an attainable goal – instead of “losing weight,” decide on a specific amount in set period of time such as five pounds in five weeks. Create a set workout routine and pay close attention to what you are eating. By the second week in February you should have met your goal. Then you can readjust your goal if you like, but you should also enjoy your success.
- Narrow your focus – it is easy to want to better your health while also reorganizing your home and plant a garden and run a 5k, but in reality these goals combined are too overwhelming and you may end up falling short of reaching any.
- Prioritize – this coincides with not being vague. Since you may want to do all of the activities listed above, but thinking about them together seems discouraging, try to see which ones are reasonable and how long it will take to accomplish them. Becoming healthier needs more clarification. For example, make a goal to walk/run at least six to eight miles per week or to decrease your cholesterol/body fat percentage/waistline by a defined amount. Then, while continuing to keep your health goals or even increasing them, slowly start organizing rooms in your home by tackling one area at a time. As the weather gets warmer, start a small garden or plant some fresh herbs in pots in your kitchen. Now that you’ve been working on and achieving your other goals you can focus your attention on a new one like tackling a 5k or an even longer race.
- Let yourself be proud of your accomplishments – the best part of setting smaller, more attainable goals is that you can actually achieve them and feel a sense of accomplishment instead of setting yourself up for failure.
Remember, 2012 is twelve months long. You do not have to make a resolution and have it completed by January 31st. If you’re serious about making some healthy changes in the New Year really think about goals that you can set and achieve. Give yourself a reasonable amount of time and keep in mind that just because the year changed, doesn’t mean that your schedule will. Your mindset and motivation combined with realistic goals are what will make you successful in 2012. Happy New Year!!
-Be Healthy. Be Balanced.