Written by Jaz Popa
It has been a tough year this 2020, but with the start of the new year, it’s a perfect time to get a fresh start and turn over a new leaf. This new year will be a great opportunity to better yourself and start 2021 off right. Although your New Year’s celebration might look a little different this year, you can still make a resolution! However, resolutions can be hard to maintain, so here are some tips to help you reach your goals and keep your resolution this year!
BE REALISTIC AND SPECIFIC
When you are making a goal, it is important to be realistic. Strive for a goal that is attainable for your current lifestyle. This does not mean don’t challenge yourself, but to just think about an achievable goal. This will help ensure that you are able to maintain your specific goal.
When it comes to choosing your realistic goal, be specific. Identify exactly what you want to achieve within a broader goal you might have. Instead of setting a goal to lose weight or eat healthier, resolve to lose ten pounds or cut soda out of your diet. This will help you more easily set a plan for how you will accomplish your resolution.
Check out this site to find common goals and tips on how to achieve those specific goals here.
MAKE A PLAN
Once you have chosen your resolution, the best way to keep yourself on track is to outline your plan. Write out the steps you will take to eventually reach your goal. Choose a realistic number of steps to take each week and don’t take things too fast. Establishing new routines can be very challenging so make it easier on yourself by making slow changes and transitions to your lifestyle. Start with small steps so your changes can be sustainable and lead to long term success.
Identify where you might come across obstacles and plan out how you will deal with temptations. Be realistic with yourself about temptations and obstacles so that way when you encounter them, you will know what to do in order to combat them and get yourself back on track.
Although it’s good to push yourself, try to limit the number of resolutions you choose. Having a long list of goals for the new year can be overwhelming and difficult to manage. Instead focus on one goal at a time. This will make changing your habits feel much more attainable.
If you do have a large goal, break to up into smaller goals and take them step by step. For example, if your goal is to consume less sugar take it one step at a time through smaller accomplishments such as:
- Drinking 100% juice instead of beverages with added sugar
- Only drinking one cup of 100% juice per day
- Purchasing grocery items with no sugar added
- Making one homemade meal per week with no sugar and making one homemade dessert per month with low sugar
- Making three homemade meals per week with no sugar and making two homemade desserts per month with low sugar
Continue these steps until you have removed the amount of sugar you want from your diet. Make the steps you choose small enough that the transition in your lifestyle is gradual. This way the change will not shock your system. Don’t move on to the next step until you have made a habit out of the previous step. This will make your resolution sustainable and ensure that your lifestyle change is long lasting.
TRACK YOUR PROGRESS
Don’t just plan out your resolution, track your progress too! Keep track of every success, big or small and mark short term goals. This will help you mark your progress and keep you motivated. Recognizing successes, even small ones, will make you feel triumphant and inspire you to keep going!
Writing down your goals and keeping a journal of your progress will help you remember what you’re doing and why you’re doing it. If you start to lose motivation, look back, remind yourself why this goal is important to you, and look at how far you have come.
HAVE A SUPPORT SYSTEM
Working with people who have similar resolutions to you can help keep you motivated and on track. This could be as complex as working with an entire group with the same goals or as simple as sharing your resolution with a loved one. It’s always easier and less daunting to do something new with a friend. By working together, you can support each other and push each other to work harder. You can share your obstacles with one another and work together to find motivation to keep going. You can also help to keep each other accountable so you both meet your goals.
Changing your lifestyle can be very difficult, so if you do get off track, don’t beat yourself up! No one is perfect. Don’t obsess over the occasional slip up. Just take each day at a time, refer back to your plan, and keep going. Even if it’s been months since you took more steps to reach your goal, keep trying! Remember, you’re doing this for you. So, don’t be embarrassed to pick up where you left off or even restart. Remind yourself why you wanted to make this change. Recommit yourself to it and before you know it, you’ll be right back on track.
With these tips, keeping a New Year’s resolution will become a much more manageable goal. Leave 2020 in the past and look forward to a bright, new year filled with long lasting heathy habits. Follow these tips and make 2021 your best year yet!