Ah, yes…it’s the new year and we’re ready to make some changes! Our lists are long, our motivation is high. We’re going to exercise five times a week, drink water instead of soda, eat veggies every day, cut back on alcohol consumption and stop smoking! All at the same time!!! WooHoo!!! NOT!!! Sorry. As amazing as it would be, true change just doesn’t happen that way. Yet, year after year, the gyms are full during January and weight loss companies make a fortune on our struggle to lose weight and get healthier. By March, the gyms are back to normal capacity and the weight loss centers have far less clients. Not only did we not meet the goals that we set, we are feeling guilty and unmotivated; not to mention stupid for wasting money! Can you see the definition of insanity at work here?
So, let’s do something different this year. How about setting just one resolution for the new year? Yep. Just one. That’s all you are allowed. I’m grinning as I write because I can feel the resistance already. Think about it. Don’t we have a lot of the same goals year after year? Wouldn’t it be incredible to get through 2015 with some true change in our habits and health? If you think so, read on and I’ll share a coaching tip for lasting change.
Write down no more than five things you want/need to change in your health.
Choose ONE – Here is the important part. You need to pick the one that will give you the best results for your effort OR THE EASIEST ONE!
Whichever one you pick, it must be structured in such a way that you CANNOT FAIL!!! For example, let’s say you seriously need to exercise but you dread it – hate it, etc. If that is the goal you choose, start with fifteen minutes, two to three times the first week. Anybody can do that right? Even if you use a walker or a cane, walk to the end of your driveway and back. Simple as that! If you want to start jogging or running, same concept. The next week, add more time. Stay with this goal until you get to the place you want to be. Maybe it’s working out several times per week for a minimum of forty-five minutes. Whatever it is, stay with it until you reach your optimum level before adding a second goal.
Why does this work??? You are building on success versus fighting with failure! Success motivates, failure discourages and we need all the motivation we can get!
For those of you that balk at this method, try it for three weeks before adding another change. At least get the one habit firmly entrenched before adding another challenge. I think you will be surprised at how easily you can make positive changes in your health. I have made many changes in my life and I find that the ones that stayed with me the longest were not new year’s resolutions. They were simple decisions with single-minded focus. Our health and habits are like everything else in our lives, they are fluid are constantly changing. I welcome each new year because it is a time of re-evaluation; to recognize what is working and what is not. For me, this year, my resolution is a recommitment to exercise. A knee injury has had me hobbling, cranky and lazy. I will use the above formula to ease back into an exercise habit. I share this with you because accountability is a powerful part of making changes. Stay tuned, I will report back with my results. So tell me…what is your new year’s resolution and how are you going to achieve it?
Yours In Health,