Happy New Year!
As is customary, we start the new year with renewed resolve to take charge of their health. But as the weeks pass, most of us go back to our old ways. Yes, changing old habits is really really hard.
Here are a few suggestions:
1. Break down your Big-Hairy-Audacious-New-Year’s Resolution into several smaller goals. Instead of declaring you plan to lose 50 pounds, set a goal of losing 5 pounds by the end of January. Then another 5 pounds by the end of February. And so on. Each time you achieve a small goal, you are set up to succeed with the next one.
2. Define concrete goals, not abstracts ones. Instead of vowing to “eat healthy this year”, set a goal such as eating 2 servings of fruit per day, or having kale once a week. Instead of “planning to exercise”, set a goal of jogging for 15 minutes on Saturday morning.
3. Make changes to your environment so that you won’t get tripped up. For example – place all the junk foods in the house on the highest cupboard in your pantry or in the darkest recess of your fridge. Keep fresh pre-washed fruit readily available on the kitchen counter or near your La-Z-boy in the family room.
4. This is a hard one: find your triggers. What causes you to get excited about an hour long run that you’ll wake up at 5:30am on a freezing January morning? Conversely, what leads you down the path to that extra, unnecessary serving of cake at the office party?
What are you planning to do to improve your health this year?