Updated: Mar 17
If the excitement of starting a New Year fades and you find yourself struggling to keep your new year resolutions and quickly settling back into old routines, with proper motivation and by following the steps below, you can make 2021 the exception.
The secret is to turn your optimism for the New Year into focused actions. Once you start a routine, it becomes easier to follow through. Whether you're making multiple resolutions or wanting to work towards one bigger goal, be sure to pick something that's achievable within the year's time frame.
Set Achievable and Clear Goals
Start by making your goals SMART -(specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timely),so you don't set yourself up for future failure. If for example, your goal is to lose weight, determine where you stand currently, and then give yourself a goal that can be achieved following the 1-2 pounds per week guideline.
Rather than saying that you want to be thinner, say how many pounds you'd like to lose. Then define the "How" and "Why" as well. Are you going to follow a specific diet? How are you going to cut calories? Are you going to start a moderate exercise routine? How often? Why do you want to lose weight? This question is more important than you think as your why will often determine whether you are motivated enough to stick with your goals in the long term.
With a clear, achievable goal and a set plan of tasks you know you can complete, you are virtually guaranteeing your success! You know exactly what you want why you want it and how you're going to get there. All you need to do now is take action.
Take Action - Taking action is usually where people tend to run into some trouble. It's easy to get pumped up about an idea, but when it comes down to executing your plan, you might be tempted to fall short. This is where your why will come in handy as your why is going to have to be bigger than your excuses.
In this situation, you only need to muster up the energy to start. Tell yourself that you're going to stick to your new plan for one week and then evaluate how it went. On the other hand, if you take everything in all at once, you'll be less likely to begin in the first place. If it looks overwhelming, just focus on the short term.
Form a Routine - The reason you want to take baby steps at first is because once you form a new routine, it's actually easy to hold yourself to it. Some say that it takes as little as 21 days to get a new routine ingrained in your brain and to form a new habit. Although, once your routine is built, you may find that you look forward to your exercise sessions.
Reward Yourself - Reward yourself often for your excellent efforts because you deserve it for working hard to change yourself for the better. You don't need to wait until the end of the year to treat yourself. Break up your goals into smaller steps and every time you achieve a milestone, give yourself something that you enjoy. It could be an item you've been wanting , a glass of wine, a long luxurious bath, rewarding yourself for a job well done motivates you to keep going.
Do It Again! - After your first successful year of bettering yourself through New Year's resolutions, you can then repeat the process and work on another aspect of your life. Before you know it, you'll be a perfectly happy and healthy person because of your awareness, perseverance, and hard work!
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