The Secrets to Realistic New Year’s Resolutions

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It’s that time of the year again! Time to make some New Year’s resolutions! If they’re part of your yearly tradition, you may or may not have succeeded in the past. As with any goal setting, there are a number of things you can do help achieve them, which often begins with setting realistic resolutions. Here’s how you can go about creating your own resolution, and one that’s logical, doable, and one you can see yourself accomplishing in 2013!

Change one thing at a time
Coming up with a long list of New Year’s resolutions might seem like a good idea, but taking on too much at once can overwhelm you and weaken your focus and motivation. If you really want to keep your resolution(s), it’s best to start off with one or maybe two goals that you really want to achieve and make changes slowly but surely toward them. You don’t want to bite off more than you can chew, so keep it simple and change one thing at a time. It’s challenging enough to change one behavior, so taking on less will likely give you a better chance to succeed.

Make a plan and set mini goals
No matter what your final goal is, it’s important to create a plan of attack in order to achieve it. For example, using a calendar or day planner to set dates and mini goals can help keep you on track and avoid setbacks. If you want to lose weight by eating healthier and exercising, create a weekly meal plan with healthy recipes and block off some time during the week for a few workouts. You’ll be able to track your progress and feel good about how far you’ve come, each step of the way.

Know yourself
If you have a major sweet tooth, giving up dessert might be really difficult. Knowing yourself, including your strengths and weaknesses, can help you figure out a realistic resolution for yourself. Maybe instead of giving up dessert all together, you allow one big splurge a week. Creating an outrageous goal that surpasses your abilities will likely lead to failure, so set a resolution that challenges and pushes you out of your comfort zone, but also makes sense for you.

Recommit to your goal each day
One of the biggest challenges about resolutions is motivation, and sometimes simply remembering what you set out to do. When you’re faced with a tough situation where your goal is tested, it’s easy to get off track or make excuses. If you constantly remind yourself of the goal (maybe by a sticky note on your computer or bathroom mirror) it will keep it on your mind throughout the day, so you can work toward it and eventually achieve it.

Read Tina’s daily food and fitness blog, Carrots ‘N’ Cake.

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