It’s a new year, and for many people that means they’ve made plans for a “new you.” But even the most sincere resolutions can fall to the wayside – and they often do. If you find yourself struggling to keep your resolutions for more than a few months, here are some suggestions to help you out.
First, ramp up slowly. Starting with a modest resolution, and then building on it over time, is an easier path to travel than promising dramatic changes all at once. Instead of vowing to never eat sweets again, resolve to just cut back or only enjoy it in moderation.
Resolve to change habits, not to reach arbitrary goals. Instead of resolving to lose a specific amount of weight, resolve to adopt a healthy habit that will help you close in on that goal. Saying that you’ll have fresh fruit for breakfast or take a brisk walk after work is a lot less intimidating than saying you’ll lose 30 pounds by March.
Expect to slip, especially in the first couple of weeks. It doesn’t mean that your resolution is broken, it’s just a reminder that meaningful changes can be difficult to make. Slipping means that you need to work harder, but it doesn’t mean you can’t do it.
Write yourself a reminder of why this change is important. Remembering why you’re making this change can help keep you going when you feel like you’d rather just quit.
And most importantly, start now! Resolving to do something tomorrow is not that different than resolving to do it never. If you’re serious about making a change, take the first step today. It can be as simple as taking a walk during your lunch break or saying no to something you know isn’t good for you. You don’t have to spend an hour after work at the gym, but you should make sure you do something to prove to yourself that you’re serious.