It’s getting to be that time of year, when people start jotting down their aspirations for a new year. What is it about January that makes people believe the best in themselves? Is it that people view a new year as a kind of ceremonial new start, or is it because, after the excesses of the holiday season, people crave moderation and self-improvement?
Well, it might be a bit of both. Regardless of the reason, the most popular New Year’s Resolutions tend to be about heath and wellbeing, since those are the concerns most prevalent in people’s lives. But these kinds of resolutions can be hard to keep, since they so often involve breaking negative, firmly entrenched habits.
But New Year’s Resolutions don’t have to be hard to keep. Whether you’re looking to get fit, or simply lead a healthier lifestyle, try these tips to help you stay on course.
There’s power in numbers, even where resolutions are concerned. Find friends who have similar aspirations for the New Year, and try to achieve them together. The motivation of others, and the accountability they offer, are powerfully effective in staying on track. Go on a morning jog together, eat together, or do something fun like try axe throwing with your friends – anything that will get you active, and motivated to achieve your goals.
Make It Fun
Speaking of axe throwing, sometimes all you need is a fun activity to get in shape. You know: a spoonful of sugar to help the medicine go down. Despite what you might think about getting in shape, you aren’t beholden to the gym, nor do you have to treat it as punishment. Getting is shape, can – and should – be fun.
Set Realistic Goals
Too often, people shoot for the stars, only to land right back where they started. The reason for this is that if you set too high a bar for yourself, and fail to meet those colossal expectations, you’re more likely to just give up trying. If you make smaller, more manageable resolutions – losing a couple pounds a month, for instance – you are far more likely to keep them. And when you keep them, you’ll have the satisfaction achieving your goals, as well as a better end result than you would have had otherwise, if you had failed to achieve a large goal.
Track Your Progress
Tracking your progress is great for two reasons: one, it allows you to take pride in your ongoing achievement; and two, it helps you stay accountable to yourself. When you track your progress, you keep your resolution at the forefront of your thoughts, and therefore are less likely to dismiss it. Keep a journal or download a progress app to help you in your journey.
Keeping your resolutions isn’t easy, despite how this article might characterize the process. It’s hard work and, at the end of the day, you can’t beat yourself up if you fail. But to give yourself a nudge in the right direction, try these four simple tips. Happy New Year!