HAPPY NEW YEAR!
2017 is here! You've probably heard a few people say, "it's going to be the best year yet!"
While our intentions are great, we tend to put too much pressure on ourselves this time of year with unrealistic resolutions.
Did you resolve to lose a ton of weight this year? To finally quit smoking? To exercise daily? While these are all great ideas, sometimes the concept is just too daunting.
The result? A week or a month later, our resolutions have crumbled, and we're doing the same old thing, which triggers feelings of shame and failure. We end up farther back than we were before we set the resolution.
So, if you set a goal for yourself this year, I want to make sure you succeed in fulfilling that goal so that you can focus on living a healthier, happier life each and every year.
Making changes in your life is not easy - that's why so many people revert back to what they feel comfortable with after a short time of trying something new.
If you are serious about making a positive change this year, be sure to read on for our 5 effective ways to make a change and don't just make a New Year's Resolution...make a RESOLUTION FOR YOUR LIFE.
5 EFFECTIVE WAYS TO MAKE A CHANGE
1. Get Clear On What You Want
Life moves so fast. If you don't take time to stop and think about what you want, time can seriously get away from you.
At some point today, sit down without distraction and just think about what you'd like your life to look like some 3-5 years into the future.
Answer the questions, what would you like to be doing? Where would you like to be? Who do you want to be around? What do you want to look like?
Be generic and stay away from the details and the "I don't want" list.
Visualize the positive ideas and then write them down.
When you know exactly what you want, it's easier to achieve smaller goals leading up to that big main goal. A life plan helps to guide you in the way you ultimately want to go to lead a healthier and happier life.
2. Identify Small Steps
Identify small steps that might lead you toward your end goal. Maybe you want to feel energetic and healthy in five years. Maybe you imagine an active life, or hiking the Pacific Crest Trail, or simply being able to pick up your kids or grandkids without back pain.
You know that in order to make progress towards those ends, you need to start eating healthier and getting more exercise.
If your long-term vision involves getting a PhD, or teaching abroad, or starting your own school, you can identify some (as many as possible) of the steps you could take to start that journey. The key is not to get too attached to the destination. The journey there might lead you somewhere else that you might miss if you're too focused on an end-goal.
In order to take the small steps that will lead to big changes, you need to be well-anchored in your vision of something different.
If making small changes is challenging, return to step one.
3. Create New Routines
The experts say it takes 21 days to form a habit after sticking with it every day. Ask anyone and they will say that this takes determination and the desire to really want something better in life.
In order to create a habit, you need to build these new changes into your daily routine.
If you want to develop healthier eating habits in the future, then you might start small by substituting one meal a week with a healthier version. For example, your afternoon snack of potato chips could be substituted with a handful of almonds. Or, your burger and fries could be substituted for a turkey patty and sweet potatoes.
Also, something that helps change the way your mind thinks is to change your vocabulary when you are talking to people.
For example, let's say you're trying to quit smoking or cut back on alcohol. When someone comes up to you and asks if you'd like to go grab a smoke or a drink, your typical response is, "I can't, I'm trying to quit." This "I can't" speech implies that we can't have something, which obviously makes us want it even more.
Instead of "I can't" switch your lingo to "I don't" - this gives you a sense of empowerment. You are making the decision to ditch a temptation because of the end goal you are aiming for.
4. Plan Ahead
Being a planner is a wonderful thing when it comes to routines and making changes to better your life.
Planning head paves the path to success. Just think about it for a minute.
If you are going on vacation, you plan where you are going to stay, how you're going to get to your destination and even what you are going to do once you get there. This all guarantees a smooth vacation, saves time and headaches and can even save you some money.
Now, if we plan for things like that, why don't we plan ahead for success with our life goals? How do we do that, anyway?
Let's say your overall goal is to eat healthier and make better food choices. Well, in order to do that, you need to plan ahead. Clean out your pantry of any unhealthy foods that will cause you to go off course, stash healthy snacks in your desk, purse, car, pantry, etc., sit down once a week and plan out your meals so there's no guessing what to have for dinner.
Yes, this all takes time, but remember, once you make it part of your routine you are more likely to stick with it in the long run. It's a change you aren't used to. You just have to make it your new normal.
5. Acknowledge the Set-Backs
We are human. We aren't perfect. Therefore, something will come up that veers us off course with our plans. It's life. It happens.
The best way to deal with these set-backs is to acknowledge that they happened and reflect on why they happened.
If there is a person or thing in your life that is constantly holding you back and trying to sabbotage your efforts to be a better you, perhaps it's time to stay away from that person or thing for a while.
Surrounding yourself with positive influences can help you succeed in any endeavor! There's no room for negative people or thoughts to creep in at this time, so, say see you later until you are at a better place in life and with your goals.
If you find you need to tweak your routines in order to avoid more set-backs, then do it! You are the only one in control of you. You do what's best for you and everything will be okay!
So, when you're friends and co-workers are already ditching their resolutions by this time next week, you can be assured your goals will stay right on track because of the small changes you are making in your life.
This year, say NO to New Year's Resolutions and YES to making life changes that will help you to become a better you in the long run.
What changes will you be making this year to be a better you in the future? Let me know in the comments below!
Yours in Health & Happiness,
P.S. If you're looking to get healthier from the inside out, be sure to add in a cup or two of Oolong tea to your daily routine. It will leave you feeling energized, hydrated, and ready to conquer the day! Added perk? It'll boost your metabolism to keep you burning calories all day long, which will help with that end goal of losing weight and feeling great!
Pick up your box today to get a jumpstart on achieving your goals!