The New Year is always an opportunity to start fresh. An opportunity to shed bad habits, resolve to make changes and emerge as your best self. But while making a New Year’s resolution is easy, keeping it throughout the year can be the tricky part.
Even the best resolutions can fade by Valentine’s Day if you don’t have a plan in place to make them happen. Find out how to make and keep New Year’s resolutions in 2016.
Making a New Year’s Resolution
The good news: People who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions. The bad news: Only 8% of people are successful in achieving their resolution. How can you be part of the 8%? A big factor is making a resolution that you can actually measure and achieve. “Eating better” is a vague goal, and one that’s easy to ignore when cravings hit. Instead resolve to do something concrete, such as replacing dessert with fruit. Setting specific goals helps structure success. Check out our blog on setting better goals.
Healthy New Year’s Resolutions
Resolving to eat healthy foods and exercise more is a great start. But there are additional resolutions you can make to support your overall well-being in the New Year:
• Resolve to smile more. Social psychologists agree that the simple act of smiling can make you happier and healthier. Smiling activates the release of dopamine, endorphins and serotonin, neurotransmitters that elicit positive emotions.
• Resolve to meditate. Even just five minutes a day of quiet meditation can help reduce stress and improve productivity. And if you feel less stressed, it’s easier to stick to a healthy eating plan.
• Resolve to make time for yourself. Busy work and home lives can be rewarding, but meeting everyone else’s needs can come at the expense of your own. Insist on carving out a few hours each week to enjoy whatever you’re passionate about in life.
How to Keep New Year’s Resolutions
Now that you have some concrete and achievable resolutions lined up, how can you be sure to achieve them? It’s not just about setting goals, but creating a plan to maintain progress. This plan should be able to monitor progress and make adjustments to the strategy when necessary. Setting a resolution is a one-time action. Keeping a resolution requires daily decisions and discipline.
The American Psychological Association recommends the following tips:
• Start small. Incremental changes are easier to tackle at first. Maybe make a promise to yourself to cut back to one soda a week. You can keep making changes as you go.
• Change one thing at a time. Focusing on one or two objectives keeps you from feeling overwhelmed. If your goal is to eat healthier, cut out one bad eating choice a day and replace it with something healthy. Add another as you feel ready until you’re eating more fresh fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and healthy fats.
• Talk about it. Sharing goals with others has been proven to help people stick to a plan. Your Program Advisors at SlimGenics are there to help you identify goals, create a plan and stay accountable.
• Don’t beat yourself up. No one is perfect. Don’t let one slip up derail your momentum.
• Ask for support. Have a partner in your goal and reach out when the going gets tough.
A program like SlimGenics makes it easier to stick to a resolution. Our easy-to-follow guidance and meal planning takes the guesswork out of following a healthy eating plan. And our dedicated Program Advisors provide the support, motivation and encouragement you need to become your best self in 2016. Imagine a New You in the New Year.