7 tips to help keep your New Year's resolution
The New York Post put together a thorough list detailing how to keep your new Years Resolution for 2018. Buzz60’s Sam Berman breaks it down.
If you made a New Year’s resolution for 2018, you are among about 40 percent of Americans who did the same. But eventually, February rolls around, the excitement has worn off and old habits can creep back in. In fact, it’s estimated that about 80 percent of resolutions fail by February and only eight percent of people actually meet their goals. So what makes people successful? It’s not just good luck.These seven tips can help you beat the odds in 2018.
Set realistic goals
Set short-term, realistic goals. Rather than setting one overwhelming goal on Jan. 1, set several, more achievable goals. If you want to quit smoking in 2018, you could cut out two cigarettes each month rather than quitting cold turkey. If you have gained 50 pounds over 10 years, don’t aim to lose 50 pounds in a single year. Instead, you could try to lose three pounds in the first month.
Many people want to lose weight, but that’s not a very specific goal. How do you plan to lose weight? Specific goals could include:
- Stop buying snacks in the vending machine
- Pack healthy lunches
- Walk during breaks
- Ditch sugary drinks
Focus on changing one behavior at a time. Completely revamping your entire diet in a single day is not only very overwhelming, but you’re less likely to maintain those changes long-term.
Having a plan is the best way to achieve and maintain lifestyle changes. Even people who already choose positive behaviors do so by having a plan. Plans can be as simple as packing a gym bag for work, meal planning before grocery shopping or budgeting each month to prevent overspending.
Find people who have similar goals to you, and tell others about your resolutions for accountability. If one person in the household is trying to make a healthy lifestyle change, they are much more likely to be successful if the whole household commits to the change together.
Is your resolution to stop eating so much junk food when you’re watching television at night? First, don’t keep junk food in the house. Second, try doing something other than turning on the television after work. Instead, read a book, converse with your family, walk outside or prep a healthy meal.
Just because you failed to make healthy choices for one day or even an entire month, that does not mean you have to throw in the towel forever. Lifestyle changes are difficult to achieve, so show yourself grace. Don’t strive for perfection. Each day is a new opportunity to improve your health.
This is often something people ignore, but don’t skimp on the rewards. Rewards should be motivating to you and not detrimental to your goal. If your goal was to lose weight, don’t choose a cupcake as a reward. If your goal was to save money, don’t allow yourself to splurge on expensive shoes. Examples of good rewards include planning a weekend getaway or date night, buying yourself flowers, investing in a fitness tracker, getting a massage, taking a nap, going for a hike, taking a day off work or scheduling family photos. When you’re making a plan, include a list of rewards and have a reward system. For example, every time you go to spin class, give yourself a star. When you reach 25 stars, select something from your list!
Rebecca Ellison is the Worksite Wellness Dietitian at the Knox County health Department.
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