Is Your New Year’s Resolution Healthy?
Did you make a New Year’s resolution this year? Did you decide that 2012 was the year that you were going to start making healthier lifestyle choices? Surveys show that by the end of January, most people have either gotten off track, forgotten, or just given up trying to reach their New Year’s resolution goals. So why do most New Year’s resolutions fail? It is usually due to two reasons: we either don’t take our health goals seriously, we are not prepared, or both.
If you are struggling with your health goals, here are a few key guidelines that will help you get back on track:
1) It’s never too late. Just because you went off the rails doesn’t mean it’s time to give up…it simply means it’s time to refocus and recommit.
2) Make your goals count. Make them significant. In order to experience growth, we need to challenge ourselves.
3) Write down your goals and read them every day. Daily reminders will help keep your goals in the forefront of your consciousness.
4) Break your overall health goal down into smaller increments. This makes it easier and more manageable to track your progress.
5) Have an accountability partner. This can be a spouse, close friend, family member, or co-worker. Choose someone who will motivate you when you are struggling and also help to celebrate your accomplishments.
6) Seek support, guidance, and advice from people who inspire you. Study the habits of healthy people. They know exactly what you are going through because they have been there themselves.
If we truly want to be successful at meeting the health goals we set for ourselves each year, we need to move away from thinking of them as impulsive decisions that we entertain for a short period of time. Instead, we need to view the entire process as a lifelong investment. Each year we build upon the improvements we made the year before, and we get stronger and healthier as a result. Just as a carpenter takes an unfinished piece of wood and sands down the rough edges until it is smooth, we are refining our health experience with each goal we reach.
Health is not a destination – it is a journey. Now is the time to get back on the path.
Dr. Justin Mariano