Dig deep for new year’s resolutions that will really stick.
Timing counts and January 1 is just one option for a start date
With 2016 drawing to a close, many of us are celebrating. It might be all the great things we have achieved or that have happened over the past 12 months or the fact that we’ve survived a terrible year and are hoping for a better 2017.
Whatever we’re celebrating, it’s often a time for reflecting on all that’s happened and how we have fared through it all. We may recognise that some things need to change and decide to set up some resolutions for the year ahead.
But wait… how many of the resolutions that you made last year (if you did) were achieved?
Apparently about 88% of people give up on their resolutions by January 17. It doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t be making some positive changes in our life that we feel are necessary but I suggest there are a few things to consider.
The first is timing. While January 1 may seem like the perfect time of year to start there are probably still many temptations around to distract us. Whether it’s the remainder of the Christmas treats, left over bottles of alcohol or we’re still on holiday and making the most of it, there are likely to be many distractions that threaten to derail us very quickly. Choose your timing, whatever fits best for you but be sure to choose a starting point and stick to it; it doesn’t even have to be January.
The second is to consider the solution you’re applying to your resolution. Take weight as an example, a common choice after any excesses of the festive season. If your solution is to reduce your intake, substitute meals with shakes or follow one of myriad diets heavily promoted every new year, it’s not the answer; diets often leave us craving everything we can’t eat.
Carrying too much weight is often a reflection of poor choices triggered by our emotional environment. How often do you reach for a treat or comfort food when feeling sad, tired, angry, bored or even happy? At that point we are less likely to be thinking of nourishing our self and more about what tastes good at the time and satisfies. Instead we need to consider the underlying driver of that behaviour; what’s triggering the emotion that is causing the behaviour?
And it doesn’t just apply to eating, essentially it’s the same with any habit – whether drinking alcohol, overdoing the caffeine, exhausting the body through excessive exercise or keeping ourselves super busy. What is it we are avoiding or not wanting to feel when we do that?
My suggestion? Make healthy and positive changes by all means and, before you do, be sure to choose your timing and explore what’s really causing the undesirable behaviour because that is what needs to be addressed.
It’s your choice; will 2017 your happiest and healthiest yet?
For now, Nick and I wish you a safe and harmonious start to the new year.
It’s your choice: will 2017 be your happiest and healthiest yet?