It's that time of the year.
The time when people make lists of all their goals and resolutions for the coming year.
When they declare, that even though they fell short this year, next year will be better. Next year they will get it right.
They will stick to their diet or fitness regiment.
They will devote more time to family and friends.
They will save more money.
They will get that promotion at work.
There is something within us that yearns for a fresh start. Although we can resolve to change with the next step we take, bite of food we eat and dollar we spend-- we tend to gravitate to January 1st as being the holy grail of resolution-setting. But maybe you've noticed that those resolutions you set seem to taper off within the first few weeks of the new year.
According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology, only 8% of people who make new year's resolutions achieve them. Wow.
People have a difficult time maintaining resolutions and achieving their goals because, on average, it takes at least 21 days to form a habit, and they are not giving themselves enough time to integrate their new behavior into their routine.
So this year, instead of making resolutions-- create habits!
By focusing on creating habits you will adopt simple, sustainable behaviors that will set you up for success in achieving your big goals.
There is a lot of information on the web about how to create a habit. I really enjoyed this article from Forbes that outlined the five stages of change and explains that most new year's resolutions don't last because people don't go through the stages of change.
If you are truly looking to make a change this year, here are a few tips to help you turn those resolutions into healthy habits!
. Identify Readiness to Change
All too often we attempt to change something about ourselves to appease a loved one, to impress a peer or because society bombards us with propaganda telling us we should meet a certain standard. Real change is only achievable if you want it and are ready to work for it. No one can want it for you. Establishing a new year's resolution that you are not fully committed to will only lead to failure.
. Stay Positive
Take inventory of your true thoughts and feelings about the habit you are trying to create. Do you find yourself struggling with self-doubt? Constant negativity will drag you down. It will be tough to make a change and stick with it if you are constantly telling yourself it won't work. If you find yourself dealing with self-doubt, implement strategies such as journaling, affirmation of your strengths and surrounding yourself with positive people. Recognize and replace irrational thoughts with productive and realistic thoughts.
. Setbacks are Part of the Process
Creating a new habit won't be all sunshine and rainbows. You'll slip up at some point. Don't let yourself get stuck in the 'Well, I ate one cookie and already ruined my diet, I might as well have some more.' trap. Your response to setbacks will heavily determine your likelihood of success. Convince yourself that any setback you face is temporary. You can wake up the next morning and get right back on track.
. Find an Accountability Partner
We are social creatures. It's tough to do anything in a vacuum. Instead of attempting to create a healthy habit all by your lonesome-- snag an accountability partner! Find someone you trust that will ask you the tough questions, provide constructive feedback and hold you accountable. Set up regular times to discuss progress, challenges and successes. Keep a daily journal as a way to track and record this information and to give you a quick reference when meeting with your accountability partner.
"Stay #motivated in 2016! Turn those #resolutions into #healthy habits."
This is an exciting time of year. A time of reflection. A time to dream about your future. Set yourself up for success by creating habits instead of resolutions this year!
Your turn! Do you typically create new year's resolutions? How do you hold yourself accountable? What is your biggest goal for 2016?
This post is linked up with The Fit Foodie Mama for Wild Workout Wednesday, and Jill for Fitness Friday. Make sure to stop by and check them out!