This time every year, companies start pumping out ads pummeling you to make New Year’s Resolutions. Shave off that belly flab! Get control of your finances! Conquer your closet! It feels like you should mount up, spear in hand, and do battle with your life!
Benjamin Franklin said, “Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better man.” The first recorded celebration of the new year was in babylon 4000 years ago, and it seems that we’ve been doing battle with our vices (and by extension, ourselves) ever since.
So, do you need or want to change? For most of us, the answer is, "Yes." But how do we do it? That's the part that trips us up. After all, approximately 50% of New Year’s resolutions fail. Why is this? Well, usually the goals are not realistic or life just gets in the way. We forget.
All is not lost. Do not despair. Change is hard, but it is possible. It's just tricky.
So here are the FoodWise tricks to making and keeping your resolutions in 2011!
- Make your goals measurable. Use numbers and action words. Instead of saying “I want to lose some weight", say “I will exercise for 30 minutes 3 times per week".
- Get an accountability buddy. Having a friend or family member who you talk to about your successes and failures makes it more likely you will follow through.
- Keep a journal. If you don’t know which actions are working and which are not, how can you change? You need specific feedback about your successes and failures.
- Don’t be afraid to revise. If you realize that exercising 3 times per week isn’t realistic, don’t stop. Revise it to 2 times per week. Something is better than nothing!
- Finally, REMEMBER! Where March begins in your planner, write yourself a little note asking about your resolutions.
Change has always been hard, but it doesn’t have to be a battle royale. Take it one small step at a time and soon all those little changes will add up to great things! Treat yourself kindly, allow yourself to fail -- and then try again! You can do this!