January 1st. New Year’s Day. This date is renowned for being a fresh start – a chance to make over or in most instances, have a do-over on the resolutions made the year before. Walk into any gym early this month and you will see that every machine is taken, there is a line for the water fountain, and everyone is decked out in their matching gym clothes. As the days go on and on, there are fewer and fewer people there until the end of January when the gym looks just about the same as it did in December except for a few new faces. Those fresh faces are the people who not only WANT to make a change in their lives but actually WILL make the change. Yes, those people… They are to be envied. Do you feel like you’d like to be amongst this elite class?
Let me tell you a little bit about what YOU need to do to be one of “those people…”
1. Make a resolution! That sounds obvious but the key is to think about it carefully and write it down. People who make a resolution are ten times more likely to attain a goal than those who just “hope” for it.
2. Make a plan! A lot of people make a resolution on a whim and then don’t follow through. Once that initial excitement has passed, their motivation is lost.
3. Set small goals! Have you ever heard of the SMART approach to goal setting? This means that goals should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely. I remember very well looking at the scale and seeing a number that was about 40 pounds heavier than my “happy weight.” That is really frustrating. But, if you break it up to losing one to two pounds per week, it seems so much easier to attain.
4. Reward yourself! Celebrate your small successes. And rewards don’t have to be food related either. Consider things like treating yourself to a spa visit, going out with friends for a movie, getting your hair done, or even enjoying a mid-afternoon nap on a weekend.
5. Tell others and enlist their help! Broadcast your resolution. Tell your loved ones about how much your goal means to you and ask them to help keep you accountable.