Happy 2016 everyone! If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you’ll know that I took a little bit of a break from blogging and social media over the holidays. 2015 came and went in a total blur for me. I quit my job, started my own business, launched a blog, bought a house, renovated a house and moved all in the last half of the year. Needless to say, I was both very ready and not quite prepared for the year to end.
As December came to an end, I felt both physically and mentally exhausted. The thought of cooking, writing, checking in on social media… I could just sense that I needed a legitimate break from everything. Instead of fighting the urge to “check out” so to speak, I completely gave in. I knew what the benefit would be if I gave myself the time to decompress and I knew the damage that would have been done had I pushed myself too hard.
Understanding and trusting the reason for making any decision, in my case, making the decision to sign off for the holidays, is what inspired me to write this post.
I’m normally not one for making New Years resolutions specifically, but I have made quite a few resolutions and commitments to myself over the years. Some have stuck and others have not. Aside from my personal experience, as a health coach I’ve also experienced first hand what it takes to follow through on any decision, big or small.
Sticking to our guns and following through on any promise we make ourselves can be extremely rewarding. But first, it’s important to understand how to make a change that’s actually sustainable. So, without further ado, here are three secrets to keeping any resolution!
1. Make an informed decision. Out of each of these three tips, I would say this first one is the most important. Regardless of whether you’ve decided to eat healthier, commit to a regular workout routine or take on any large project, it’s important to really understand the why. For example, if you decide to adopt a paleo diet simply because you heard it was something that may enable you to lose weight or because your friend is doing it, I guarantee that sticking to that goal will be a challenge. Before making any resolution or any commitment, it’s important to do your research beforehand or really dig deep within yourself to figure out why you want to fulfill the specific goal you’re shooting for.
Don’t just commit to losing weight for the sake of losing weight or giving up dairy for the sake of giving up dairy. Ask yourself why that’s something you want. What might losing weight enable you to do and accomplish that you cannot now? What health benefits might you see from giving up dairy and what types of ailments do you suffer from currently that might dissipate after giving it up? Envision what life might be like once you follow through and remind yourself of your reasons time and time again throughout the journey.
2. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. If you’re really serious about this year’s resolution, you need to take the goal itself pretty seriously too. Let’s say your goal is to “get healthier” this year. The problem with that type of resolution is that it’s far too broad. No matter how committed you may be, if you don’t set specific, tangible goals for yourself, chances are you aren’t going to be able to stick to your commitment. Break down your goal into bite size pieces. Perhaps you set monthly weight loss goals, commit to a specific gym routine or outline certain foods you’d like to avoid. By setting tangible goals, you’ll not only be more likely to succeed, but you’ll be able to celebrate small accomplishments along the way!
3. Track your progress. Let’s face it, we’re all so busy with so many different commitments that keeping track of how far we’ve come sometimes falls by the wayside. Recognizing the accomplishments that you’ve made along the way to attaining your goal is a fantastic trick for sticking to what you’ve started. If you’re looking to lose weight, taking progress photos is a fantastic way to track your successes and celebrate each time you notice a difference. If your goals have to do with diet, keep a journal of how you felt during the entire journey and compare your notes from the beginning to how you feel in the present. Do you have more energy? Do you feel less stressed? Without keeping a log or a journal, it’s often hard to recognize what’s actually been accomplished. Progress is always slow and steady, but when you record each day of your journey, it truly is amazing to look back and see how far you’ve come!
I’d love hear what resolutions you’ve set for 2016 and some tricks you are using to stick to your goals. Hopefully these three tips are helpful as you set out to accomplish any and all of your resolutions!