Skip to main content

How to set resolutions you can stick to this New Year


It's that time of year when people start to think about how they want their future to look.


Do you have any New Year resolutions?


Setting yourself new goals and aspirations is a great way to start making positive changes in your life.

But are you falling into the trap?

THE TRAP!


A lot of people start out their year with sincere and heartfelt goals, but struggle to keep up with them.

Then they stop working at it, don't reach the goal and feel bad. They couldn't do The Thing. They will never reach The Goal. They feel like they have failed.

This year, you will not fall into The Trap, because I'm here to help.

Your 3 step guide to great resolutions

1. Set an achievable goal


Be realistic. Is is something that is physically possible? Will it require changes or resources that you are ready, willing and able to action?

Let's have a look at some examples. Let's say your goal is to run a marathon, in 4 weeks time. Let's be honest, unless you are already a long distance runner, you are setting yourself up for failure. But maybe you could go for next year's race?

Or you are trying to lose weight. Say 10 kg. Can your body afford to lose 10kg (aka, do you have 10kg of fat spare, or are you going to have to start removing appendages)? Can you give yourself enough time (no more than 1% of your bodyweight a week, so 0.5-1kg for most people). Do you understand the changes you will have to make? Are you able to make them? Do you want to?


2. Break it down


Picture your goal one year from now. What do you need to do to get there? What do you need to be able to achieve that?

How will you know if you are on track? What can you measure to check your progress?

What action do you need to take every day in order to bring yourself closer to your target?

Let's try some examples. Say you want to become a bus driver. To do that you need to have the appropriate license, you need to take lessons to learn to drive a bus. Before you can do that you need to have a car license. How long would each of these things take? How much would it cost?

You want to lose 20kg in 6 months. That means you want to be losing 3-4 kg a month. About 0.8 kg a week. To do that you will need to be in a caloric deficit of about 4-500 calories a day. To do that you could add a lunchtime walk or evening fitness class to your schedule, and switch your sugar/carb heavy breakfast for something with more protein, so you won't want to snack mid morning. Now we have a daily plan....


3. Be accountable


Find a way to check in with your daily action, every day. Use a phone reminder, a star chart on your fridge. Have a person you can check in with, like a friend or a coach.

Check off your action every day. If you do it, you are winning that day. If you don't, it's just one day of a whole year, you can try again tomorrow.

So take our weight loss example again (because weight loss is what people ask me about most...). You could have a chart with 2 tick boxes, one for the extra exercise, and one for remembering to have protein with breakfast. Every day you tick them off if you remember them. Every tick is a win. Even if you miss some days your chart fills up with ticks. That makes you feel good.

You can't fail if you keep working at it. Every day is a fresh chance to get it right again.

Motivation doesn't come from a final, epic goal of great magnitude. In the moment, day by day, the idea of fitting into an ancient pair of jeans just isn't enough to keep you going. Those small wins are going to be what keeps you in the game. Keep at it until it becomes a habit, then it becomes easy.

Every couple of weeks check your progress. Are you getting closer? Is your plan working? Or does it need tweaking? Be a scientist, be fascinated with the process.

It's OK to change the plans up if it's not working. That's having a growth mindset. Be curious, keep trying, aim for consistency, but be prepared to try new ideas.

Looking for more ideas? Click here and sign up to my 7 day reset.

https://mailchi.mp/a5938a7f06ff/reset

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

What's the deal with yoga and hypermobility?

I wanted to address a question today that keeps coming up on various hypermobility and EDS forums that I frequent. It comes up so often in fact that I feel like I have to write this all up in one place, to save me 1000s of key strokes of individual responses and distil some of my opinions and thought processes on the matter.

It always goes like this. Someone asks a question like "I've just been diagnosed with hypermobility, I've been told I can't do yoga anymore..."

The responses are always a mixture of "yes, my doctor/physio told me yoga was the worst thing I could do for my hypermobility" and "I do yoga and it's been the best thing for my hypermobility".

So what gives?

Well, I'm firmly in the "yoga is useful" camp, and I have to disclose that. I'm a yoga practitioner of around 20 years and a perinatal yoga teacher, as well as a personal trainer and bendy person.

While I have the deepest respect for the medical professio…

I'm an intelligent grown-up, so why can't I eat like one?

Nutrition is complicated.
The rules change all the time. One minute we are told a food is bad, the next it's good. It's like scientists can't make their minds up!

Fat does't make you fat. Sugar is toxic. Undereating puts you in starvation mode. But you can "hack" your metabolism with this one weird trick.....

Of course all of this is false, or at least such a gross reduction of the truth that it is open to extreme misinterpretation. Put it out in plain sight and it becomes very clear that it doesn't hold water. So why are we believing this? Why are people telling us this, and most importantly; why as educated, intelligent adults who are perfectly capable of identifying a healthy plate of food, are we still struggling to consistently eat well?

The rules of healthy eating.
Healthy eating is not at all complicated. It's actually so obscenely simple that when I spell it out you're going to go "well tell me something I didn't know" and r…

Getting it done

My goodness I've been up to my ears recently!

A bunch of work came to a close, I took on some more, and then some other stuff came up and turned what I was expecting to be a fallow period into a flurry of tasks and deadlines.

And because of this, the several blogs I have on my to-do list, remain not done.

But I thought I would check in quickly and talk to you about how I get through those mad to do lists, and avoid getting bogged down by small stuff - because it was a hard lesson to learn.

Left to my own devices, I am both a procrastinator and a perfectionist. I want things right, but sometimes that means they don't get done.

I also suffer from social anxiety. In some ways this is an advantage when I work primarily in connecting with people, It makes me mindful in the way I communicate, and empathic with their uneasiness when it comes to the deep talk. It also means I really need a kick up the butt to reach out, or to get communication done, I need it to be right. Is it tactfu…

Your quick and easy guide to eating healthy from a restaurant menu

Ok, so last time I totally saved your lunch box, and now I'm here to save your lunch out.

Eating out is fun. It's a classic example of how food is so much more than fuel for our bodies - and that is one of the reasons why making dietary changes can be hard. It's not just about what you put in your face, it's also about your culture, the people you hang with, your habits and your emotional or sensory connections with food.



Eating in restaurants can be fraught with difficulty for people trying to adjust their eating patterns. You might have established preferences on the menu, you can't control the portion size or the ingredients in your dishes. You might feel pressured to drink alcohol and studies suggest that people actually eat more when eating in company.

This is why many people on strict weight loss diets, or athletes prepping for competition often choose to sacrifice social eating for their final goals. But you might not have that option if your job involves so…

I'm here to save your lunch. How to make the best salads in the world.

Twice this week, I have caught myself saying to myself (because I talk to myself a lot) "Salads are awesome, I love salad".

Then I laugh at myself for being a massive dork who likes salad AND talks to myself about it.

But it made me think about how often salad is done a great disservice as a food.

Up until my mid twenties, I hated salad. Salad was boring. But the reason I felt this way, was that I, like many children of the '80s, grew up with "salad" that consisted of strips of iceburg lettuce and watery tomatoes. The classic school dinner salad. With salad creme on the side. Possibly also with Spam.

So let's stop this right now. That stuff isn't salad. It's a very sad garnish with big ideas it hasn't got the backbone to live up to.

Then I learned that salad could be made with leaves that don't taste of refrigerator and sadness. And you can add all sorts of awesome things to make it super tasty and satisfying.

But those kinds of salads get a…