New Year’s Eve has always been a time for looking back to the past, and more importantly, forward to the coming year. It’s a time to reflect on the changes we want (or need) to make and resolve to follow through on those changes. Which of the following resolutions are you looking into this year?
- Lose Weight
- Get more Exercise
- Quit Smoking
- Learn Something New
- Spend more time with Friends and Family
- Enjoy Life more
- Get out of Debt
- Help Others
- Quit Drinking
- Get Organized
If you take a closer look at each one of these they all have link either direct or indirectly to your health. We all understand the health benefits of increased exercise, stopping smoking and drinking, and losing weight have on us. How does Helping others, Enjoying Life More, Learning Something New, Getting Organized or even Getting out of debt fall make us healthier? For one, they help us feel better about ourselves and reduce the amount of stress you have in your life. In past posts I have discussed the negative effects (immune, cardiovascular, digestive, etc.) that stress can impose on your body. By helping to eliminate this added stress, you will have more energy and help your body deal with many of the other challenges it may have to deal with.
Set your Goal
My primary reason for writing this article is to provide you with Foundational and Fundamental ideas on achieving your New Years Goals. Whether or not your goal is directly related to your health or not doesn’t really matter. The information to follow will help you in whatever your goals may be. To reach your goal you must first set your goal. Your goal should be reasonable which may mean doing some homework on what is reasonable to achieve. An example would be someone who has spent the last 10 years putting on an extra 50 pounds and thinking they should lose that weight in 30 days. If you did your homework you would learn that you should lose a pound to a pound and a half per week, which means it, may or should take you 33-50 weeks to shed those pounds. If you set your goal (expectations) to be in a much shorter timeframe-that would be unreasonable, unhealthy and usually lead you to “give up” and fail.
The following are the steps on how to help you set and reach your goal(s):
- Define your goal: Be specific about what you want to achieve. How many pounds, timeframe, etc.?
- Outline the steps needed: Once you have decided, “where you want to go” you need to figure out how you plan to get there. Map out the steps needed to reach your goal.
- Set a timeline: You goal and your timeline to reach your goal are up to you.
- Ask for Help: Consult someone who knows more about the subject than you do. Asking for help can be used an all aspects of your goal.
- Consider possible delays or roadblocks: (a major reason people never reach their intended goal) There are many potential delays and you need to be aware of what they are and how to prepare for them. I have heard so many people say “I was doing great until….we went on vacation…I got sick…my son moved back in with me…” The list is endless. Like a boy scout- be prepared.
- Reward yourself: Build this into your outline and timeline. Example: For every 4 pounds I lose I can take 1 day off from activity. All work and no play make you a very unhappy person.
- Write it all down: This is the most important step. Write down exactly what you want to achieve and post it in a place where you will see it every day.
- Set yourself in motion: For things to change in your life-You Must Change. Set yourself in motion means don’t just think about it or talk about it but do it. The burden/responsibility of your change is yours and no one else’s. The sooner you set yourself in motion the quicker you will achieve your goal(s).
Whatever you do-Don’t Give Up! My favorite story to tell my children is the tortes and the hare. Slow and steady wins the race. Just as I mentioned above you need to set yourself in motion and then keep it going. Go slow and don’t give up!