New Year’s resolutions can often be seen as a joke. Many people don’t stick to their plans and end up feeling like they’ve failed within the first week. Why is this? There is something about starting a new year that can lend itself to the idea of implementing new practices or becoming a new you. It seems like a great time to introduce change. People can also set themselves up for failure at this time. I come to these points by having set goals for myself that I have yet to accomplish. I am changing that this year and invite you to join me! Here are a few of my thoughts on why our resolutions have crashed in the past and how we can shift the plan this year:
A lack of clarity offers fewer goals to work towards. Stating you want to be healthier or plan to go to the gym more doesn’t give you any structure. Make a clear plan. “I will bring my lunch to work at least 3 times each week.” “I will exercise for at least 20 minutes, 2 times a week.” These kinds of statements give you something to measure and hold you accountable.
Many of us have an ideal image in mind of where we’d like to be with our goals… someday… in the future. That’s not today. If you have never turned on your stove or oven, perhaps setting a goal to cook five course meals for yourself and friends every weekday is a bit far-fetched. Make your goals challenging while still attainable. You can always adjust them later.
These goals are flexible. Find yourself easily reaching the goals you set for 2016? Perfect! Push yourself to the next level or move on to something new. Not quite getting there each day/week/month? Do they need to be reconsidered and adjusted? What do you need to help you succeed? Either way, you’ve started and you’re a step ahead of where you were. Keep assessing your original goals with where you are now and alter them accordingly.
Consider your resolution as a new practice. There is often a learning period before something new becomes part of a regular routine. If you slip up with your resolution, keep going. One setback is not enough reason to stop. Learn from it and move forward.
Make it easy for yourself. Leave notes where you will see them each day. Set alarms on your phone. Make a pact with a friend to hold each other accountable.
Now you have a few of my tips to set yourself up for success this year. How am I using them? I have decided to write one blog entry for each calendar month during 2016. It may have been ideal to get this entry out on January 1st and that’s not what happened. I’m completing it now and will continue practicing. I have set reminders on my calendar and I now have all of you buddies (anyone who has read this far) to help hold me accountable.
If you need some help with ideas, contact me at JennumAcupuncture@gmail.com.