Keep your New Year Weight Loss Resolution
start of each New Year brings with it a renewed sense of optimism and
endless new possibilities. For those of us trying to lose
see the start of a new year as a chance to revitalize our weight
loss efforts and start new weight loss and healthier lifestyle
And when we think of all the possibilities, we begin to dream of a better us; the way we want to be and the way we could be if we made some changes and stuck to them.
For most people, setting New Year's resolutions is just fantasising because it's the beginning of a new year. They enjoy thinking about themselves being trimmer, healthier, sexier and with a renewed sense of happiness, but aren't serious about making real changes in their lives.
For the majority of others, the desire and intentions to make significant lifestyle changes are genuine and driven from deep within. These people use the season of new beginnings as the starting point on which to hinge their good intentions. Should their plans falter, they walk away a little worse for wear.
The problem for these people is that the feeling of failure they sense when they walk away from a New Year's resolution is that the experience of failure stays with them and makes us feel less successful generally. They begin to believe that they aren't good at anything, or if they already believe that, it is further reinforced. Most importantly, it leads them to discount their ability to change at all.
Desire is not enough.
Those that succeed in making their New Year's resolutions stick share the burning desire with the group of people described above, but they also know that:
- Self-change is one of the most difficult things we can do, and
- Between the person we are today and the new us stands our ingrained habits.
Personal change is possible, but not without reinforcing our resolutions
with plans for implementation.
Plan the work, work the plan.
To reach any new goal, we not only need to know exactly what we want (our resolution); we also have to know exactly how we are going to it. That is, we have to make our goals manageable by detailing the specific steps that will carry us to our ultimate destination.
Here are a few tried and true ways to help you to make your New Year's resolution more realistic:
- Choose personal goals that have real meaning for you. Make sure they are consistent with your values, resonate with your identity and will lead to some enjoyment for you.
- Break your goal down into manageable chunks. Say your resolution is to start running. You have to get specific about exactly what you are going to do, where you are going to do it, and at what time.
- Do anything. Just get started. If you want to start running, put on some runners and go outside. The hardest part of most tasks is simply getting started.
To make change in your goals more manageable and achieve a happier, healthier you in 2008 try some of these suggestions:
- Restructure your personal environment. If you want to start running each morning, lay your running clothes out next to your bed the night before so you can put them on first thing and be out the door before thinking of an excuse not to.
- Build some leeway into your plans. Remember, none of us are perfect and all of us fail at self-regulation at some point. The secret to long term success is to avoid giving up altogether because of a minor setback.
- Choose an obtainable goal. Resolving to look like a super model is not realistic for many of us, but planning to walk everyday may be.
- Don't choose the same resolution you've given up on many times before. If you are tempted to do this, try changing your resolution or setting a resolution that constitutes and important step towards your ultimate goal. For example, instead of stating that you are going to lose 10 kilos, try promising to eat healthier, increase your level of exercise or lose 5 kilos.
- Create a game plan. In January, write a plan. All successful businesses start with a business plan that describes their mission and specifics on how they will achieve it. Write your own personal plan and you'll be more likely to succeed.
- Ask friends and family to help, but be careful. Remember you just might get what you ask for and that could lead to you getting annoyed and relationships being affected. If you want help, ask only for gentle reminders at those times when you temporarily lose sight of your end goal.
- Reward yourself. If you've stuck with your resolution for 2 months, treat yourself to something special. But be careful about how you reward yourself. If you've lost 5 kilos, don't shout yourself a 250g block of Chocolate and a packet of Tim Tams as your reward. Instead, treat yourself to a something non-food related, like a facial or a massage.
- Get help. Everyone needs help and sometimes a friend just isn't enough. If you want to start exercising, employ the help of a personal trainer or talk to someone at your local gym. If you'd like to eat healthier, make an appointment to see a dietitian or similar health professional.
- Limit the number of resolutions you make. If you spread yourself too thin, chances are you won't achieve anything. Instead, be very focused on what you really what and remind yourself everyday of how it will change your life.
Be one of the positive statistics.
It has been estimated that fewer than 20% of us keep our New Year's resolutions. Unfortunately, many resolution failures surround losing weight and living healthier lives. Make this a truly happy New Year for you by following the tips above and become a happier, healthier you in 2008.
Happy New Year and thanks for visiting weightloss.com.au.
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This article was written by Scott Haywood.
Scott is the editor of weightloss.com.au. Scott has developed an expertise in fitness and nutrition, and their roles in weight loss, which led him to launch weightloss.com.au in 2005. Today, weightloss.com.au provides weight loss and fitness information, including hundreds of healthy recipes, weight loss tools and tips, articles, and more, to millions of people around the world, helping them to lead happier, healthier, lives.
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