The start of a new year is right around the corner so you may have already started thinking about what New Year’s resolutions we are going to commit to in 2017. If you practice this yearly ritual, then you are probably familiar with the fact that the majority of resolution seekers are not successful in carrying out their commitments. In fact, of the 45% of Americans that make New Year’s resolutions, only 8% are successful in achieving their goals. With such a low success rate, making resolutions doesn’t sound very promising for those of us looking to make a change. But, not to worry!
The Redwood Club is here to help you reach your fitness goals. We strongly believe that in order for people to be successful, they must define achievable resolutions and develop action plans for carrying out their goals. To help with the process, we have listed seven important factors to consider.
1. Sell Yourself on Self-Improvement
An important question to ask yourself is, what’s the motivation behind your resolution? This is important because without a personal reason motivating you to change and work towards self-improvement, you won’t be as likely to succeed. Sticking to resolutions for the long haul requires more than making behavioral changes because you must also, change your mindset. As you can imagine, this is going to be next to impossible if it is not something you actually, WANT to do.
2. Realistic Resolutions
Toss your grandiose goals to the side and instead, focus your energy on defining achievable resolutions. Develop action plans for carrying out resolutions and avoid becoming overwhelmed by taking things one step at a time. It helps to break goals down by setting weekly targets and be sure to track progress by marking off each accomplishment to help keep you motivated.
3. Ditch Deprivation
If you are thinking of giving something up completely, think again. Restriction and deprivation feels like punishment. So rather than deprive yourself of something you love or struggle with giving up, commit to minimizing the habit. If the habit isn’t directly causing you harm, it is often best to commit yourself to a life of moderation. This is especially true if you are the kind of person where telling yourself no, makes you want it even more.
4. Design an Incentives and Reward System
The best reward should be the feeling of achieving your goals but let’s be real, this isn’t always enough. So when personal gratification isn’t enough, start thinking outside the box! There is no shame in dangling a larger carrot in front of yourself if it means, you are going to push harder. Enjoy your success and offer yourself small and large incentives for small and large goals. Just make sure that the reward you put up for yourself, isn’t contradicting your resolution.
5. Strengthen Willpower & Remember, Practice Makes Perfect
Willpower is like a muscle. If overused, it will become tired and weak but with the right practice, your ability to refrain from giving in to short-term temptations can be strengthened. Lack of self-control is a major barrier for those looking to make a change so take actions to boost willpower like: using your imagination, distracting yourself by thinking of something else, avoiding temptations and building upon good habits to rely on when stressed.
6. Remind Yourself that Patience is a Virtue
Be patient because altering behaviors is not an easy task. There is a long process for making permanent lifestyle changes so it is only logical to expect setbacks. Learn to recover by identifying obstacles and creating solutions for overcoming them in the future.
7. Stay Positive
If you experience setbacks – try, and try again! Refrain from over-criticizing yourself and obsessing over slip-ups because this can negatively impact confidence and hinder your ability to stay on task. Always think positively because your own words of encouragement can often, be the most powerful way to eliminate self doubt and motivate you to continue.
If you listen to our suggestions and follow our advice for making successful New Year’s Resolutions, you will without a doubt reach your goals!