So, it’s New Year’s Day. We find ourselves cleaning up from last night’s festivities, and looking toward a New Year and a fresh start; a time to resolve to do things differently this time around.
Are you one of the many Americans who have made a News Year’s resolution? Just out of curiosity, did you make any resolutions at this time, last year? How many did you follow through on? Be honest with yourself. If you’re like 73% of us, you didn’t stay with your resolution? Why?
Many of us set resolutions that are either unrealistic, or there are just too many to tackle. We shouldn’t try to reinvent ourselves overnight. Small changes make the biggest difference and last the longest.
So this year, instead of making a resolution, how about making yourself just one or two promises? Instead of your resolution being that you’ll lose 100 pounds in 6 months (did I mention unrealistic?), promise yourself that you’ll eat 5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day and that you’ll be active for 30 minutes each day*. That sounds a lot easier than having a giant weight loss goal looming in front of you.
This would be an example of setting SMART goals. You can read more about those here. Once you’ve kept your first promise or two, move on to the next one. And be sure and tell a few close friends or family members so they can support you, and you’ll feel more accountable for your actions.
Setting small goals that we can easily accomplish will give us greater satisfaction and our confidence will be higher when we set our next goal.
You can also get help with the new, FREE “Healthy Habits” app from Indiana University Health and the American Heart Association. This is a really easy tool to use that can help you set goals, and keep you on track. Download it by clicking here.
Another great resource if you’re promising yourself you’ll stop smoking, is the National Cancer Institute’s SmokeFree website: www.smokefree.gov, or you can call 1-800-QUIT-NOW.
Here’s to promising ourselves a better 2013!!
(Image Credit: iStockphoto/Thinkstock)