By Elena Sprick
Each year, about 50% of the population sets resolutions for the year ahead for goals they would like to achieve. The most common goals tend to be to lose weight, exercise regularly, quit smoking or get finances in order. But by the end of January, most people have already given up on their positive intentions and have returned to old habits, only to set the same goals the following year.
Even though most people do not follow through with their resolutions, there are some steps that you can follow to help make your goals more achievable. In honor of healthy weight week this week, we’re providing some tips for keeping on track with your goals of achieving a healthy weight in 2017.
- Set goals in positive terms. Rather than telling yourself that you will completely eliminate fast food for the year, try setting a goal such as trying to eat vegetables with every meal. Restrictions can make you feel confined and can be difficult to follow. Instead, choosing a positive goal that you can add to your routine will allow for greater ease in following through on your plans.
- Create an action plan to help you achieve your goals. While having a goal is great, if you don’t have a clear plan in place you are not likely to achieve it. If your goal is to reach a target weight, plan as many details as you can to get yourself there: When you will exercise? What kind of exercise will you do? When you will cook meals? What kind of food you will prepare? Figuring out these details from the start will help you to stick with your plan until you reach your goal.
- Set specific, realistic goals. Coming up with goals that are too grandiose is more likely to make you feel frustrated when you don’t reach them. Instead, choose targets that are within reach for you. If you want to lose weight, choose an amount that you feel is doable for you within a set timeframe. You can even create a timeline of smaller steps throughout the year, such as losing five pounds by February, another three in March, and so on.
- Don’t give up! Setbacks happen, so it is important to plan for them and not let them derail you. You might gain a pound back or eat an unhealthy meal that you feel bad about, but if that happens, just accept it, move on, and get back on track.
- Remind yourself of your goals. Rather than keeping mental lists of your goals, write down your specific resolutions as well as your plan for keeping them. You could post your list to your bathroom mirror or keep it in the notes in your phone. Either way, look at it every once in awhile to remind yourself of what you’re trying to achieve.
No matter what your goals may be for 2017, we wish you all the luck in reaching them. Following these steps will put you on the right track to creating achievable goals that you can follow through on.
Elena Sprick is a Certified Holistic Nutrition Health Coach with experience in guiding people to choose healthy eating habits and make healthy lifestyle choices. Elena works on the Marketing team at HHS.