What to do with the New Year, Old You Blues?
Tips for keeping your New Year’s resolutions in recovery
More than half of all Americans reported making a New Year’s resolution. The most popular resolutions were: save more money and lose weight. With February just around the corner, now is a good time to take a look at those resolutions. Whether it’s to keep yourself on track or recommit to an intention. It can also be a helpful practice to look at this as developing new habits and ideas to replace old ones — if a Resolution feels too ambitious or unachievable. Either way, here are some tips from our clinical staff to help keep you achieve your 2020 goals!
Keep resolutions small
A goal or resolution that’s too big for you to follow through with can be counterproductive, contributing to a sense of failing at what you set out to do. That’s not at all what setting a resolution is about.
To keep your resolution manageable, break it down into smaller chunks.
For example, instead of resolving to exercise every day, resolve to walk or bike to work once a week. Or instead of committing to a vegetarian diet, try meat-free Mondays and build from there.
Even after establishing a small and manageable goal it’s important to be specific about what is it you’re setting out to do.
Lose weight? How much do you mean? Save more money? Exactly how much?
Specificity also helps set more reasonable benchmarks along the way, and each little benchmark achieved encourages you to keep going.
Write them down and tell a friend
Writing down your goal helps clarify what exactly it is you’re hoping to accomplish, plus it produces something tangible for you to refer back to, helping you stay on track.
Consider bouncing your resolution off a friend or sponsor. This will help you stay accountable. It will also provide an outsider’s perspective on whether your goal seems reasonable.
In addition to all of the above, check-in with yourself regularly and be sure to celebrate the positive steps you’ve taken – no matter how small.
Setting a resolution is really about behavior modification and that can take time. Experts say it takes 90 consecutive days to change behavior and build new neural pathways in the brain, helping that new behavior stay for good.
So, remember – it’s ok to slip up! In fact, it’s guaranteed you’ll have setbacks on the way to reaching your objective. Just get back up and try again.
Happy 2020 all